Pin Action: When the mafia controlled bowling

Posted on 03/01/2017 in misc

Pin Action: Small-Time Gangsters, High-Stakes Gambling, and the Teenage Hustler Who Became a Bowling Champion by Gianmarc Manzione

A kindle $1.99 special that I bought just because the idea of the Mafia controlling local bowling was fascinating. I used to watch the PBA on ABC back in its heyday, so a lot of the names in this book were familiar to me. What I didn't know was the story of action bowling, of 24 hour bowling lanes on every corner in NYC in the 50s and 60s, with the Mafia running gambling on head-to-head bowling matches. It sounds ludicrous at first, but I guess no more so than betting on horses or dogs. You don't need to care about bowling to enjoy the book, as ultimately it's a rags to riches story of a teenage bowling hustler that finally makes the PBA tour, and struggles there before finally becoming a winner. It's a highly entertaining and fascinating look at the seedy side of America's wholesome pastime of the 60s and 70s.