October 12, 2011

I See Dead People • The Name of the Star

The Name of the Star book cover
The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson
Series: Shades of London #1
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Publication Date: September 29, 2011
Source/Format: Bought || Hardcover

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 work of 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 believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommates, who was with her at the time, didn't notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, what is he planning to do about her?

I absolutely loved reading The Name of the Star! I wasn't expecting to enjoy it as much as I did, considering it was a story about Jack the Ripper and I get easily scared when it comes to murderers and crime scenes. But The Name of the Star drew me in surprisingly well and I was thoroughly engrossed in it all the way to the end.

There are three really good reasons for me to love The Name of the Star:

(1) If you've followed me for a while, you'd know that I love most things European, especially anything related to Great Britain/London/British culture. Obviously, since The Name of the Star is about Jack the Ripper, it was set in London. Even better, it was set in a British boarding school! I enjoyed learning a bit about the culture, customs and history of the city in the book, as well as getting to visit some of the places that I have always dreamed of seeing in person someday.

(2) I loved the characters that Maureen came up with for The Name of the Star because I found them easy to like and to care about. I had an instant soft spot for both Jazza and Boo; on the other hand, it took some time, but I did end up warming up to Aurora/Rory, especially towards the end. Other characters I loved included Jo, Alistair and, very surprisingly, the Ripper (probably because she characterized him so well!)

(3) It's quite well-written. The plot is intelligently laid out, with a series of events leading up to the story's crazy twist (and then the moment that made me go oh! - which I won't talk about or I'll end up spoiling it for you). It's very organized and I like how it's told.

Even though I could never read The Name of the Star at night (yes, it creeped me out that much since I'm a scaredy cat), I definitely liked it! I can't wait for the next book in the series. If you haven't picked up The Name of the Star yet, go and get it now to read one of the most refreshing young adult thriller/horror/paranormal books ever.


  1. Okay, due to your positive review I am now officially excited to read this :)

  2. @Michelle Yes, do read it! I loved it, even though I thought I might not at first because creepy books aren't exactly my style...

  3. Michelle@FabbityFabBookReviewsFebruary 6, 2012 at 12:14 PM

    Great review. Cannot wait to read this! It's not of the genre I usually read, but it sure does sound interesting (though morbid).

    1. It really is! I'm a scaredy cat though so I got freaked out easily. It's really cool though and definitely worth a read.

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  5. I have this book but have yet to read it! Will be getting to it soon now!


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