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Saturday, August 31, 2013

Jack the Ripper

On this day in 1888, Jack the Ripper killed Mary Ann Nichols-- his (her?) first victim. On November 7th of the same year, he claimed his 5th and final victim. The case was closed in 1892, still unsolved. To mark this day, we look at books about Jack and Ripper and other serial killers. (I'm on vacation, so all annotations are taken from WorldCat).

    

Ripper by Stefan Petrucha. Adopted by famous Pinkerton Agency Detective Hawking in 1895 New York, fourteen-year-old Carver Young hopes to find his birth father, but when he becomes involved in the pursuit of notorious killer Jack the Ripper, Carver discovers that finding the truth can be worse than ignorance.

The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson. Rory, of BĂ©nouville, Louisiana, is spending a year at a London boarding school when she witnesses a murder by a Jack the Ripper copycat and becomes involved with the very unusual investigation. Jennie adds: The first in the Shades of London trilogy, follow it with The Madness Underneath.

The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker by Leanna Renee Hieber. The albino beauty who has come to study at Victorian Londons Athens Academy will learn not only to deal with the ghosts that she can see, but her own part in the puzzling prophecy that threatens the known world. Jennie adds: Yes, this is technically an adult romance novel, but it's very clean (a bit disappointing if you're actually looking for an adult romance). Follow it with The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker.

    

Dodger by Terry Prachett. In an alternative version of Victorian London, seventeen-year-old Dodger, a cunning and cheeky street urchin, unexpectedly rises in life when he saves a mysterious girl, meets Charles Dickens, and unintentionally puts a stop to the murders of Sweeney Todd.

The Diviners by Libba Bray. Seventeen-year-old Evie O'Neill is thrilled when she is exiled from small-town Ohio to New York City in 1926, even when a rash of occult-based murders thrusts Evie and her uncle, curator of The Museum of American Folklore, Superstition, and the Occult, into the thick of the investigation.

Shadowlands by Kate Brian. Rory, a girl in witness protection, thinks the serial killer she turned in has found her and is killing people around her. But as she investigates, she discovers a dark, disturbing truth about her new hometown.

    

Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor. Twelve-year-old Sunny Nwazue, an American-born albino child of Nigerian parents, moves with her family back to Nigeria, where she learns that she has latent magical powers which she and three similarly gifted friends use to catch a serial killer. Jennie says: This is an awesome book, and I wish it were more popular, so we could get a sequel!

Henry Franks by Peter Adam Salomon. While a serial killer stalks his small Georgia town, sixteen-year-old Henry tries to find the truth about the terrible accident that robbed him of his mother and his memories, aided by his friend Justine but not by his distant father.

Acceleration by Graham McNamee. Stuck working in the Lost and Found of the Toronto Transit Authority for the summer, seventeen-year-old Duncan finds the diary of a serial killer and sets out to stop him.

Also check out our Jeffrey Dahmer list. What else would you add?

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