House of Anansi Press Imprint Logo


Written by Misha Glenny

  • 400 Pages
  • 9780887848186
  • 9.190" x 6.000"
  • POLITICAL SCIENCE / Globalization
  • SOCIAL SCIENCE / Criminology



Publication Date February 01, 2009

Drugs, weapons, migrant labour, women - these are just a few of the many goods that effortlessly cross national borders in this globalized age, often without the knowledge or permission of the nations concerned. How is this remarkable criminal feat managed?

From gun runners in the Ukraine, to money launderers in Dubai, cyber criminals in Brazil, racketeers in Japan, and the booming marijuana industry in western Canada, McMafia builds a breathtaking picture of a secret and bloody business.

Internationally celebrated writer Misha Glenny crafts a fascinating, highly readable, and impressively well-researched account of the emergence of organized crime as a globalized phenomenon and shows how its secret and bloody business mirrors both the methods and the rewards of the legitimate world economy. Employing his journalistic talent and his prior experience covering organized crime in Eastern Europe, Glenny reports on his travels around the planet to investigate this worrying and worsening situation. After comprehensively surveying the criminal scene, Glenny ends by considering the future of organized crime. McMafia is an important book that assembles all the pieces of this worldwide puzzle for the first time.

Short-listed for the FT/Goldman Sachs Business Book Award 2008

Short-listed for the Lionel Gelber Prize for World's Best Book on International Affairs 2009

Selected for the Globe and Mail Top 100 Best Books of the Year 2008


Misha Glenny
Misha Glenny is an award-winning journalist and scholar. He lives in London, England. Visit Misha Glenny's website: Follow Misha Glenny on Twitter:


"...[McMafia is] a vividly recounted journey through a dozen of the world's most potent gangs, cartels and transnational mafias..." Wall Street Journal

"...[McMafia] is a fascinating, highly readable take on the world's crime syndicates." Vancouver Sun

"...[McMafia] is crowded with the world's most ruthless and forward-thinking outlaws...[and] sets out to show how the process of globalization has given birth to a planet-spanning network of organized crime that mimics the growth, complexity, and entrepreneurial know-how of the legitimate economy."

"...Glenny makes an effective case for [organized crime] becoming a truly global force..." Toronto Star

"...horrifying but gripping...vivid and involving..." Daily Telegraph

"...Immensely informative and more than slightly scary..." Washington Post

"...sprawling, ambitious...[McMafia is] a reporting odyssey...its thesis is clear, compelling, and scary: the West may have declared war on terrorism, but organized crime is by far the more serious threat to our world today and one we ignore at our peril...Glenny's journey through the international underworld is, on the whole, a rich and illuminating one." Christian Science Monitor

"...demonstrating Glenny's courage, [McMafia] exhibits...characteristics of special importance...he provides insightful sociological perspectives..." Seattle Times

"...immensely informative and more than slightly scary book describes in all too vivid detail...Glenny tells the dispiriting story...[and] locates both the problem and its solution..." Washington Post

"[McMafia is a]...wildly ambitious tour of organized crime in the era of globalization." New York Times

"[Misha Glenny] tells a grisly story very well." Sunday Times

"A riveting and chilling journey...Readers yearning for a deeper understanding of the real-life, international counterparts to The Sopranos need look no further than Glenny's engrossing study." Publishers Weekly

"Amid the gathering storm of international organized crime and gangster capitalism, Misha Glenny stands alone as a journalist who has ventured to the heart of the whirlwind and survived to tell the tale. The breadth of this story is staggering. His aim, deadly accurate." William Marsden

"For sheer enterprise...[Misha Glenny] is hard to beat..." New York Times

"In this well-researched and riveting account, Misha Glenny dissects the international criminal organizations that run much of the world's economy and explains how the criminal underworld has benefited from and contributed to globalization." Joseph Stiglitz

"Misha Glenny travels the world like Dante on his voyage through the 'global shadow economy'...[McMafia] makes this trip through the nastiest parts of the world as gripping as it is important." Daily Telegraph

"Misha Glenny's eye-opening tour of the world's 'shadowing economy' of organized crime that has grown for two engrossing examination of international crime trends." Scottsdale Tribune/The Miami Herald

"This is the most important non-fiction book of the year...organised crime's version of Fast Food Nation, Eric Schlosser's bestseller about the junk-food industry." Mail on Sunday

"...[McMafia is] informative and eye-opening at every page." Spectator (U.K.)

"[Glenny's] book should be appreciated for the powerful wake-up call it is. Think of it as a Lonely Planet Guide to Organized Crime. Don't leave home without it." Globe and Mail

"[Misha Glenny] never lets the reader go, determined to shake us into realizing none of us are safe in the end from the tentacles of the new global underworld. Glenny, a former BBC correspondent, pulls off with aplomb what is always the biggest challenge for true-crime writers: making it matter...Glenny's book should be appreciated for the powerful wake-up call it is. Think of it as a Lonely Planet Guide of Organized Crime. Don't leave home without it." Globe and Mail

"Based on the author's skillful investigative journalism, this survey of international wrongdoing makes for fantastic reading that surprises on more than one occasion: Who knew that western Canada had more organized criminal syndicates per capita than any other nation?...A bracing, frightening ride..." Kirkus Reviews

"Gripping." Economist

"If we're lucky, McMafia's terrifying tour of the violent underworld of globalized crime will force this issue onto the political agenda." New York Post

"Smart, serious, and highly readable." Guardian