Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco
Published by Jimmy Patterson on September 20, 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mystery
Pages: 336 Format: ARC Source: BEA
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.
I acquired this ARC from the publisher at Book Expo America. This does not impact my thoughts and opinions in any way.
What makes for better inspiration than murders that have never been solved? To this day the deaths committed by Jack the Ripper incite theories and conversation. It’s a mystery that will continue to haunt the history books. The curiosity will never fade though and in Kerri Maniscalco’s Stalking Jack the Ripper, Audrey Rose Wadsworth takes her turn at solving the case. With a worried family, mentor uncle, and an interesting young man in tow, will she be able to make a difference?
Audrey Rose Wadsworth thrilled and surprised me from start to finish. She’s independent and outspoken in a society that prefers women demure and unassuming. She goes against her father’s wishes, spends most of her time covered in gore, yet still enjoys the finer things like clothing and appearance. The dynamic between her and Thomas Cresswell, an attractive young man working with her uncle, is very Holmes/Watson, filled with scientific questioning and witty banter. I loved it!!!
As someone who watched a ton of crime shows in my teenage years, it’s wonderful that this YA novel is tackling forensic science and medicine! Right from the start we see Audrey learning her craft; making incisions, taking samples, and studying dead bodies. Blood, guts, gore, and all. It’s so refreshing to see the gritty details of it play out on the page. Even the research behind it, chronicling and experimenting to make discoveries. I’m totally here for scientific ladies!
At the heart of it all is, of course, Jack the Ripper, the Whitechapel murders, and Victorian London. Grisly murders with so much mystery surrounding them taking place in the seedy underbelly of a burgeoning city. It’s perfect for a creepy narrative filled with twists and turns. Maniscalco weaves her characters into the very heart of the case, attempting to assist the investigation and help discover the perpetrator. The stakes are high and the danger feels very real.
Overall Stalking Jack the Ripper is an excellent debut for Kerri Maniscalco and a brilliant start for a series. With lively characters like Audrey and Thomas and a unique focus on early forensic science and medicine, this story will pull the reader in right from the beginning. Plus the Ripper investigation makes for a perfect mix of fact and fiction that sets the tone. I absolutely loved this story and hope readers pick it up far and wide!
So are you excited for Stalking Jack the Ripper? Are you fascinated with the unsolved case? In love with these main characters? Looking forward to the next one? Let me know in the comments below!