Monday, March 5, 2012

“Keep calm and carry on. Also, stay in and hide because the Ripper is coming.”

The Name of the Star – Maureen Johnson
372 pages
Genre:  YA; Mystery; Paranormal
Summary:  Rory, a teenager from Louisiana, packs her bags and moves to London to attend boarding school.  Everything is going pretty smoothly in Rory’s life, until a string of murders that are oddly reminiscent of those Jack the Ripper committed centuries before begin happening again in London.  Can Rory and her friends escape the carnage, or will she be the next victim of this barbaric killer?
Review:  Maureen Johnson has quickly become one of my favorite YA authors, so when I discovered that she wrote a book that dealt with Jack the Ripper, a subject that fascinated me when I was younger, I tried not to scream (heh, no pun intended) in delight.  Yeah, I have odd fascinations…so what?  The Name of the Star had everything I’ve come to expect from Maureen Johnson, and I truly enjoyed reading it.
One of the things I liked most about this book was the humor.  Humor in a book about dealing with grisly murders?  What?  Yes, indeed, there were still excellent one-liners and a sense of humor throughout, and I really appreciated it because the subject matter was so dark.  It was just the pick-me-up I needed when things were getting a little too intense.  In the same vein, The Name of the Star was really well written, and there was rarely a moment that was dull.  The story moved in a way that was quick, but also made sense, and it kept me interested throughout.
The characters were also pretty great, and I really liked the narrator, Rory.  Rory seemed like just a typical teen, despite her special gift that she had that I’m not going to reveal here, and it was really easy to sympathize with her.  If you'd like to find out what I'm talking about, you really should read this book!
If you’re a history buff, or if you enjoy really well-written YA, definitely give The Name of the Star a try.  I’m so excited that there’s going to be a second book in this series!
Rating:  4/5
Other Books by Maureen Johnson:  13 Little Blue Envelopes, The Last Little Blue Envelope, Suite Scarlett, Girl at Sea, The Bermudez Triangle, Devilish, Scarlett Fever


  1. So excited to read this one. Also, I do not believe for a moment that that pun was unintended!