Thursday, 12 April 2012

Review: Ripper by Amy Carol Reeves

Ripper by Amy Carol Reeves
4 out of 5 stars

Published April 8th by Flux Books
ARC received through Netgalley

As the title suggests, Ripper is about the infamous serial killer Jack the Ripper. But it's not you average historical young-adult novel; it has a paranormal twist.

After the death of her mother, Abbie Sharp moves from Dublin to London to live with her grandmother. Because she is quite rebellious, her grandmother orders her to work at the Whitechapel Hospital. The hospital is located in one of the poorest parts of London and treats prostitutes and their children for free. But then the former patients start to get brutally murdered - and Abbie is getting disturbing visions.

I really liked the creepiness factor of Ripper. The ending really freaked me out - I didn't dare to continue reading it at night. Of course there is the gruesomeness of the murders itself. It isn't very much focussed on, for which I was glad. For those of you that aren't very familiar with the Whitechapel Murders; these women weren't just killed, they were butchered. There are pictures out there, if you have a stomach for it. I was glad there wasn't that much detailing going on about the murders, otherwise this book wouldn't possibly be rated as young-adult.

Ripper basically is an alternate history kind of thing featuring Jack the Ripper. I loved how the paranormal interwove with the actual events, how the victims had the same names as in reality but different stories and characters. I did a little background research to see how close the happenings in the book are to the real ones, and I have to give Ms Reeves a big thumbs-up. The victims are killed in the same places, yet somehow it fits perfectly into the story. I loved these little details.

Abbie is a great character, but I couldn't always identify with her emotions and actions. Sometimes I felt as if she was too kick-ass, and sometimes too much of a damsel-in-distress. One of my biggest issues was the love-triangle. The triangle in itself was okay, but she choose the wrong one. I hate it when that happens! I was completely rooting for the other guy.

Overall Ripper is a very enjoyable read, and I would recommend it for the historical mystery fans. It starts out very light on the paranormal, but it gets a bit heavier throughout the story. If the love triangle is scaring you off a bit; romance isn't the focus of the story. If the mystery of who Jack the Ripper is sounds interesting to you, give it a try!


In 1888, following her mother's sudden death, 17-year-old Arabella Sharp goes to live with her grandmother in a posh London neighborhood. At her grandmother's request, Abbie volunteers at Whitechapel Hospital, where she discovers a passion for helping the unfortunate women and children there. But within days, female patients begin turning up brutally murdered at the hands of Jack the Ripper.

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Linny Milliron said...

At first I read "serial killer" and I was like meh, but then you said "paranormal element" and "creepiness factor" and this review gained my full and undivided attention. ;) 

I think that's such a unique concept how it focused on Jack the Ripper. And sorry to hear she chose the wrong guy! I also really hate it when they do that. 

Thanks for the review! I'll have to check this one out sometime. :)

pooja_sat said...

This sounds like such an interesting book! I love books that are based on real historical events- especially when they are for the most part fictional and borrow the setting! I'm not sure how I feel about it as a series but it DEFINITELY sounds like an engaging read! I've always been fascinated by Jack the Ripper stories! Great review :)

Linny @ Linnys Literature said...

Not sure why it posted as Linny Milliron instead of Linny @ Linnys Literature.. Dunno. Just wanted to let you know it was me and not some random creeper Linny. ;)

Celine said...

Thanks Pooja! It took me a very long while to find evidence whether or not this book is going to be first in a series - apparently only Amazon calls it a series. Ripper is pretty standalone, so I think that if there will be more books in this series they will focus on other characters. Thanks for stopping by (:

Celine said...

Hehe, I don't know any other Linny's so I kind of figured it was you! ^^

If you don't mind the historical aspect, I think you'll quite like this one. I've browsed through your Goodreads reviews and you seem to like the mysterious dark guys best, so I think you'll agree with the choice of Abbie more than I did (: Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

Ashelynn Hetland said...

ooh, your review makes me want to read this book RIGHT NOW! I've been hesitant because I've heard that it isn't really a love triangle, more like a love square and I'm like ugggh. but great review! definitely going to have to bother my library about getting a copy. :) 

Ashelynn @ Gypsy Book

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