Close by Martina Cole
I took Close by Martina Cole with me on a recent holiday to Portugal. I had only read one of Martina Cole’s books before. That was “The Family”. I figured that with over 600 pages this book would probably keep me going for a week.. However, like “The Family” this book, “Close” deals with the progression of a family over several decades and is a real page-turner.
Lily Diamond is the matriarch of the family who marries Patrick Brodie when she is very young. It allows her to escape from a poor and dreadful home life. Brodie is determined to make something of himself. He intends to make his name in a seedy under world and knows exactly how far he’ll go to get what he wants. He wants to be at the top of the tree.
Before long, Patrick has taken out the old guard of the criminal underworld in a calculating and ruthless manner. He has become a legend in his own time. Such legends don’t go for marriage, children, or love. However, when he meets Lily Diamond, she gets deep under his skin. All Patrick can think about is making her happy and keeping her safe.
They settle down in London, England and have a family, and determine that their children will not have to face the same kind of hardships they did. They endeavour to ensure that children want for nothing.
Then the unthinkable happens, Patrick is brutally murdered in front of the whole family and Lily is left on her own to look after their family in a cruel and dangerous world. It is a world where you can trust no one. She uses all her talents and skills to guide them through difficult times. The Brodie family must stay close to survive but families can get too close.
I really enjoyed this novel. It is racy, sometimes brutal but never dull. Do not read it if you are prudish or easily offended. However, if you like an exciting story with lots of twists and strands, this is well worth reading.