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Cole's long-winded London gangland saga charts the rise to felonious fame and fortune of Danny Boy Cadogan, from the late '60s to the present. As an oversized 13-year-old, Danny beats up his father, a useless waster saddled with gambling debts, and becomes his family's primary breadwinner. Louie Stein, a crook impressed by Danny's spirit, mentors Danny as Danny and his best friend, Michael Miles, become the new rude boys. At age 15, Danny beats a young prostitute to death after raping her, and he kills again to shut up a squealer, cementing his reputation as a super thug. Later, Danny marries Michael's sister, Mary, who hopes for happiness, but soon finds she's just another person the unfaithful Danny wants to control. Danny's reign of terror becomes a thing of legend, but like all legends, there's always someone ready to knock the kingpin down. Cole (Close) skillfully shows just how the mighty can fall in this sordid, often depressing, crime novel. (
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review by . May 28, 2009
I was lucky to get an advanced copy of this excellent novel from an author I did not know of.  Based on this book, I will know her going forward.  It is an excellent introduction into the world of the British mobster scene.  In some ways it parallels "Wise Guy" (the book version of Goodfellas) however, Ms. Cole shows that these British thugs have very few rules of conduct.   Danny Boy Codigan is a fearsome "Face" which means he is a mobster that everybody knows and must give …
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