Sunday, 30 October 2011

The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson

The Name of the Star (Shades of London #1)Reviewed by Gina
Date Published: 29th September, 2011
Date Read: 30th October, 2011
Blurb: 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 Jack the Ripper events of more than a century ago.

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 roommate, who was walking with her at the time, didn't notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, why has Rory become his next target? In this edge-of-your-seat thriller, full of suspense, humor, and romance, Rory will learn the truth about the secret ghost police of London and discover her own shocking abilities

Review: I’ve been looking forward to reading this book for a while and I loved it! The idea is different and unique with having a Jack-the-Ripper copycat which instantly made me want to read it even more. Who doesn’t love a good book with a bit of romance, horror, thrills, action and a few gory parts that would definitely freak me out? Well if you love all these things then pick it up and get stuck into it!

This novel focuses on Rory (Aurora) Deveaux who is a normal girl who moves from Louisiana to London with her family. There in London she attends a boarding school called Wexford and it’s nothing like she expected. Once she is there the brutal murders committed by a Jack the Ripper copy-cat soon reach her. London breaks
into panic mode with some people creating clothes about it, some betting on where the next murders will take place and some people just freaking out. But when Rory meets a man she thinks is behind all of this Rippermania everything changes and confusion sets in when she finds out she is the only one who can see him.

I honestly didn’t really know what to expect from this novel. I definitely expected a thrill ride filled with suspense and action (along with some gore) and to my surprise I got exactly what I wanted (without too much gore). To start off with, the novel mainly focuses on developing the characters and building up to the mystery that is the murderer. I do enjoy reading more about the characters because I feel as though I get to know them better. But if you easily get bored don’t give up on this book because it gets wayyy better later on.

I thought the plot was amazing and at first I was wondering how this would all spread into a series but Maureen has done it (not that I’m gonna give it away or anything). The detail about London was incredible and it made me want to go there. I wanted to absorb everything and I feel as though I have succeeded in doing that thanks to Maureen’s style of writing.

If you are one of those readers who enjoy a lot of romance in your YA novels with the gooey love talk and the “you’re all I think about day and night” stuff then you might not like this aspect of the novel. There is little romance but what we do get is nice seeming as though the book isn’t based on a relationship but mystery and suspense. You might also need a little patience with this one because the plot isn’t extremely fast but I think that it’s made that way to build up the tension.

The Name of the Star was a novel I thoroughly enjoyed and I cannot wait to read more of this series. This is for anyone who loves novels that have twists and turns, suspense and action (but ya also gotta have a little patience). I’m giving this 4.5 stars!!


  1. Yay, you like it. Glad to hear it, since recently I've read a couple of bad reviews that had me a little worried.

  2. Great review!! I am glad that you liked this one!! I really liked it as well :)