Saturday, January 5, 2013

The Name of the Star

Title: The Name of the Star
Author: Maureen Johnson
Series: Shades of London, Book 1
Number of Pages: 372
Date Read: July 6, 2012
Genre: Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Mystery 

Synopsis (Found on

The day Louisiana teenager Rory Deveaux arrives in London marks a memorable occasion. For Rory, it's the start of a new life at a London boarding school. But for many, this will be remembered as the day a series of brutal murders broke out across the city, gruesome crimes mimicking the horrific Jack the Ripper events of more than a century ago. 

Soon “Rippermania” takes hold of modern-day London, and the police are left with few leads and no witnesses. Except one. Rory spotted the man police believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommate, who was walking with her at the time, didn't notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, why has Rory become his next target? In this edge-of-your-seat thriller, full of suspense, humor, and romance, Rory will learn the truth about the secret ghost police of London and discover her own shocking abilities.

My Review:

*May Contain Spoilers*

This book was ok. For me it was really slow and there wasn't  a lot of action. I liked Rory'c character as well as Boo's, Jazza, Stephan and Alistar. I really liked how the book incorporated Jack the Ripper b/c lets face it, he's fascinating. I liked the concept of shades and the shade police force. 

While I did like the incorporation of Jack the Ripper, it seems like there was really no reason for the ghost to copy him. The ghost's purpose throughout the whole book was to get the instruments the shades used to kill ghosts and destroy them. I just don't see where Jack the Ripper comes in. Granted the ghost is a murdered since he killed his squad when he was alive but to go from shooting people with a gun to slicing throats and mutilating bodies is quite a jump. There is no evidence that the ghost enjoyed these "activities" or had thoughts like this during his life. I'm pretty sure that if he was a sociopath in life , then he'd be a sociopath as a ghost- that kinda thing doesn't develop. You cant really start to like cutting up bodies out of nowhere. I would have enjoyed the book more if the ghost Ripper was actually the real Jack the Ripper but I guess that isn't really viable since no one knows who Jack really was. 

I really liked how this book was NOT centered on a romance or a love triangle. I liked how Rory was interested in Jerome but it wasn't like an all consuming love at first sight thing. She actually had a life that wasn't about a guy. The story would have went on fine even if she didn't have the whole fling with Jerome. It was refreshing to read a book not centered on love but on how the character deals with her supernatural ability. Plus I didn't really like Jerome. I think Rory should be with Stephan when she turns, you know, legal. lol. I'm rooting for them.

The ending of the book closed with a cliffhanger. While this wasn't one of my favorite books, I will be purchasing the next book in the series to see what happens next.


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