STALKING JACK THE RIPPER by Kerri Maniscalco

STALKING JACK THE RIPPER

Age Range: 15 - 18
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Audrey Rose Wadsworth, 17, would rather perform autopsies in her uncle’s dark laboratory than find a suitable husband, as is the socially acceptable rite of passage for a young, white British lady in the late 1800s.

The story immediately brings Audrey into a fractious pairing with her uncle’s young assistant, Thomas Cresswell. The two engage in predictable rounds of “I’m smarter than you are” banter, while Audrey’s older brother, Nathaniel, taunts her for being a girl out of her place. Horrific murders of prostitutes whose identities point to associations with the Wadsworth estate prompt Audrey to start her own investigation, with Thomas as her sidekick. Audrey’s narration is both ponderous and polemical, as she sees her pursuit of her goals and this investigation as part of a crusade for women. She declares that the slain aren’t merely prostitutes but “daughters and wives and mothers,” but she’s also made it a point to deny any alignment with the profiled victims: “I am not going as a prostitute. I am simply blending in.” Audrey also expresses a narrow view of her desired gender role, asserting that “I was determined to be both pretty and fierce,” as if to say that physical beauty and liking “girly” things are integral to feminism. The graphic descriptions of mutilated women don’t do much to speed the pace.

Perhaps a more genuinely enlightened protagonist would have made this debut more engaging. (Historical thriller. 15-18)

Pub Date: Sept. 20th, 2016
ISBN: 978-0-316-27349-7
Page count: 336pp
Publisher: Jimmy Patterson/Little, Brown
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2016




OUR CRITICS' TAKES ON MORE BESTSELLERS

See full list >
Cover art for THANK YOU FOR BEING LATE
VERDICT:
BUY IT
Cover art for TESTIMONY
VERDICT:
BUY IT
Cover art for BORN A CRIME
VERDICT:
BORROW IT
Cover art for ODESSA SEA
VERDICT:
BORROW IT

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenRIPPER by Amy Carol Reeves
by Amy Carol Reeves
ChildrenDARK TRIUMPH by Robin LaFevers
by Robin LaFevers
ChildrenTHE SHATTERING by Karen Healey
by Karen Healey