Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco

Blurb: 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.

Let me start by asking you a few questions: Are you a fan of Sherlock Holmes? Is Silence of the Lambs one of your all time favorite movies? Do you like stories that run solely on adrenaline and suspense with a dash of sizzling romance? Do you like diving into eras gone past in more ways than one? Well if the answer to any of those questions is yes then I highly recommend this amazing book.

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If you are a psycho-killer-tale buff like me you must have heard of Jack the Ripper, a notorious serial killer who terrorized Victorian London during the Nineteenth century, this book centers around him. Our Protagonist is a well-born seventeen year old lady named Audrey Rose. Oh, how I loved her! She is a twenty first century woman trapped in the Victorian era. She is fierce and intelligent and hell bent on breaking molds the society is set upon confining her sex to. She aspires to make her career in forensic science, her first love remains not lacy dresses but shiny scalpels. The way she gets involved with the ripper case and uncovers the mystery with her companion Thomas was truly a joy ride to behold, It was so thrilling!

Speaking of Thomas…well, you might pick this book up because of its intriguing premise but you will come back to it again and again because of Mr. Thomas Cresswell. He was…I don’t have words. I am so darn smitten! Cocky, funny, witty, intense, intelligent, brave…you name the quality and this man had it! He was at times a little infuriating and difficult to read but all of that went so well with the intrigue-vibe this books had going on that it was a non-issue. Together he and Audrey made such a good team! Their chemistry was off the charts.

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The Victorian London with its foggy atmosphere, strict society mannerisms and pompous society was a nice added touch too. Wandering in those alleys stalking the Ripper alongside Audrey was one of the highlights of this book for me.  It wasn’t all sundry though. There were portions that lagged a bit, where I felt the writer could have done away without using as many sentences as she did but all in all the amazing parts overshadowed the not-so-spectacular ones. The book promises thrill and it delivers. The eerie atmosphere of fog coated London along with the infamous character of Jack the Ripper teamed up with the simulating conversations between Audrey and Thomas and the feminist undertones, made this book was all I was looking for.

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Fair warning, If you are squeamish about gore, intestines spilling out, bodies being flaked and dismembered beyond belief, descriptions of horrific things on every other page then this might not be a pleasant read for you. But if you are as obsessed with serial killers and psychopaths as I am this would be a perfect Halloween read.

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