Book Reviews · YA Historical Fiction · YA Thriller/Scary

Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco (4⭐)

From Goodreads

Presented by James Patterson’s new children’s imprint, this deliciously creepy horror novel has a storyline inspired by the Ripper murders and an unexpected, blood-chilling conclusion…

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.


I’m a total marshmallow when it comes to all things spooky, scary, and thrilling. I worked at a movie theater when the movie Sinister 2 came out, and while checking on the theater I screamed bloody murder when I walked into a jump scene. (Yes, the whole theater laughed.) Naturally, I was skeptical about reading a book that was spooky, scary, and/or thrilling. Despite my reservations, I. Loved. This. Book.

Maniscalco puts a riveting spin on the classic unsolved mystery of Jack the Ripper. Though I can honestly say I knew the identity of Jack the Ripper the entire time (I wasn’t spoiled, I swear!), I had ZERO idea about Jack’s motives. She had me guessing until the very moment his motives were revealed. With so many books being obvious, I’m glad I wasn’t able to guess too much in this one.

And let’s be honest, I only guessed the identity because I put my author cap on for a second then got lucky with the guess. And let’s also be honest, if I was wrong in the end I would have thrown the book and not finished the last couple pages JUST because I fell in love with my idea. Super petty, I know.

I wanted so badly to give this book fives stars. Why did I not? While I completely loved the premise, characters, and plot line of this novel, I just kept thinking something was missing. Now, usually I know what that is. “Oh, the author should have done better world building…should have build suspense better…” whatever. But this time, I have no idea! I thought and thought and thought and I have no idea. It was suspenseful. I was entrap. I was rooting for all the right characters, booing the wrong ones. But something was missing. Something could have been more in the book.

I already purchased the second book, and I am eager to read it! Stayed tuned for the review of Hunting Prince Dracula.

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