Title: The Name of the Star
Author: Maureen Johnson
Series: Shades of London
Reading level: Ages 12 and up
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Publication Date: September 29, 2011
Buy The Name of The Star
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. (copied for Goodreads)
In Name of the Star, Aurora “Rory” Deveaux transfers from Louisiana to a boarding school in the old Whitechapel district of London. After Rory arrives, a series of murders mimicking the original Ripper murders start. It is not until the second murder, that the police and media start to realize the connection. Once everyone knows that there is a copycat “Ripper” on the loose, everyone knows exactly when he will strike. While this adds tension, Rory is more concerned about adjusting to not only a new school, but also a new country. She has the help of her roommate Jazza. Jazza introduces her to her friends, and explains the way the school works, and quickly becomes Rory's best friend.
At first, Name of the Star is just a story about a girl transferring schools and move to a new country, with some “Jack the Ripper” in the background. It is not until Rory sees a man, which is later to believe maybe involved with the Ripper murders that Jack the Ripper starts to take a solid place in the story. The biggest problem is no one else the man, not even Jazza who should have looked right at him. This also causes the Ripper to target Rory. This is where the story gets interesting, but I do not want to spoil it for anyone.
When I read the description for The Name of The Star, I knew I had to read this book. I have always been interested in the “Jack the Ripper” case, probably because it is a gruesome set of murders, and no one knows who did it. I loved the way Maureen Johnson worked in the elements and details of the original Ripper case into the story. It added a creepy but realistic feeling to the story. The anticipation is also heighten, because everyone knows exactly the date and time of the next murder.
I love Rory, and all her fascinating stories, and the way she understands things. I love the way Maureen describes the boarding school in The Name of the Star, because it makes me want to move there. I also like Jerome, not just, because he is Rory’s love interest, but because he is also extremely knowledgeable about the original “Ripper” murders. This helps anyone not familiar with the original murders to know what is going on. I like that Maureen obviously did hours of research to come up with the right details. I would recommend this book to any supernatural fan, or murder mystery fans, because it is the perfect mixture of both. I loved this book, and I am excited for the sequel, because I want to know what happens to Rory. If you have not read this one yet, you have to try it!
**Unabridged Bookshelf borrowed this book from the local library**