What do you get when you blend together unsolved historical cases, women fighting societal expectations, and romance? Answer; an incredibly fun mystery that you won’t want to put down! Stalking Jack the Ripper is fresh and spunky and I enjoyed every second of the adventures with Audrey Rose in the late 1800’s. While at parts a little slow and maybe a tad predictable I rate this exciting debut novel 3.5 stars!
“What is a man’s soul made of that a woman’s is not?”
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.
Audrey Rose immediately became a favorite character of mine. Set during the late 1800’s women, especially women of certain standing, are expected to act and behave in certain ways. I love that Audrey Rose challenged these expectations and had a thirst for knowledge in an area so different from normal, forensics. I think what made her even more relatable is while she liked to push boundaries she still liked to be a lady and be treated respectably. Audrey Rose is a truly admirable and lovable character.
Then cue Thomas. Reminding myself quite a lot of a Sherlock Holmes type character, Thomas is quick at deducting facts from the world around him as well as being quite comical. Swoon central! Its easy to see why Audrey Rose was rather flustered around him.
As far as the setting and time period go I will always be a fan of books set in the 1800s. It is by far my most favorite time period to read about and I loved it being set in England, of course, as we are following the timeline of Jack the Ripper. Kerri takes a bit of historical liberties for this story but I love how she still managed to keep some of it historically accurate, like the real victims of the Ripper and close to the exact dates, the letters, etc. Even though I knew this was a work of fiction I still felt I learned a bit as well about a famous unsolved case.
The few things I didn’t love about this book were the pacing and the predictability. I found it to be a bit slow and I knew who the killer was a mile away. Le sigh.
Overall, I can’t wait to follow Audrey Rose and Thomas on their next journey. I have a feeling they will be fun to take adventures with for a while and will probably become new favorites of mine on my shelves!