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Sunday, October 16

31 Days of Halloween: Stalking Jack The Ripper




Jimmy Patterson; 330 pages; $18.99; Amazon
The identity of Jack the Ripper is still one of the biggest murder mysteries of all time. While there are plenty of theories, the 1888-1891 Whitechapel murders have still gone unsolved.

Today, Jack the Ripper is more of a legend. There have been countless non-fiction titles written about the murders, as well as several fictionalized stories based on the killer. There has also been movies, mini-series, and television series made about Jack the Ripper.

My fascination with Jack the Ripper started when I read a non-fiction middle-grade book about the Whitechapel killings when I was in elementary school during the early 1990s. So, naturally, I was interested in reading the young adult horror-thriller Stalking Jack The Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco, which is the first non-written James Patterson title to be released under Mr. Patterson's new children book imprint Jimmy Patterson Books.

Set in the Fall of 1888 in England, Stalking Jack The Ripper centers on Audrey Rose Wadsworth, a teenager with a sort-of-fetish for the dead. Yep, instead of learning how to be ladylike, Audrey would rather be in a morgue cutting up cadavers with Uncle Jonathan, a professor at Harrow School for Boys. Just like her uncle, she is fascinated with the Whitechapel killings.

Despite a warning from her father to stay away from her Uncle's work, Audrey dresses up as a young man attends one of her uncle's classes. This is where she meets Thomas, a young student who is also obsessed with the Whitechapel murders.

After Uncle Jonathan is accused and arrested for being Jack the Ripper, Audrey must work with Thomas and her brother Nathaniel to help convince the authorities that her uncle is innocent of the crimes. Of course the only way to save her uncle from being hanged is for her to find the real murderer.

Final Thoughts: Beginning with the first sentence, I was hooked into the author's unique, detailed narration. The main character, Audrey, is very likeable and will appeal to all readers. The descriptions throughout the novel are very detailed, giving us readers a glimpse of what life was like in 1888 London.

If you're looking for a historical accurate fictional story, well, you're not going to find one here. The author clearly states in the back of the novel that there were several historical inaccuracies made on purpose as they helped enriched the plot and served the characters better.

Overall, I enjoyed reading Stalking Jack The Ripper. It's a fast-paced, well-written horror-thriller that will be perfect to read around Halloween.



*I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own.



About the Author: Kerri Maniscalco grew up in a semi-haunted house outside New York City, where her fascination with gothic settings began. In her spare time she reads everything she can get her hands on, cooks all kinds of food with her family and friends, and drinks entirely too much tea while discussing life's finer points with her cats. Stalking Jack the Ripper is her debut novel. It incorporates her love of forensic science and unsolved history.



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