The Ripperologists #bookreview #mystery

Ciao, amici! Those of you who know me well know I have a bit of an obsession with Jack the Ripper. So, it should come as no surprise to you that I snatched up this book when I saw it.

A New Jack Meets a New Breed of Detectives—Ripperologists

This concept promised a contemporary and interesting take on the most famous serial killer in history.

The story follows a few key players. One is the villain, a modern day Jack. One is the detective determined to stop him. And two are Ripperologists, authors who have written books on the original Jack the Ripper and can offer insight on the original slayings and therefore who the current killer may target next. Also, who the current killer may be. One of these authors was just dabbling in the “Ripper” world for a change in scenery while the other is a bona fide expert in the field and a former police officer himself.

I thought the characters could have been developed a little more, but this is very much plot-driven fiction, not character-driven fiction, so this is purely personal preference on my part. They were developed well enough to carry the story. And the story was well conceived. The clues to this mystery are competently laid out, and as a Ripper fan myself, I very much appreciated what the author did with the reveal at the end. But it was a reveal I saw coming. I have to say, as someone who reads mysteries because I like to guess the “whodunit” part of the “whodunit,” when I figured out where this was leading, I kind of felt cheated a bit. If you aren’t a Ripper fan, you won’t see it until the end. But you might not “get” it, either. I don’t know how non-Ripper fans will feel about it.

There was some head-hopping, punctuation, and formatting issues. I think maybe this could benefit from another pass by an editor. But all told, if you enjoy mysteries, especially Ripper-themed ones, it’s worth a read. I rate it 3.5 stars.

49 thoughts on “The Ripperologists #bookreview #mystery

  1. I think you’re the first Jack the Ripper fan I know, Staci. 🙂 The premise of the book and characters is appealing, and I wouldn’t be able to guess the end. Unfortunately head hopping pops me out of a story every time. Thanks for the thoughtful review.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m obsessed by it, Diana. I want desperately to know who he was and why he did what he did. I have my theories, of course, as so many do. But I think we’ll never know for certain. Which is why it holds the mystique it does, and has for so long.

      Head-hopping stops me cold, too. Every time.

      Thanks for dropping by.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hmm, tough one. The editing problems you mention would pull me right out of the story. I enjoy Ripper stories, but I also feel cheated when I guess the ending. I may have to pass on this one.

    Have you read The Curse She Wore by Jordan Dane? Fabulous Ripper retelling.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah. This one was hard for me to review. There were a lot of plusses but a few minuses. I was on the fence.

      I haven’t read (or heard of) that one. But I love Jordan’s work. I’ll have to look for it. Thanks for the recommendation!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I haven’t heard of Ripperologists, nor knew you were a fan of that. So very cool, Staci. I really hate when I can guess the clues. I do that in TV shows with husby all the time and we usually stop watching them. I want something cleverer than my brain!

    Liked by 1 person

    • There was a time when my family asked me to guess aloud who the guilty party was in shows. Then they asked me to stop because I ruined the fun too soon. Then they asked me to start again because it was fun for them that I guessed so soon. Now I just announce that I know but won’t tell them who. It’s not fair when we know the tricks of the trade.

      But I do like to be surprised. This one didn’t surprise me. But still, I love Jack the Ripper in any form I can get him in. So, I’m glad to have read this story.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Wonderful review! Jack the Ripper stories are always fascinating to me too and I’m okay with plot-driven as long as the plot is strong enough that I don’t notice the lack of character development until I’m reflecting back.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Staci, a great review and an excellent jumble of characters to try and find the Ripper. Although I don’t read many such books I understand it may be a bit disappointing to unravel the end, especially if early on in a book. Having lived as a child and teenager in Yorkshire during the Yorkshire Ripper years, the times were frightening and chilling. As for the investigation a comedy of errors and bumbling efforts it would have been funny if it wasn’t so deadly serious.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I wouldn’t say they made for a comedy of errors, but the Ripperologist conference did add a fun element to the story.

      I can’t imagine living in an area with an active serial killer. I did live in an area with an active spree killer, and that was scary enough. I’m not sure how I would have handled living in an area with an active Ripper. You should write about that.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Staci, my apologies that was the wrong term.

        It was a frightening time and to be honest not one I would want to revisit too much. I feel for my mother the one time my friend and I were out well beyond our tea time, neighbours searching the area, just about to call the police when my brother found my bike against an old barn where we were playing. As I parent now I dread to think of her fears … maybe you’re right, I do need to write about this … hmmm.

        Liked by 1 person

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