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East End Gangland [Paperback]

James Morton
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
RRP: 9.99
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Book Description

6 Sep 2001
The East End has always held a malign fascination for the general public. In this book James Morton looks at this phenomenon from the days of the unsolved murders committed by Jack the Ripper to the 1960s when the Kray Twins held the reins of the Underworld, to the present and how the structure of crimes and criminal gangs has changed. EAST END GANGLAND looks not only at the Twins but also at the influx of immigrant gangs of the 1900s, the powerful Chinese drug dealers of the 1920s, the racecourse gangs, the men who ran crime on the docks, and organised prostitution throughout the century to the major drug dealers of today.

Frequently Bought Together

East End Gangland + Gangs of London
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  • Gangs of London 6.29

Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere; New Ed edition (6 Sep 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0751530050
  • ISBN-13: 978-0751530056
  • Product Dimensions: 18 x 11 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 217,815 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


A refreshing change from those that examine only the life of the Kray family. A fascinating read (SUNDERLAND ECHO)

A fascinating look behind closed lock-up doors...a book that will prove essential reading for anyone who thinks they know East London. (EVENING STANDARD)

Morton's account...destroys quaint ideas about crime. (BIG ISSUE)

The tales are told with a flourish in a fascinating, useful and lively history (THE TIMES)

Book Description

* A history of East End gangsters from the 1870s until today, charting the changes in society and the way the Underworld has evolved to stay ahead of the Law.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
My father, who was a spice merchant, had a warehouse and office in Mitre Street just around the corner from where Jack the Ripper killed Mary Kelly. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good for its time 2 Mar 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Morton always produces an interesting read. Gangs of London, published in 2010 by Milo, has updated the lives of many of the villains mentioned in this book. It has also discovered the amazing 'Forty Elephants' all-female gang which is causing a stir at the moment.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Strength in depth 26 May 2012
I like it. For sure, some sections are rather 'dense' and a bit hard to follow, but were the author to slow things down, the book couldn't cover as much ground. It's also the case that particularly interesting episodes and characters do from time to time get a less staccato coverage.

The style is dry but not in the sense of being without wit, and the book is well edited. Many of the events and situations are enlivened by a faintly sardonic tone. Criminals 'quite properly' refuse to testify before the grand jury... and when someone gets taken to an 'escape proof' gaol, you can almost guess that the next line will be 'he escaped the next day'...

Content wise, I found the depiction of criminal life during the 1920s and 30s in the USA quite surprising in terms of the sheer scale of violence and corruption. I was also surprised (though less so the more I read) by how reckless a lot of these criminals were in terms of ripping each other off - "Such and such decided not to give [insert insanely violent and ruthless criminal's name here] their share of the money..." They did WHAT?

A book that's lively but not lazy or 'pulpy', and broad enough in scope and scale to provide excellent value for money.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 3 July 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Very Good
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very Interesting. 10 Jan 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Well written and extremely entertaining. Hard to believe that these people were real and not fictional.Certainly food for thought .
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Hard Work 29 April 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Not exactly what you could call a thrilling read. If anything it's heavy going, simply because of the way it's written. It doesn't flow and is overly disjointed thus making it difficult to follow. The storytelling isn't particularly interesting and doesn't offer anything much in the way of any "wow" factor and if anything is just too boring and plodding. Not really an author I could recommend and I would suggest looking elsewhere for books on this genre. I'm sure there must be other authors who have mastered the technique of interesting reading much better than this one has.
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