GONE BAD continues the story from BAD APPLE, an East End gangster thriller, of Star Cleary, Mary, who manages the Nine-to-Five Shelter with Star’s help, and the gang war between the Beaneys, who are rumoured to finance the shelter, and the Swann gang… A war that escalates out of control with devastating consequences for all concerned.
Star Cleary’s life, following the death of her beloved father, becomes a nightmare. As far as the police are concerned, she is still in the frame for the murder of Lily Henderson, and worse is to come. She is being blackmailed by Shaun Sawle, the contact man who set up the Henderson hit. Sawle has arranged another hit. Big money is at stake and Star finds herself with no alternative but to take on the contract. Further pressure is brought to bear on Star by her selfishly self-centred mother, Stephanie, this time in the form of emotional blackmail.
Be careful what you wish for, it is said. Star would know better than to wish for anything, although Mary might have been tempted to make this mistake when her feckless Irish nephew, Brian, who is on the run from the Garda, suddenly turns up on the shelter’s front doorstep, seeking refuge. He and Mary share a secret so terrible that Mary’s life ultimately hangs in the balance, and it is on the strength of this shared secret that Brian blackmails his aunt to get him a job with Krait Beaney, the boss of the Beaney gang… Something Brian wished for, but would have done better to think through first, and was later to regret.
Vicky Swann and her daughter, Libby, don’t just make the mistake of wishing for something, they take the steps necessary to ensure that they get it by arranging for Johnnie “the Boot” Swann, to be murdered while he and Vicky are on their honeymoon in the Caribbean. Libby Swann takes over the Swann gang from her father, and then sets about making a catalogue of mistakes, not least of which is thinking that she is Krait Beaney’s equal and that by bringing pressure to bear, he will agree to a merger between the two gangs.
The East End Nine-to-Five Shelter story isn’t going to end there. There will be more to come of the shelter, Star and the detective from the Met, who loves her and tries to protect her, and the ever-increasing hostilities between the Beaney and Swann gangs. It is going to get messy!