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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vicious and violent as usual - lovely!
Reading this book is like watching a car-crash in slow motion. You can see the build-up to the dreadful things which are going to happen to the characters and you watch in fascination as your worst fears come to life. Martina Cole specialises in what might be described at brutal-realism. Her gang-land themes have the air of being written by someone who knows her topic...
Published on 19 July 2004 by A Common Reader

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Unbelievably bad
Truly dreadful. A depressing tale about London low-life written in a style that mirrors the characters perfectly - unattractive, illiterate and acutely boring. Not helped that it takes 250 pages of drivel to achieve the glimmer of a plot. If you can finish this one you deserve a prize - the next one.
Published on 5 Jan 2010 by Mr. N. Hunter


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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vicious and violent as usual - lovely!, 19 July 2004
By 
A Common Reader "Committed to reading" (Sussex, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Know (Paperback)
Reading this book is like watching a car-crash in slow motion. You can see the build-up to the dreadful things which are going to happen to the characters and you watch in fascination as your worst fears come to life. Martina Cole specialises in what might be described at brutal-realism. Her gang-land themes have the air of being written by someone who knows her topic inside-out, and she does not hesitate to give her readers inside-knowledge of every sort of vice and crime. Her characters are realistic and three-dimensional, and the law-abiding reader will wonder how people capable of such violent acts can at the same time exhibit loyalty and affection to each other and their family members. Martina Cole somehow enables the reader to feel sympathy for some of the more despicable of her characters, while at the same time feeling disgust at the things they do. Altogether a fast-paced read, scoring high points in the "unputdownable" category.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliantly realistic and shocking read, 7 Jan 2005
By 
Jules "policechick" (Hertforshire, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Know (Paperback)
My first but definitely not last Martina Cole book.
A story of the seedy underbelly of today's society set on a run-down council estate. Miss Cole paints a picture of what's it's like to scrape out a living and the kind of society that some of the poorest people live in.
The main characters in this story - Joanie and her family eek out an illegitimate living with always the hope that it will lead to something better until the unthinkable happens.
Every families nightmare - the abduction of a child. Martina Cole tells a tale of hear-wrenching emotion, determination, vengeance and fear. The descriptions are graphic, she pulls no punches and it paints a picture of life today that is all too common. You desperately want things to work out OK for this family and the ending is brilliantly done but I won't spoil the plotline for you by giving anything else away.
I read this in just about 5 days. It's one of those books that you really can't put down. Normally somebody who has two books on the go at any one time, this one grabbed my attention and I'll definitely be reading more of Martina Coles books.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Know ( Martina Cole), 10 Mar 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: The Know (Hardcover)
Wow. This is her best novel yet. An avid Martina Cole reader, I sometimes wonder if she can pull it off again or not. But she can!!
Joanie Brewer and her children, Jon Jon(18), Jeanette(14) and Kira(11) live in a run-down London Council estate. The two eldest are accustomed to crime and little Kira is innocent perfection. They are a close family but how will they cope when facing tradegy?
This book deals with the worst life can offer - child abduction, paedophiles and murder. But it also shows how family life can be pushed apart and thrown back together. Cole writes with brutal honesty but it's so delicately done that, despite the topics involved, you can't help but laugh at certain things.
It's a book that you won't be able to put down because each page has more to over than the last and you find yourself on an emotional rollarcoaster along with the truly realistic characters in the book.
I really enjoyed this book, however, some might find it difficult to begin with as the book has a slightly slow beginning, but this is the style Cole adopts. Once you get through the first few chapters you'll not want to put it down!!
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32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Best Seller, 1 Nov 2003
By 
cheryl (Manchester, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Know (Hardcover)
Martina can never write fast enough for me i can't wait for her next book as soon as i have finished her latest i am waiting for the next one, So again she pulls no punches with this book its hard hitting and very very realistic to what is happening in the world today, based around the criminal underworld she writes so well about, this book once again like her others will take you into the seedy world of prostitution, murder, drugs and other things ... read it for yourself :.
It is a powerful emotional book showing the strongest kind of love there is, a mothers love for her children,and how she felt powerless when her daughter Kira went missing and how both her siblings felt when she went missing, there are some suprises along the way.
This book took me 36 hrs to read i couldn't put it down,{looks at the dishes piled by the sink} i am going to take it on holiday with me and read it again. but this time at a slower pace.
Read it and enjoy it its another fantastic Martina Cole
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Martina Cole - The Know, 17 Nov 2003
By 
L Potter (Kent United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: The Know (Hardcover)
I have read most of Martina Coles other books and this one was as good if not better than some of the others. The story line in places was sad and really made me appreciate my own childhood. It is sad to think this sort of thing goes on. I had problems putting the book down as it really gripped me. Another Fantastic read coutesy of Martina Cole.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Praise for another excellent novel!, 28 Nov 2003
By 
Claire, Lulu "Lulu" (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Know (Hardcover)
I am a massive fan of Cole and eagerly anticipate all her novels. This one was no exception. From the first chapter this book grips you with coles style of writing with the usual brothels and gangland warfare.
This one as always has the unexpected twists and turns of an experienced novelist gripping the audience.
Joanie Brewer the lead character of the book is a prostitute with three children Jon Jon, Jenette and Kira, She would do anything for them including sell herself to make ends meat!
This book is packed full of interesting characters such as jon jon brewer joanies eldest son, paulie martin joanies pimp, these characters make up what is a believable and exciting plot set in the undergrowths of london.
Excellently written, gripping and worth every second waiting for it! Role on the next one!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Unbelievably bad, 5 Jan 2010
By 
Mr. N. Hunter (Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: The Know (Paperback)
Truly dreadful. A depressing tale about London low-life written in a style that mirrors the characters perfectly - unattractive, illiterate and acutely boring. Not helped that it takes 250 pages of drivel to achieve the glimmer of a plot. If you can finish this one you deserve a prize - the next one.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant introduction to Martina Cole, 3 April 2006
By 
O. Doyle "celticshedevil" (Ireland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Know (Paperback)
This was my first introduction to Martina Cole and I'm so glad I took the recommendation from Amazon to buy it.
The story is based on a council estate in the East End of London and centers around a prostitute with a heart of gold - Joanie Brewer. While she may have 3 kids by 3 different fathers they are the one constant in her life and she'd do anything for them. The eldest child is Jon Jon, the up-and-coming hard-man who takes the role of the man of the house. Jon Jon may be a gangster in the making but his greatest loyalty is to his family and the love and tenderness with which he treats his mother and sisters is in complete contrast to the side that those who cross him see. Jeanette is the spoilt brat who refuses to do anything without an argument and who shows no love or affection for her little sister, Kira, until it's too late. Kira is the baby of the family and although she's slower than most kids her age her sweetness is what endears her to everyone who meets her. When Kira goes missing everyone rallies round to help find her.
This book is a real page turner and seemingly inconsequential pieces of information all mesh together in the quick-fire ending. The characters are given real depth and you find yourself sucked in and turning pages for hours on end. I enjoyed every second of this book and can't wait to get my hands on another Martina Cole.....if her other books are half as good as this one I'll be impressed.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Martina does it again, 3 Nov 2003
By 
J. Walsh "joannejo90" (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Know (Hardcover)
There has not been one of Martinas books that hasnt't gripped me right from the word go and this is no exception. Joanie Brewer is a kind and big hearted prostitute who loves her children to distraction especially little Kira her youngest who is, maybe a little slow but a sweet and loving girl. Then suddenly Kira goes missing and Joanie has to find out what has happend to her.
The characters are large and real and right from page one you know Joanie and feel her pain as she delves into Londons underground to find out just what has happend to her innocent little girl.
If only Martina could write more than one book a year....life would be perfect!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldnt put it down....., 29 May 2006
This review is from: The Know (Paperback)
I read this after being given the book by my aunt. I am a big 'Lynda La Plante' fan, & thought that Martina Coles work sounded similar. Martina's work turned out to be more graphic & harrowing than Lynda, & 'The Know' was gripping. I am part way through 'The Graft' but am struggling to get in to it...a friend has told me it gets better .... much better.... so will try & percivere. The Know is fantstic though, if you like crime thrillers, you need to read this book.
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The Know by Martina Cole (Paperback - 5 July 2004)
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