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The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson

BOTTOM LINE: It is even better the second time around.

Title: The Name of the Star
Author: Maureen Johnson
ISBN: 9780399256608
No. of Pages: 368
Genre: Thriller; Fantasy; Young Adult
Origins: Mine. All mine.
Release Date: 29 September 2011


“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 in the autumn of 1888.

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 now believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommate, who was 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 Thoughts: The Name of the Star is one of those novels that is compulsively readable. You find yourself sitting down to read a chapter or two, and then look up to realize that an hour of your life is now over. In other words, it is the best type of novel. Ms. Johnson excels at making fun of pretty much everyone and everything, but she does so to show the humor in the idiosyncrasies which define a person, a school, a town, a city, a country, etc. Her use of a Ripper-type character not only ratchets up the tension but proves an excellent foil for the real story. I adored reading about Rory’s London exploits the first time and enjoyed them even more this second time. If you have not yet read this opening book of the Shades of London series, you definitely need to do so as soon as possible.

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