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The Life Hardcover – 13 Sep 2012

784 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Headline (13 Sept. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0755375572
  • ISBN-13: 978-0755375578
  • Product Dimensions: 15.7 x 4.3 x 23.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (784 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 160,872 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Martina Cole is the No. 1 bestselling author of sixteen hugely successful novels. Hard Girls went straight to No. 1 on the Sunday Times hardback bestseller list. The Business was the No. 1 bestselling hardback adult fiction title of 2008 and was a No. 1 Sunday Times hardback bestseller, along with Faces, Close and The Take. The Take also won the British Book Award for Crime Thriller of the Year and has been adapted for Sky One - with remarkable reviews - and The Runaway is currently in production. The Know was selected by Richard & Judy as one of the Top Ten Best Reads of 2003. Maura's Game, Faceless and The Graft also shot straight to No. 1 on the Sunday Times bestseller lists, and total sales of Martina's novels are now at ten million copies. Martina Cole has a son and daughter and lives in Kent. Martina Cole is highly acclaimed for her hard-hitting, uncompromising and haunting writing, as well as for her incredible success.

Product Description

Review

'We always get excited when a Martina Cole novel drops on our desk, and she continues to maintain her reputation as one of the best fiction authors around with this gritty and unforgettable story of a family immersed in a world of violence and revenge. Spectacular' 5 ***** (Closer)

Book Description

An unflinching portrait of a family torn apart by violence and betrayal, but ultimately bound by loyalty, by blood, and by a burning desire for revenge . . .

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

65 of 69 people found the following review helpful By Dark lady on 30 Sept. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Martina Cole's early books were great reads, but unfortunately she doesn't seem to have had the same edge in her recent books. However The Life shows indications that early talent is still there.

The story is a saga about a criminal family with two psychopathic brothers with contrasting personalities who build up a criminal empire in London's East End. There are plenty of twists and turns in the plot as the next generation join the family business. It needs careful reading as the plot is complex in places with intrigues and betrayals. There is plenty of violence for those who like that.

Martina Cole's avid fans will love this book, but the more critical readers will find some of the repetition tiresome and although it is a fresh story, the characters seem to be stereotypes that Martina Cole has used before. Let's hope her next book will be more of an improvement and we will see Martina Cole back to her old form
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63 of 69 people found the following review helpful By WomanofSoul on 15 Sept. 2012
Format: Hardcover
Most would agree that Martina's books over the last couple of years have been somewhat lacking The Life however reminds us that MC is still capable of writing a book on level with her early work!

Although The Life may not be on par with the likes of Dangerous Lady or Broken for the first time in years I was unable to put one of her books down! I never share plot lines as I hate to read reviews that give the story away but what I will say is this book focuses on one family's intimate lifestyles and the pitfalls of living the criminal lifestyle.......

It does get a tad heavy reading wise in the middle of this book and as another reviewer pointed out the inner plot lines get a little tangled and I had to go back and check a few facts but it does come together really well at the end and Martina leaves this open for a sequeal and I hope she does pen one in the future! MC does have a habit these days of repeating points which in the Business completely ruined the book and she does do it in this book but it's done in such a way that it doesn't ruin the book..........rather feels like a little extra padding out of the story though!

All in all I actually really liked this book and I would recommend that you give it a read, no its not the best but it does feel as if MC is getting her mojo back!
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45 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Greedy Reader on 4 Oct. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
sick to death of that expression..seems to be on every second page of this book. I am afraid Cole has lost her touch, same old drivel. Looks like she has chucked bits of every book she has written together to produce this book.
Trading on her past glories...
I wont be buying any more of her books
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By C.H: Spain on 5 Jun. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have enjoyed much of Martina Cole's work and was looking forward to this substantial book. Unfortunately, it is far too long with almost nothing happening throughout. The writing is shoddy, and the whole work is seriously disappointing. Hope she's back to form soon, and that this one's a blip. Not worth the paper it wasted for printing.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By susan marshall on 6 Jun. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was excited as usual to read the next gripping instalment of Martina's books, but I was sorely disappointed . I have never had to scan pages or skip any part of her usual finger bitingly edge of the seat gritty books, yet the life proved that mistakes can be made, mine was purchasing it
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Vanessa w on 9 Feb. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As an avid martina cole reader, I was looking forward to her latest offering. However I found the book a bit predictable. Not up to the usual standard.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Worldly wise on 24 May 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
While this book is sure to be a big seller, as all Martina Coles books are, it doesn't alter the fact that it is a perfect example of very lazy writing. Coles adopts a formula, which seems to requires every guy to 'swallow his knob' more times than is good for anyone. Every character has to think, almost every time he appears, just how much he loves the person who is doing him wrong right now. Then of course we have the astute black brother and the out of control white brother who beget the black sons, most of whom are out of control and white sons, most of whom are astute.

I could go on about how bad this book is and how much I hated it, including the extremely irritating chapter headings, which on a Kindle sometimes take four pages to disappear(depending on the size of font used), but suffice to say that this will be the last Coles book that I every read. Some may say 'why read it if it was so bad?'. I can only explain that having spent money on it I refuse to give up. But it is certainly quite the most badly written book I have read for many, many years.

My advice to the author, if she actually cares about such things, would be to do a count of the number of times the same phrases as used throughout the book. To reduce the page filling technique of repeating points, but in different words by at least half. Reduce the incidences of characters realising 'I love him with all my heart, but' by about 90%. To spend a little time building a character rather than a series of cardboard cut-outs..... the list is endless but pointless I suppose.

My advice to potential readers would be DONT.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Naomi on 14 May 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have read and enjoyed all Martina Cole's books up until this latest one which I just didn't get. As always we had the same good son/bad son, go to mass, Irish mum etc,etc. It all gets a bit predictable after reading so many of her books but I can normally overlook that as her standard of writing is ,for me, brilliant and the stories have me gripped.This time though there were so many characters we didn't get to really know them and I just kept getting mixed up as to who was who. There were so many chapters often only a couple of pages long which were not necessary as they did not define a new part of the story but were just a continuation of the last page. I kept reading on waiting for a story to evolve but it didn't and I found myself getting annoyed wanting the old MC magic to happen but it didn't. Finally I know MC's books contain strong violence at times as this is part of the world she writes about but there is a torture scene towards the end of the book which was so graphic I skipped some of the pages. In future I will stick to Jessie Keane or re-readings M's earlier books.
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