05. September 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Courtney, Historical Fiction, Mystery, Teen Books, Thriller/Suspense · Tags:

Ripper by Stefan Petrucha, 427 pages, read by Courtney, on 08/20/2012

Our story opens with Carver Young getting kicked out of his orphanage (along with anyone else over the age of 13, due to new legislation). Carver has always dreamed of two things: finding his father and becoming a detective. After writing a letter to then-police commissioner Teddy Roosevelt, he is given the chance to work alongside the top-secret Pinkerton Agency and believes his dreams have come true. He’s been trying to find the clues to his past and only one appears to exist: a letter written to the orphanage from his father. What Carver doesn’t know (and the reader does, so no spoilage here) is that this particular letter has the exact same handwriting that appears on letters sent to the London police during the infamous Ripper murders. And a murderer has begun killing wealthy ladies around New York. The city is in an uproar and everyone is determined to be the first to track down the vicious killer. Carver just wants to find his father. With the Pinkerton’s resources backing him up, Carver goes forth to find his long lost father although he begins to suspect that this man may not be someone he wants to know.
Fast paced and whip-smart, this is a fantastic treatment of the Ripper legend. After all, the Ripper was never caught or identified, so why not have him move to America to begin anew? The setting is stylish and detailed with a host of colorful historical characters, fascinating gadgets and clever dialogue. This one is a winner, right up until the final twist.

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