The Name of the Star (Shades of London, #1)
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The Name of the Star (Shades of London #1)

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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  24,711 ratings  ·  3,478 reviews
"New York Times" bestseller Maureen Johnson takes on Jack the Ripper in this captivating paranormal thriller!
The day that Louisiana teenager Rory Deveaux arrives in London to start a new life at boarding school is also the day a series of brutal murders breaks out over the city, killings mimicking the horrific Jack the Ripper spree of more than a century ago. Soon "Ripper...more
Paperback, 374 pages
Published September 29th 2011 by HarperCollinsChildren’sBooks
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Tatiana
As seen on The Readventurer

The Name of the Star is a novel with a great premise but bogged down by a very mediocre writing.

American teen Aurora (Rory) Deveaux is spending her senior year in London. Her parents work in nearby Bristol and Rory is all set to live and study at a boarding school. On the day of her arrival to London she learns that there is a brutal murderer on the loose. This murderer appears to be mimicking Jack the Ripper - his first victim was sliced and diced in exactly the same...more
Erin
Find the enhanced version of this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot....

The only thought in my head for much of the reading was that of Alexis Bledel as Rory Gilmore. It doesn’t do much credit to a story when the reader is perpetually distracted by a pop culture reference. You don’t see Heathcliff or Rochester being thrown around the literary world for a reason. The goal is to hook your reader, not set them in mind of other amusements. Perhaps I am too judgmental but I fe...more
Pam Vlieg
There are several things I love about Maureen Johnson’s writing. Her ability to describe a setting in such a way that causes vivid imagery to accompany her words, and her incredibly intellectual wit that makes me laugh out loud while reading. When I read that Johnson was publishing a paranormal YA book I knew I had to read it.

Rory is a Southern girl going to school in London, I adore the way Rory sees the city and the brilliant deductions she makes about all things British. She is having an okay...more
Giselle
I was really intrigued and quite pleased with The Name of the Star. I read it after seeing many dazzling reviews, so my expectations were quite high and though it wasn't perfect, I was very satisfied with it.

Jack the Ripper! That is all it took to entice me. Unless you have been born and raised under a rock, you have already heard about Jack the Ripper. His case is fascinating and very mysterious. I was really curious to find out how Maureen was going to use an extremely known story and make it...more
Rachel
More like 3.5, but I haven't decided if I'm on the higher or lower side of it...

If you know me at all, you know I love serial killers. I don't love them in a way that'd make me want to be one or anything, don't worry, but I think their mentality and motives are absolutely fascinating. And there is no serial killer as famous as Jack the Ripper. People have been fascinated with the Ripper since he first started killing. There were no definitive eyewitnesses, he stopped at five women, and investig...more
Jana (The Book Goddess)
This is actually the first book I’ve read that’s by Maureen Johnson, so I didn’t know what to expect. Normally, I would shy from these types of things; I mean come on it IS Jack the Ripper. Are you kidding me? I’m not a big fan of horror movies, or horror books ,for that matter.

A few weeks ago before reading the book, I (foolishly) thought that this was a historical paranormal. So imagine my surprise when I started reading and found out that this was set in present day, not in the 1880’s with t...more
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Angels Weep For Goodreads)
The Name of the Star was a hit with me. Maureen Johnson got my attention as an author with her short story, "The Law of Suspects." It was utterly chilling and fantastic suspense. I appreciated how she writes with a respect for the intelligence of her readership, even though they are the YA audience. Like CS Lewis, I believe the best children's book is one that an adult can enjoy. I knew I was going to follow her after reading this brilliant short story. So when I saw this book was coming out, I...more
Emily
The Name of the Star is the second book I've read by Maureen Johnson. I admit that I love reading her blog and her Twitter feed, but 13 Little Blue Envelopes fell a little flat for me so I always assumed I liked Maureen more than I actually liked her work. However, the premise of TNotS intrigued me (Girl moves to London and becomes tangled up in a Jack the Ripper style murder mystery) so I bought this pretty much as soon as it came out. I wasn't expecting much more than an enjoyable, entertainin...more
Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!*
Okay, I love Maureen Johnson. She is a lovely and intelligent and hilarious person. So far, I've enjoyed all the books she's written. (I'm pretty sure I've read all of them...)

That said, I found The Name of the Star somewhat disappointing. I don't know, maybe I had unrealistically high expectations, and I also thought the book would be about something completely different. But, don't get me wrong. I did enjoy this book. But, I suppose it just wasn't quite as good as I had hoped it would be.

First...more
Aa'Ishah
Jack the Ripper is one of those topics I really wish they'd cover in the History syllabus for school. Instead it's 20th century this, and 20th century that. Even at A level - which, for all you non-British, non-TNofS readers, are the two years of excrutiating study we have before university, in which we study four and then three subjects respectively, of our own choosing - the syllabus for the vast majority of the time is an unimaginative, repetitive look at 20th century European and USA history...more
Brooke
Oct 11, 2011 Brooke rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: People who like murder mysteries, people who enjoyed Anna Dressed In Blood, fans of Maureen Johnson
WOW! That last page!

This better be part of a series, or I will have a mini fit.

The Name of the Star was one heck of a book - creepy, funny, adventure-and-action filled, I really enjoyed it! I read it slowly over a few days, however I'm glad I did as I was able to take it all in and marvel in its uniqueness.

There's just something about Jack the Ripper that sends shivers down your spine. I knew, reading this, that I was going to look into the original Ripper murders, and my goodness, some of thos...more
Merna
DNF. Not bothering with an actual review.

What a disappointing and dull book.

You would expect a book about Jack the ripper to be an enjoyable and entertaining read.

Though it was an absolute fail for a Jack the ripper story.

I can't stop remembering this particular scene...

It’s when Rory and her love interest are kissing, and they pull apart and a string of their saliva hangs in-between them or something.

description

Who the fuck puts that kind of description in a kissing scene? What a turn off.
What was t...more
Martha
It isn't a bad book. Not at all. Just nothing particularly amazing.
Plot: Could'v been worse but too slow and not suspenseful or scary enough to merit a 4 or 5.
Characters: Again, not terrible. I didn't feel anything towards them. I didn't care what happened to them one way or another. (view spoiler)
Writing: I want to give the writing a higher rating simply because so many people are obsessed with her books. But...It...more
Melissa Cox
"The Name of the Star" is a great read, I loved it. What starts off as a fish out of water story about a girl from the Deep South coming to boarding school in London't East End turns out to be a supernatural thriller of the best possible kind. Rory is one of the most instantly likeable and realistic teen characters I've come across in ages, in fact I would happily have read about her simply going to Wexford and hooking up with some hot English boy but Maureen Johnson gives us much more than that...more
Justin
I came from the 2011 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans with literally dozens of advance reader copies, and had the nice problem of trying to figure out which one to read first. I had a chance to meet Maureen Johnson while I was there, and she was one of the friendliest authors I had the privilege of talking to. So, I started following her Twitter feed, and if you don’t follow her, you really should. She’s manic and adorable, and I couldn't help but decide to read Name of the Star first. I’m g...more
Michael
I was excited to start this book, I won a copy and I was always interested to see how Maureen Johnston writes. This book was obvious the best choice for me to dive into this authors writing styles. The synopsis looked great; I’m interested in a good mystery, and a Jack the Ripper one...and it could have been a great book if they removed everything paranormal about it. I was really enjoying the mystery and the story of this Jack the Ripper copy cat.

The story opens with Rory Deveaux; just ordinary...more
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/

3.5 Stars

Rory’s parents have taken an opportunity to leave the swamps of Louisiana for life in England, so Rory will be attending boarding school. Lucky for her, this is an upper level school that students only attend for two years. Although her Southern accent will make her stand out and there will be a bit of culture shock, at least the students will only have known each other for a max of one year prior to her arrival. Rory finds he...more
rachel
Oh dear. Disappointment! One of my least favorite feelings. When Hannah first told me about this book, I had stars in my eyes: Maureen Johnson, who charmed me with The Bermudez Triangle and makes me giggle on Twitter sometimes, writing a teen book about Jack the Ripper? It seemed sort of like the pairing of brownies and soda -- gee, I don't know how this will work! But each of those things on their own? Yummy decay.

The cover of this book, though -- I felt such apprehension. Why is it glittery? W...more
Hannah
Nov 25, 2011 Hannah rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hannah by: Hanneybean
Shelves: 2011-reads, ya
Rating Clarification: 3.5 Stars

It appears that a Jack the Ripper clone is re-enacting his dirty deeds in present day London, and the entire city is caught up in the mania. Aurora (Rory) Deveaux, an American teen, has arrived in the city to attend school at Wexford College, a small boarding school located in Londan's east end - the heart of Jack's killing grounds over 120+ years ago. Under author Maureen Johnson's pen, readers can vicariously experience the feelings Rory has as she learns to adju...more
Sandra
{This review original appeared on Clear Eyes, Full Shelves.}
I love a good mystery, so when Maureen Johnson takes it to another level creating her witty and fun paranormal young adult thriller The Name of the Star, I was instantly hooked.

Aurora (who prefers Rory) Deveaux comes from Louisiana, the land of all things fantastical and magical, a place where her uncle has eight freezers filled with everything from batteries to milk intended to get him through another Hurricane Katrina (no worries abou...more
Steph Su
I thought that I was done with stories about boarding schools, ghosts, and/or secret societies. But it turns out that all I needed was the expert hands of a talented author. THE NAME OF THE STAR introduces a freakishly delicious creepfest of a new series that had me gasping, shuddering, and turning pages almost faster than I could read them.

At first glance it seems like THE NAME OF THE STAR has the odds stacked against it. Rory’s a decent protagonist, though she doesn’t quite stand out; the plot...more
Katie(babs)
The Name of the Star (Shades of London #1) is the first book I’ve picked up by Maureen Johnson. When I heard Maureen wrote a supernatural take on Jack the Ripper in present day London, England, I picked it up. Unfortunately, this book didn’t work for me and I ended up DNFing half way through. One of the reasons is because the build up to the action is very slow and full of unneeded information. At times I felt like I was reading a tourist guide’s how to book on the spooky underbelly of London, i...more
Kate (Nomalicious Reads)
More reviews can be found over at my blog: Nomalicious Reads

The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson left me with a bunch of mixed feelings.

It started off really slow, for me at least, and at times I felt like I was reading a documentary. It was a slow reading for me, but I was glad that it picked up the pace, eventually.

It was strange, very strange, but it was good too - hence my mixed feelings.

One thing that royally pissed me off was the description of netball, I understand why it was descri...more
Krystle
1.5 stars.

I have no idea how a book revolving around Jack the Ripper could be so boring.

The majority of this stems from the slow pacing, shallow characters, and overly simplistic and juvenile plotline. It took ages for this book to get into the swing of things and ages for the actual Jack the Ripper murders to start. I was bored out of my mind waiting and waiting for it to begin.

I really do not care about her day to day life in her little boarding school because they did nothing for the plot, no...more
Bry
I was going to start out this review with something like 'Johnson's debut novel shows her to have the poitential to be a fantastic writer with her creative storyline and accurate research'....only I just realized that this book is not Johnson's debut novel and is actually like her 9th or 10th. Mmmm. That definitly changes things. I thought she had potential but the book was still full of 'first-time' writer mistakes. Now that I know she is not a first-time writer and this is just her style I am...more
Heidi
Four Stars: A thrilling mystery that is witty and scary!

Rory slops through the cold rain, wondering why on earth she didn't wear more sensible shoes than flip flops to London. She is set to start her senior year at the elite boarding school Wexford. Far behind are her humble Louisiana roots, but she is going to make the best of it. On the day of arrival, someone has committed a grisly murder that is a copy of the famous first murder in the Jack the Ripper case. The crime puts everyone on edge, a...more
Katherine
"Fear can't hurt you. When it washes over you, give it no power. It's a snake with no venom."

jack the ripper photo: Jack the Ripper ripper.jpg

Setting:Whitechapel, London, England; 2011

Coverly Love?:Yes! It has a certain mysterious quality to it that made me want to read it. The fog and the faint outline of a London street is a nice touch to the ghostly feel of the novel. However, I'm still trying to figure out who the two people on the cover are supposed to be. (view spoiler)...more
Coki
Wow! YA with a perfectly reasonable female main character, some minor flirtation-y romance and an interesting plot completely devoid of angsty teen drama and/or vampires?! I guess this proves it can be done. And done well enough for me. Not great literature - but YA that doesn't make we want to punch anyone.
Monica!
If I had scheduled my reading more appropriately, I wouldn’t have picked up The Name of the Star three hours after watching From Hell. It made me a little “Yawn, Jack the Ripper again?!” which certainly isn’t the book’s fault, but definitely reduced what would otherwise have been a mad love of the story.

Poor planning, Monica. Poor planning.

But anyway!

Name of the Star is clearly for anyone who ever wanted to enroll at a boarding school in London. It’s filled with lengthy, amazing descriptions of...more
Dominique
It would be a lie to say I'd finished this -- I haven't. I abandoned it. For this reason, I was surprised -- I'm not really one of those people who just discards books, ever, really. Trust me, I have persevered through some truly atrocious stuff and came out the other side. But this... I couldn't. i just couldn't.
It was embarrassing. I can't remember the main character's name but she comes over to England goes to a boarding school and her interpretation of England and the mores English people s...more
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10317
Maureen knew from an early age she wanted to be a writer. She went to high school at an all-girls' Catholic school and graduated from University of Delaware with a degree in writing. She now lives and writes in New York City.

Many of the adventures Maureen's characters face in her books are based on real-life stories. Maureen has traveled all over Europe, and is a Secret Sister to vlog brothers Han...more
More about Maureen Johnson...
13 Little Blue Envelopes (Little Blue Envelope, #1) The Last Little Blue Envelope (Little Blue Envelope, #2) Suite Scarlett (Scarlett, #1) The Bermudez Triangle Girl at Sea

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“Fear can't hurt you," she said. "When it washes over you, give it no power. It's a snake with no venom. Remember that. That knowledge can save you.” 196 likes
“And if we get caught, I will claim I made you go. At gunpoint. I am American. People will assume I'm armed.” 112 likes
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