Review: Stalking Jack the Ripper

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.

The story’s shocking twists and turns, augmented with real, sinister period photos, will make this dazzling, #1 New York Times bestselling debut from author Kerri Maniscalco impossible to forget.

This book was an experience. It’s weird that something could be so gorey but also SO ADORABLE. So, I think we all know that I adore a good historical fiction novel, especially those that include adorable boys with suspenders, and super tough chicks who kick butt in their petticoats. And, Stalking Jack the Ripper was right up this alley.

I was hesitant to pick this novel up. It looked like it was going to lean towards the more…disturbing side of the gothic genre (which it did a bit, and I will cover that later on). However, it really just beautifully incorporated some real history (Jack the Ripper) with some great classic literature (Frankenstein). This was a great mashup of history, classic literature, and original spunk.

So, there was a darker side to this story. The main character is into forensic studies–specifically coronary art. The scenes describing this, to be honest, were a bit much for me. They were a bit graphic as far as the whole “describing people’s innards, etc. etc.” but the science surrounding it was well research and interesting. The way the mystery was investigated through these forensic sciences was fascinating, in an almost Sherlock way. But, again, it was pretty gorey (and I skipped over a lot of it haha, I don’t like blood) so I would not recommend this for younger audiences.

Overall, I adored this novel, and am currently reading the sequel. If you are a lover of creative retellings, this will be right up your alley! The characters were intriguing, the mystery was FANTASTIC (it was one of the first plot twists that really tricked me in awhile) and it had a wonderful fast paced style. If you can get over the gore (or just skip those scenes like me haha) this is a wonderful piece of YA historical fiction!

3.5 out of 5 stars.


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