4.19 (2,792 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback
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Product details

  • Paperback | 309 pages
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • New ed of Large print ed
  • 0753166593
  • 9780753166598

Review Text

Martina Cole first took the literary scene by storm back in 1992, when her novel Dangerous Lady, became an instant best-seller and TV drama series. Since then, she has written several more novels, all set in the dark underworld of London's gangland, and peopled by a variety of tough heroines. This latest work is a powerful novel which pulls no punches - it is definitely not for the faint-hearted. Cole has an ear for the vernacular of the East End as well as an ability to portray the viciousness of life at the edge without shirking from brutality. Marie Carter has been imprisoned for 11 years, convicted of beating her two best friends to death in a drug- and drink-fuelled frenzy. Now she is free to start again, but she has nowhere to go - her parents, her children and her former friends have all abandoned her. But Marie has her sights set on the man who destroyed her, and who seems hell-bent on destroying her daughter as well. Patrick Connor is a master of wanton cruelty who delights in his power over women. He craves ultimate control over all the illegal trades in the district, and he doesn't care who gets harmed on the way. Martina Cole has again taken us deep into the rotten heart of the East End underworld, where drugs and prostitution are part of everyday life and retribution is swift and often deadly. Yet there is hope and a chance for a new start - it's a slim prospect but one that Marie clings to throughout the novel. There are numerous characters whose behaviour seems to be beyond redemption, yet time and again they display humanity and an ability to change. This possibility of something good coming out of such wretchedness gives the novel a true sense of purpose: despite the brutality and the almost unbearable realism, this is ultimately a book to savour for its message of hope. (Kirkus UK)
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Rating details

2,792 ratings
4.19 out of 5 stars
5 46% (1,271)
4 33% (930)
3 17% (478)
2 3% (85)
1 1% (28)
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