Book: The Honoured Society: The Sicilian Mafia Observed, by Norman Lewis (Original-1964 with postscript added in 1984; reviewed edition 2003.)
If you were playing word-association, Sicily-Mafia might be your first reaction. The Honoured Society seems to me to be a perfect addition to a library of travel literature– if you read it along with Seeking Sicily— to understand that region of Italy. You will find many of the same themes in the two books.
Norman Lewis is best known as an outstanding travel writer. (See my review of Naples ’44). But his first wife was Swiss-Sicilian, and her father, an exile from Sicily, belonged to the Mafia. Thus began Lewis’ interest in the honoured society. His book benefits from personal experience and meticulous research in addition to Lewis’ skills as a wordsmith. Think how much he enhances the following paragraph, which could have been a dry list of facts. Continue reading The Mafia in Sicily