Love or Honor An honest cop loses his head and his heart in this gripping account of a love affair on the wrong side of the law
On the eve of his second wedding anniversary, Chris Anastos feels secure in his marriage and in his work with the NYPD’s anticrime unit in the South Bronx. A summons to the downtown headquarters of the Intelligence Division spells trouble, however. Links between the Italian mob and a Greek criminal network in Queens have been discovered, and investigators want the Greek-American cop to go undercover.
Reluctantly, Anastos agrees. For five years he plays his role to perfection, moving back and forth between his comfortable home life and a murky, underground world of wiseguys, pimps, bookies, racketeers, thieves, and heroin dealers. But when the happily married cop falls in love with the beautiful, raven-haired daughter of a Long Island capo, he faces his gravest threat yet.
From the acclaimed author of A Death in Canaan and A Death in California, this is the unforgettable true story of a good man torn between passion and principle.
“Fascinating . . . Extraordinary . . . Bizarre . . . Compelling reading.” —Nicholas Pileggi, author of Wiseguy
“For devotees of cop tales and mob lore . . . Tantalizing.” —The New York Times Book Review
“A compelling drama about love and the strange, elastic nature of identity. An absorbing read.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Expertly written. [Love or Honor] tells Anastos’ story with the force and flair of a high-caliber TV miniseries.” —Publishers Weekly
“Joan Barthel is an award-winning true crime writer, and in Love or Honor she is working at the top of her form.” —Book Beat
“Barthel breezily draws us into Chris’s life and mind and keeps us hanging on until the end.” —Inside Books
Joan Barthel is an award-winning author of nonfiction and a contributor to many national publications, including the Washington Post Magazine and the New York Times Magazine. Her first book, A Death in Canaan (1976), uncovered the miscarriage of justice in the case of a Connecticut teenager accused of murdering his mother. It won the American Bar Association Gavel Award, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, and became an Emmy-nominated television movie. A Death in California (1981), the story of a Beverley Hills socialite caught in the thrall of the man who murdered her fiancé, was the basis for a television miniseries. Love or Honor (1989), the extraordinary account of a married undercover cop who infiltrated the Greek mafia only to fall in love with the Capo’s daughter, was called “fascinating” and “compelling” by Nicholas Pileggi. Barthel cowrote Rosemary Clooney’s autobiography, Girl Singer (1999), and is the author of American Saint (2014), a biography of Elizabeth Seton with a foreword by Maya Angelou.