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Dangerous Lady

(Maura Ryan #1)

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  4,436 ratings  ·  147 reviews
No one thinks a seventeen-year-old girl can take on the hard men of London's gangland, but it's a mistake to underestimate Maura Ryan: she's tough, clever and beautiful —and she's determined that nothing will stand in her way. Which makes her one very dangerous lady.
Together, she and her brother Michael are unbeatable: the Queen and King of organised crime, they run the pu
Paperback, 566 pages
Published 2005 by Headline (first published 1992)
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4.32  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,436 ratings  ·  147 reviews

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W.H. Johnson
Jul 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
I’ll tell what I was going to say when I finished this book, my first Martina Cole gangland novel. I had it in mind to muse on the fact that she is a best-selling author, that she certainly knows the world of crime and criminals and that she is without any doubt a compelling story teller. Dangerous Lady absolutely zips along and the reader is drawn into a gripping crime story, a crime saga, dealing as it does with the Ryans, an East End criminal family, over a period of thirty years. It’s a tale ...more
Mar 28, 2011 rated it it was ok
If I were 17 I think this book would have been perfect. Blow my mind in pieces and I would probably go to London and find myself an Irish boyfriend. Hohoho! Just yeah, not entirely 17 anymore and although this books smells like teen spirit, it smells as well like once upon a time gorgeous mister Harold Robbins and once upon a time irresistible mister Sidney Sheldon.

Well Martina Cole would have smelled even better if I were still 17. I think I will never forget Jennifer Parker from Sheldon's 'Ra
Jun 26, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A very easy read, which stopped me from abandoning the book before finishing. I was curious about why Martina Cole books are so successful, and wanted to read a full novel. The story had no twists, and was very repetitive. The advance signposting of events took away any suspense - it felt like a soap opera rather than a thriller. There were gruesome bits, but nothing thrilling, and in some cases it was repetitive. Sometimes events that could have been a whole book in themselves (e.g. the ice cre ...more
Feb 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
I love this author's books - very gutsy and powerful.

Back Cover Blurb:
No one thinks a seventeen year old girl can take on the hard men of London's gangland, but its a mistake to underestimate Maura Ryan: she's tough, clever and beautiful - and she's determined that nothing will stand in her way.
Together, she and her brother Michael are unbeatable: the Queen and King of organised crime. But notoriety has its price. The police are determined to put away Maura once and for all - and not everyone in
Dec 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Well that was some rollercoaster ride & boy what a thrill ride it was too. This book was quite the page turner, loved it from start to finish. Great story plot & amazing characters. Edge of seat with anticipation of what will happen next. What more could u want. It truly was a fantastic read.

This was my first ever read of Martina Cole, but it so won't be the last. I'm looking forward to reading all of her books now.
I read this back in 2007 when my thoughts were that while I felt the style of this book wasn't what I expected, I thoroughly enjoyed it & felt I would certainly read more.

Sadly all the other of Cole's books I've read since, maybe 2 0r 3 of them, have been pretty much identical, full of cold-hearted vicious thugs with no redeeming features so I don't read them anymore.
Zoe Hall
Apr 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-stars, martina-cole
This is the Martina Cole I know and love. I thought I’d go back and read some old school Martina and I wasn’t disappointed. Violence and control prevail here. A story of vengeance, violence and visceral crime. A few chapters had me actually wincing a bit. I haven’t experienced that for a long time.

A very good read. One of my favourites of Martina’s. Maura is an interesting character (and one of my preferred female leads of recent reads). I look forward to reading the sequel!
Sandra Harvey
Mar 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another brilliant book by Martina Cole.
Feb 17, 2009 rated it really liked it
Engrossing read by an author who always provides vibrant characters and twisty plots. This is the first book about Maura Ryan, the youngest child in an impoverished Irish family whose fortunes improve when the eldest, Michael, becomes London's king of the underworld. This is as much about sibling loyalty and rivalry as it is about crime, and it's all very well done.
Dec 16, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Excellent Britsh saga about a criminal firm run by the Ryan family.
Jul 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing
if you like a book that keeps you hooked but has those moments where your not sure you want to keep reading this is the one for you
Jun 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
This book started my long obsession with Martina Cole...great gritty stuff. Mobs, drugs, crime, sex,'s got it all! Love Martina Cole and this book was amazing!! Couldn't put it down!
Mar 27, 2013 rated it it was ok
took too long for the end to come
Jodie Louise
Jul 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review contains slight spoilers into the story.

Martina Cole is a name we have grown up with in our house. My mum has read Martina Cole's books for as long as I can remember and every Christmas my Dad has bought her Cole's new release as a gift. Since getting back into reading in my late teens she has tried relentlessly to get me to read her books. After me and my Boyfriend watched Tom Hardy's film Legend, centred around the notorious Kray twins I fancied a crime/ gangster novel so thought

May 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
So at the beginning of the year, my Wife and I decided that we would each pick a book from our own collection and let the other read it. I gave her a Star Wars book and she gave me Dangerous Lady. It's not my typical read and now that I have read it, I couldn't be happier that she picked this one for me.

So I give it 4 stars (it's really 4.5...wish we could do half stars on this site). I'll start with what I didn't like that kept it from getting that last half star. There are huge gaps in time in
Zara KindKonfetti
Jan 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was my first Martina Cole novel and I went in open minded but really not expecting much. What I got was something truly masterful.

Cole walks us through the lives of the Ryans, from the birth of Maura to her climb to being the biggest badass name in London and beyond. Maura blasts through glass ceilings at a time when women were expected to stay home and have babies in a world dominated by men. But she does so through her work, her cleverness, and her getting stuck right in.

We also get to
Nov 18, 2018 rated it liked it
I doubt I will read a second installment of this series, but I am glad I read this first one. The description of the book is far more interesting than the actual book is. I appreciated the number of years this story covers in Maura's life, her brutality mixed with a softer side, and how she sought to move the family business into more legal ventures. Naturally, the happily-ever-after was a bonus.
jeannette allerston

Absolutely amazing ,this book takes you in from the first page and what a rollercoaster of a ride 10/10 Martina Cole and the audio with this book is also brilliant brilliantly read 5 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 on to the next book , I read theses book when they first came out and reading them again awesome, I feel that I know each and every character in theses book, thank you Martina for all the time and hard work that you put into all your books 📚
Jenny Thompson
Aug 11, 2018 rated it liked it
I’ve read quite a few Martina Cole books lately as I inherited loads of books when my Grandma died. She was a fan of Martina Cole. I’m not one to leave a story unread so I’ve been reading them, but apart from the ‘Lady Killer’ series, I can’t say I’ve been impressed. This one was different though and it kept me gripped. If you’re a fan of the whole gangland genre, then I’d definitely recommend it. And she only used the word ‘skullduggery’ once in this story......
Jorgen Lundgren
Mar 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, fiction
This book stands out from many others. One it's about crime and love, second it's about human transformation and third it's about a large family and all the intriguing events in and around them. First book I read by Martina Cole but not the last one, not a quick read it takes some time to get through it. Enjoy.
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The first Martina Cole book I read and I was not disappointed. Maura Ryan is one hard nosed, don't mess with me, 17 year old. She is one to be reckoned with. Some people find out the hard way. A must read the only thing with this author is the bad language was initially a shock. But I suppose with the east end gangster theme I got use to it quick
Oct 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Heard a lot about Martina Cole. Every book shop highlights her books saying its the best blah blah. So picked the very first one "Dangerous Lady". To be very honest, I did not find this book as great as everyone says. Its a good read, normal crime thriller but nothing that makes you say "WOW". A simple crime story without many twists etc. Even the climax was bit lame.

3 Stars.

Jul 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I decided to try this as I had always heard of Martina Cole but never thought it would be something I would fancy. My gran and some friends raved about her so I decided to give her a go. I'm so glad I did as she's a fantastic writer and I loved the characters created and really was hooked. Gutted it took me so long to read one but glad to have finally got round to it.
christine watmough
Dangerous Iady

This is only the second Martina Cole book I have read, the first being Two Women. I couldn't put them down. I'm now hooked on this fantastic author. They are fast paced, interesting and now I cannot wait to see what happens to Maura and Terry.
Jul 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

A real page turner I enjoyed every bit of this book, Martina Cole has been recommended to me by many people now I have bitten the bullet I am hooked!!
I look forward to making the long journey through the words of Martina cole.
Oct 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
This was my first Martina Cole and I really don't think they'll be a second, I couldn't get my head around the extreme violence running alonside the soppy romance between Maura and the policeman.
One was enough, thanks.
Darl Judd
I thought this book was well written and entertaining. People who confuse bedtime entertainment reading with great lirerature would not agree nor would I rate it on that level. It's a quick read that kept me engaged and was certainly worth the price.^
anne cummins
May 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brilliant as usual from Martina Cole, another one of her couldn't put down books.

Brilliant as usual from Martina Cole, another of her couldn't put down books. Well for Martina Cole, a rivioting read.
Jun 24, 2017 rated it liked it
Gripping to read, and perfect by the poolside!
Michelle Feeney
Jul 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My first crime read many years ago! Loved the story of Moria Ryan
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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.

Other books in the series

Maura Ryan (2 books)
  • Maura's Game (Maura Ryan, #2)
“Maura had never dreamt that she could feel like she felt at this moment. She had indeed burnt her boats. But she smiled while she did it.” 0 likes
“She sighed. Children were a bind really. You loved them but they never seemed to be out of your life. Wherever they were they demanded your time and energy.” 0 likes
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