Two Women
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Two Women

4.22 of 5 stars 4.22  ·  rating details  ·  1,961 ratings  ·  93 reviews
Danger and violence have always been part of Sue Dalston’s East End upbringing. Unloved by her mother, abused by her father, and brutalised throughout her entire marriage, she smashed her husband's skull in a final act of desperation. All that keeps her sane is knowing that she’s done it to protect her four children. At last, they are safe from harm. When she is celled up...more
Kindle Edition, 640 pages
Published (first published October 7th 1999)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Two Women, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Two Women

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,805)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
[Two Women] being the first book I have read by author Martina Cole has made a great impression on me. I now have a new author to read who's books shed light on other parts of society that some of us are blind to. The book begins with an introduction to Susan on her way to a new prison while she works on her appeal with her Solicitor. It is revealed that Susan is in prison for the murder of her husband, Barry, and that she does not regret what she has done.

After the Prologue [introduction] the b...more
Kelly Tennant
At first I felt I wouldn't get into and enjoy the book but I was very wrong. Its brutality is hard to take, I don't think it will be for everyone, and I felt it was a little formulaic at times. However by telling the story and developing the characters in such a way the end was incredible, I struggled to put it down. The story is about so much more than the brutal side of life, which it first appears about. The characters are real, it was about the good that come from depravity, the lengths peop...more
Jillean Whyte
Giving it 2 stars as the title is misleading, as it really focus on the horrific story of Susan Dalston, raped and abused by first her father, then her husband. She is a product of her own environment living in the east end (Eastenders it ain't). The story is horrific and gripping and I'm sure even today 2014, there are many Susan Daltsons living the same kind of life today. You cannot help but feel sorry for Susan but at the same time screaming at the choices she makes. However she finds the st...more
Louise Jennings
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This is the first Martina Cole novel I have read and I will most definitely be reading another. She painted a very vivid and brutal picture of life in the east end with powerful characters that kept me turning the page. I didnt even notice the thickness of the book because I was too immersed in the story. Not for those of you who are easily offended by violence and extreme bad language.
Monica Akinyi Odhiambo
This book had me crying and frustrated but I loved the ending, Martina Cole did this novel justice.At times I felt like what happened to Susan was so depressing.Married a useless man who used to beat her up, the torture and torment of always been on the edge.A man who would look at other women, sleep with them and dump them.Gave her their only daughter a venereal disease, honestly even I would have killed him meself.
These women are seriously strong but naive.I guess in that era things were done...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lauren Maunsell
Loved it, loved it, loved it! I couldn't put it down- read the whole thing in 3 days! Completely gripping, Martina draws you right into the story.
Absolutely brilliant, the twists and turns made this a really good read. What a woman will go through for her family...
There are no words that could describe this book. It blew my mind.. And it's my first of Martina Cole's books, and it definitely won't be the last .

Two Women was a very graphical and sad book. It still captured me because I wanted to find out what happens in the end. Will Sue finally find justice, will she ever acquire a happy life, or will she always be repressed in her dark and dangerous life. Martina Cole was able to answer all of these question with her smooth and great writing.

I don't know...more
Two Women Two Women had been on my wishlist for several years and when I found a cheap copy on sale a few weeks ago I thought it was high time I actually read the damn thing. Although crime-mysteries aren't usually my thing, I've been reading quite a few of them lately, and this one particularly appealled to me as it sounded more like an insight into the lives of women in prison.

Aaaaand this is the bit where I tell you if you have this book on your TBR/wishlist because you think that's what it i...more
Book Addict Shaun
An absolute doorstop of a book but what else would you expect from Martina? But unlike some of her other work not a single page was wasted and after a slow couple of days I went from 30% read on my Kindle on Saturday morning to finished early this morning (not in one sitting!) because I couldn't stop reading and wanted to see how everything turned out and I was not disappointed. The ending of this book was fantastic. After reading Mandasue Heller's Two Faced and being left disappointed I wanted...more
Clive Thompson
Susan Dalston, the prologue tells us, has murdered her husband, is in prison and is being transferred between prisons pending an appeal against her sentence. This is an appeal that she doesn't intend to go through with, it's just a means of getting closer to her family for a few weeks to make visits easier.

As is quite usual with Martina Cole novels, we find out the ending, or near ending, in the prologue and the rest of the novel takes us from an early point, through a desparately hard life to t...more
Jemma Bow
My fist Martina Cole book though certainly not my last! I thought the book was set up very well and the setting was superbly believable. The only negative thing I have to say is that it is an extremely emotionally heavy book. The main character's plight is so heartbreaking that I had to break my reading sessions up as it had me so depressed. This isn't, however, a criticism of the author or the writing however, just an emotional warning.
This is the sixth book I have read by this author and they just get better and better. They are very powerful books - very graphic and the language is not for the fainthearted but she paints a picture of East End London that is very real. She writes about the criminal underworld just as it is and each book just gets better.

Back Cover Blurb:
Danger and violence have always been part of Sue Dalston's East End upbringing. Unloved by her mother, abused by her father, and brutalised throughout her ent...more
Yet another Martina cole book that grabbed me from the start, I couldn't wait to finish work to get home and read more. The book starts with Susan arriving at prison when it is revealed she is in prison for murdering a husband. About 75% of the book takes you through Susan's life and gives the reader in a different life living in the east end. The last part of the book talks of Susan's experience in prison. I don't necessarily feel the title reflects story accurately as her cell mate has a small...more
Sami Lewis
For Martina this was ok but not her best work. It was a bit predictable, even down to the incest. Reminded me a bit of a Catherine Cookson type of tale. It's about wanna be gangsters down trodden wives which did make me question why Martina has to have the women as victims in a lot of her books with the occasional feminist popping up.
Someone suggested I read Martina Cole for her 'gritty realism'. If this is gritty realism, then I have clearly led a very sheltered life! I found the non-stop violence and rape secenes repulsive, and the book did not have many other redeeming features. Are East End gangsters and prostitutes really all cliched cardboard cut out characters? And everyone seemed to undergo radical personality changes in order to bring the story to a happy ending. But worst of all, the story was supposed to be about...more
A gritty, hard hitting novel set in the 60,s & onwards, plenty of disturbing scenario,s. The main character Susan was a typical east-end girl who was abused by her father & then her gangland husband. Heart wrenching at times this is a story of a womans life of abuse and the deep love for her children and the lengths she would go to protect them.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I really wanted to enjoy this book. It had so many great reviews. Intact all of Martina Coles books do. However she's just not for me. This was the first and last book of hers that I have read. I actually didn't even finish the book. I hate how it would jump to things happening or certain things would be said in the book and I had no idea how the characters got there and I had no idea what was going on. I can read a lot of gruesome stuff but I cannot read child rape. It's just too much for me. I...more
Brutal and violent story set in the East End of London. Martina Cole paints a very vivid picture of the seedier side of life in London. You can smell the blood and feel the rage.
Cat Jones
Brilliant....Couldn`t put the book down, My first Martina Cole Book & I absolutely loved it
Martina Cole writes good, meaty stories that you can really get into. This one is another example of following a story with all its ups and downs of typical East End woe and grit post second world war. The story moves fast and you can really see the characters and how they live their lives. I enjoyed the strength that Susan had after having her children, prior to that her character was horribly weak and not someone I could feel for. This is a good summer holiday read because it's quite long and...more
Pitt Burk
Brilliant. If you like Martina Cole, she has deliverd once again.
Donna Nicoll
The best of her books for me!
Read it in 4 days, loved it
Amanda-jayne Williams
Thoroughly enjoyed this book! It had me gripped from the start.
This book was amazing! The author has an incredible insight into the depraved lives of her characters. Cole builds her characters so that there is no possible way to forget who is who. The setting of East London beginning in the sixties serves as the perfect backdrop for the wicked adventure that unfolds. Your heart will break, you'll scream, cry and cheer the entire way through. This is my first Martina Cole read, but certainly not my last!
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 93 94 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Scarlet Women (Annie Carter #3)
  • Snatched
  • The Schemer
  • Dishonour
  • An Outrageous Affair
  • Faith
  • Loner
  • The Surrogate (Brennan & Esposito, #1)
  • Turnstone (DI Joe Faraday, #1)
  • Crystal
  • At My Mother's Knee...: and other low joints
  • Betrayed
Martina Cole was born and brought up in Essex. She is the bestselling author of fourteen novels set in London's gangland, and her most recent three paperbacks have gone straight to No. 1 in the Sunday Times on first publication. Total sales of Martina's novels stand at over eight million copies.

More about Martina Cole...
The Ladykiller The Take Dangerous Lady (Maura Ryan, #1) The Runaway Maura's Game (Maura Ryan, #2)

Share This Book