Genres: Young Adult
on September 20th 2016
Published by jimmy patterson Source: Publisher
Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord's daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.
Against her stern father's wishes and society's expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle's laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.
Jack the Ripper is one of the most well-known serial killers in history. During the Fall of 1888 several woman were found murdered in the lower East End of London, throats slashed and organs missing. To this day we still don’t know who Jack the Ripper was or exactly how many woman he murdered. They say there were only 5 but no one can say for sure. Sounds like a great story right? IT IS! Kerri Maniscalco added the perfect amount of history and mixed it with the right amount of fiction to create a fantastical world that housed Jack the Ripper.
Audrey Rose Wadsworth is one of those characters you can not help but love. She is strong-willed, knows what she wants and lets face it, she is a bad ass. Audrey Rose is obsessed with science and forensic medicine and she is determined to learn everything she can from her uncle. Working in her uncle’s laboratory she comes across one of Jack’s first victims. Intrigued at first, Audrey Rose begins her own investigation with the help of swoon worthy Thomas Cresswell. As the number of murders begins to grow Audrey Rose gets more and more angry and vows to end Jack the Ripper even if that means she could destroy everything she knows and loves.
Stalking Jack the Ripper definitely has all the factors needed to create a creepy reading atmosphere, it would definitely be a good Halloween read! Blood and gore: Check. Things that go bump in the night: Check. Suspense: Check. I’ve never claimed to be squeamish but some of Maniscalco’s descriptions of the bodies is down right gruesome. Sawing open craniums, ripping apart rib cages, thrusting ungloved hands into torsos. Gross. Without spoiling anything there were a few other literary characters in the book worth a mention (Frankenstein) that added to the story. I got the Sherlock vibe from Thomas. Extremely smart, lack of social niceties and observant as hell. I did have to laugh when he was flirting with Audrey Rose, she couldn’t ever be sure if he was actually flirting or just poking fun. I could totally see this turned into a T.V. show (come on BBC!) and of course I would tune in week after week.
Overall I enjoyed the book. Why just 3 1/2 stars then you ask? Well, I thought the book moved a bit slowly. At the beginning I was interested, toward the middle I found myself struggling to keep focused on the story, my mind kept wandering. Then I figured out who Jack was pretty early on, which didn’t totally kill it for me. There were plenty of other surprises but they were all lumped together at the end. I do really love how Maniscalco ended the book. As readers we know who Jack is but they never reveal his identity to the press, makes me wonder if that happened back in 1888.
What do you think? Is Stalking Jack the Ripper a book for you?