Stalking Jack the Ripper

Narrated by: Nicola Barber
Series: Stalking Jack the Ripper, Book 1
Length: 9 hrs and 26 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (1,769 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Presented by James Patterson's new children's imprint, this deliciously creepy horror novel has a storyline inspired by the Ripper murders and an unexpected, blood-chilling conclusion.

Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord's daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.

Against her stern father's wishes and society's expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle's laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.

The story's shocking twists and turns will make this dazzling debut from author Kerri Maniscalco impossible to forget.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2016 Kerri Maniscalco (P)2016 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"Audrey Rose Wadsworth prefers breeches to ball gowns, autopsies to afternoon tea, and scalpels to knitting needles. Though her father, Lord Edmund, has forbidden it, Audrey covertly studies forensic medicine...while 'the Ripper' remains two steps ahead, lurking where Audrey least expects...." ( Booklist)
"This is a book that will keep you up at night and haunt you during the day." (Beth Revis, author of the New York Times best-selling series Across the Universe)
"Kerri Maniscalco paints a picture of nineteenth-century London that lives and breathes in wonderfully sinister fashion. You won't want to put this book down." (Renee Ahdieh, author of the New York Times best seller The Wrath and the Dawn)

What listeners say about Stalking Jack the Ripper

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Great listen

The performance is amazing! The story is gripping. I would recommend to anyone not just people who enjoy mysteries

12 people found this helpful

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A must-read

Gripping story, with a powerful message, outstandingly told and beautifully narrated. I couldn't stop listening!

9 people found this helpful

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Obvious

I appreciate that it must be difficult to write a novel with an unguessable mystery. However, it was really obvious to me who Jack the Ripper was. It was obvious very early on (I'm talking no more than an hour in), and I kept hoping that I was way off because it was so obvious, but I was correct. That being said, mysteries, like horror, are extremely subjective, and what is obvious to me may not be so to another reader.

It just seemed to me that all the red herrings were obvious red herrings, and I was very aware of the author trying to obscure her twist. I was very aware of the author throughout the book in other ways, as well. This book is set in the late 19th century, and it is clear that the author has done her research, and is eager to share it. But she may be a little too eager. There are several instances where she'll put a piece of historical trivia into a character's mouth instead of just showing it to the reader through setting and world building.

For an example, one character might say something like, "Audrey Rose, it's inappropriate to address a man by his Christian name unless you are engaged." This is clunky and stilted--chances are, everyone already knows that, because they're steeped in the rules and traditions of their day. A more realistic reaction would just be to gasp, or look scandalized. One of the age old rules for dialogue is to never write dialogue that is solely meant to give the reader information. Another example of this is Audrey Rose's brother's awkward insistence on inserting 'sister' into every sentence he utters to her. I also really can't stand the weird and cumbersome name, 'Audrey Rose,' but that's just me being picky.

Audrey Rose is your typical fiery, headstrong female protagonist who is so stubborn she gets herself into ridiculous situations and regularly refuses to see reason. Yawn. What makes it even worse is that Kerri Maniscalco is determined that we should know that Audrey Rose is a feminist character. Just about every thought she has is tied to the restraints of society because she's a woman, and how everyone underestimates her because she's a woman, and how she can be a strong woman and still like lace. As a writer, you should try not to make the message of your work something the reader already knows. The message we're being beat with here is, sexism is bad. We already know that.

And as strong and independent as Audrey Rose is supposed to be, approximately 60% of her character revolves around hating/loving the arrogant genius, Thomas. There is angst, there are hormones, there is instalove. I would love it if we could start writing YA heroines who aren't madly in love with jerks, or--gasp--maybe don't even have a love interest at all.

The characters, especially for the first half, are often cartoonish, their actions and their words exaggerated nearly to the point of ridiculousness, and character development in general leaves a lot to be desired. Theories about Jack the Ripper's motives are very Psych 101--I may have been willing to forgive the fact that their analysis is Freudian though Freud's theories on psychoanalysis were not widely known in 1888, if it weren't for everything else. Historical liberties are ok, but poor setting, poor character development, awful YA tropes, and a weak twist are not.

I confess that I read this just to get to Stalking Prince Dracula, the higher-rated next book in the series. Let's hope things improve.

12 people found this helpful

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Why does everyone love this so much?

I will admit the actual plot pf this fantastic, it flowed really well and was a quick read. Now getting onto Audrey Rose. I am so tired of every ya book being "firey headstrong to the point of being illogical" female character falling wayyy to fast for a "hot arrogant jerk". I was super excited because I had heard she was really girly and liked pretty dresses, I thought it could be interesting. That being said this book did not hold up, if a female character is super girl how are you having her aunt scold her for dressing like a tomboy. Also having a character who is interested in basically being a medical examiner amd yet is almost squeamish and so sensitive about death came off as a joke. It especially came off as a joke when a boy taught her to look past this. If that's going to be character development why can't someone other than a love interest help her? That is so overdone.

25 people found this helpful

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Underwhelmed...

I was intrigued by the summary and I personally love reading about the Victorian era. However, I was underwhelmed by this book. The story and pacing was good but I found Audrey-Rose to be obnoxious at times. The way she would keep reinforcing that she was smart and capable was beating a dead horse. I can take it a couple time but it was every couple of minutes! The narrator was great and probably what saved the story.

4 people found this helpful

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For 12 year old women

This is written for young women, in their early teens. If you are not of that demographic, you may not find this novel engaging enough to finish. The narator, Nicola Barber is excellent though, and is a bright spot in this audible book.

9 people found this helpful

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OMG SUCH A GEM

Where does Stalking Jack the Ripper rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

In the top 10! The dialogue is amazing and the addition of James Patterson's expertise clearly shows and if you are knowledgeable of the Jack the Ripper story you will find many easter eggs here.

What did you like best about this story?

The performance was amazing, it made the story so much more enthralling.

What does Nicola Barber bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The accents were impeccable and added so much flavor!

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

It was all great

2 people found this helpful

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Excellent suspense for teens!

I listened to this with my 13 year old daughter who loves mystery and suspense. It was perfect! The story was so thrilling and entertaining and didn't need to rely on bass language and gratuitous sexual scenes. We lived it!

2 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars

nope

I wanted to like it, but whiney teenage romance ruined the plot. The main character was a grown man's fantasy of a teen girl. It was so disturbing I didn't make it past the 2nd chapter.

6 people found this helpful

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great gripping story

listened to this while on a road trip it was gripping and kept me on the edge of my car seat.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Kathleen-Ann
  • 11-01-16

Maybe I'm being too harsh

I'm not the intended target market for this story, however, YA fiction is one of my guilty pleasures if I can find those little gems which aren't overly throbbing with angsty hormones and ruining (for me) what otherwise could have been an enjoyable tale.

This take on the 'Ripper' mystery we've all heard details of is nothing new and quite obvious from early on and I don't usually tend to mind grammatical inconsistencies but I find some of the very modern language used here to be one more reason to not love this book.

The cast of characters were flat but some of them, especially the young apprentice Dr. Thomas and the almost just as young chief of police, to have a spark of something about them that might be potental to be great characters if developed.

I've read worse but I wasn't excited by this and wish I'd used my credit elsewhere.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Lyndsey
  • 01-31-18

Brilliant YA take on the Ripper legend

This is a fun historical YA novel, the first in a trilogy that combines several legends and stories to make a rich and detailed new version of the past. I enjoyed the story and am looking forward to Hunting Prince Dracula. The narrator does a great job, and the additional historical information included is fascinating and really adds to the credibility of the story. If you enjoy a historical novel, but prefer empowered, kick ass female characters to the usual damsels in distress, then you'll love this take on the Ripper legend.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Leanne U.
  • 07-24-20

Gripping

Gripped throughout. Very enjoyable read. Highly recommended. Especially the twists and blooming love story. Great stuff

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  • Emma
  • 06-20-20

Great read- not for the squeamish!

Took a while to get into it but really looking forward to the next installments. I called the ending to the book which I hate doing but overall it was enjoyable.

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  • Cat
  • 01-03-20

Gripping and enjoyable

I love Forensics
i love the mystery of Jack the Ripper and i am a sucker for Young Adult Fiction

An enjoyable listen from start to finish. Now to complete the collection over the next 4 months of audible credits

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-22-19

This was BREATHTAKING!

For me? This book was absolutely beautiful, and the performance was wonderfully portrayed. The narrator for this is exactly how I imagine Miss Audrey Rose to sound... I would recommend this book to anyone a fan of crime and historical fiction. The way the author displays all the characters in the book? INCREDIBLE!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-15-19

Too predictable

I knew before half way through who the murderer was, in the best murder mysteries you’re completely surprised! But well written and a likeable MC.

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  • Antdart
  • 08-18-19

brilliant

As a ripperologist, I see the the anomalies but this is a fantastically woven story. It gave me goosebumps.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • iamnobird94
  • 08-05-19

Entertaining twists & turns - slightly predictable

'Roses have both petals and thorns, my dark flower. You needn’t believe something weak because it appears delicate. Show the world your bravery'

Really loved and enjoyed this one, couldn't stop listening to it. The narrator was fantastic, altering her voice to suit different characters, even the men she managed to capture brilliantly. the content was interesting, had me on edge and my curiosity peaked throughout. I loved the authors style she really captures the time period effortlessly and it was so believable. Brilliant characterisation, and some fantastic one liners in there from Audrey-Rose that had me bobbing my head in agreement. It had a real feminist tone to it, despite, although perhaps more so in spite, of its subject matter. I could only criticise the ending slightly because I had guessed who Jack was some chapters before and couldn't believe everyone's reaction to him, forgiveness for crimes as henious as those that Jack commited seemed a little unbelivable, but I'll let it slide as it was predominantly a well written - and read - book.

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  • Jane Kelsey
  • 01-17-19

started well, but went downhill

enjoyed it overall, but struggled to like Audrey as time went by and the plot because incredibly predictable.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • 8mineamy
  • 10-17-17

A twisted tale

I love a good twisted tale / retelling. This was well thought out & a fun, puzzling Jack the Ripper story with a Sherlock Holmes feel & more science than I thought I’d like, but it was done well!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Deb
  • 05-26-20

Could not listen anymore.

I didn't get passed chapter 3 and now I am deleting this from my library. I just could not listen anymore. the main character annoyed me so much.

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  • Brittany
  • 12-19-19

Wow!!!!!!

Incredible, incredible story and so well performed!!! I blasted through this in a day. It made my mundane work so much more enjoyable!!

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  • Dumbumm
  • 11-28-19

An enjoyable read

I'll be perfectly honest, this is the first murder mystery book I've read, and I loved it. It had everything I wanted and more. We have Audrey Rose, a smart and fearless female lead and devilishly charming self-assured Thomas Cresswell, both whom study under Audrey Rose's Uncle in forensic science. Together they seek answers to the bloody murders of Jack the Ripper that's been plaguing the streets. Though it was easy to figure out the mystery, I was still in-deep with the characters that it was worth the 4 stars. Romance, forensic science, set in the Victorian Era and bloody murders... what else can you want?

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-24-19

Excellent Book and Narration

When I chose to get this book I was unsure what I would think of it. I have read a lot of material on Jack The Ripper and I love Victorian England, specifically London. This was a brave book to write.
It has turned out to be one of the best reads I have had this year, I loved it that much I will be purchasing a hardcopy for my bookshelves.
If you are unsure about this book just get it, you will not be disappointed.

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  • Paperback Princess
  • 04-16-19

A must read, historically researched novel

I flew through this book everything from characters to plot was extremely well written. I thoroughly enjoyed the narrator and looking forward to reading or listening to the rest of the series. This is the first audiobook not full cast that I love!!! Nicola Barber did an amazing job narrating. Full review will be posted on my blog Princess-paperback.blogspot.com.au

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-06-18

A good book, but not my favourite

I really liked the gothic feel of this book and some of the scenes were wonderfully creepy. The overall plot was entertaining and engaging, and the audiobook narrator did a great job of building atmosphere and anticipation. So much so that I was just lying in bed listening to the audiobook, which I never do. However I was a little disappointed by the mystery aspect, I had figured out who Jack the Ripper was from about half-way through.

I was a bit hit or miss with the characters as well. I really liked the spunkiness of Audrey and I liked her brother. However, I could never decide whether or not I liked Thomas, the love interest. At times I thought he was nice and charming but at other times he could be pretty insufferable.

Overall a very entertaining and fast paced book but I just wish the mystery was a little more surprising.