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Jack the Ripper and the Case for Scotland Yard's Prime Suspect

3.75  ·  Rating Details ·  166 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
An investigation into the man Scotland Yard thought (but couldn't prove) was Jack the RipperDozens of theories have attempted to resolve the mystery of the identity of Jack the Ripper, the world's most famous serial killer. Ripperologist Robert House contends that we may have known the answer all along. The head of Scotland Yard's Criminal Investigation Department at the t ...more
ebook, 352 pages
Published March 11th 2010 by John Wiley & Sons
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Amy Sturgis
I found this to be a very well-balanced and thoughtful consideration of the possibility that Aaron Kozminski might have been Jack the Ripper. House is careful not to attempt too much - he can neither prove Kozminski's guilt nor even claim there was a consensus among those at Scotland Yard about the prime suspect - but he makes a good case for not dismissing out of hand the comments of former Assistant Commissioner of the CID, Sir Robert Anderson, or the marginialia of former Chief Inspector Dona ...more
Dec 03, 2011 Cate rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: london
According to Robert House, Scotland Yard's prime suspect was Aaron Kozminski. Let me assure you, there is no case presented in this book that that was indeed the case. There is no case that Kozminski would even have been considered a person of interest, much less was Jack the Ripper. If you take out all the "ifs", "maybe", "let's assume" & "what if" - well, let's just say there wouldn't be much here. House admits as much in his final chapter - it's all speculation. I was, naively expecting m ...more
Brian Betke
Jan 19, 2012 Brian Betke rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book is a definite starting place into the murders. While the case will never be solved, the historical background, and psychological analysis gives us a prime suspect. More important than the suspect is the conditions under which the murders happened.
Sarah Tilsley
May 22, 2013 Sarah Tilsley rated it liked it
A lot of research and work as been put into writing this book, it contained a lot of good, interesting information.
Apr 19, 2013 Debra rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
Interesing book. Nice background and forensic (psychological) analysis of jack the ripper. Very well researched and written.
Chuck Miller
May 18, 2016 Chuck Miller rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Makes a good, if entirely circumstantial, case for Aaron Kozminski as the Ripper. He is a more likely suspect than most others.
Nov 30, 2013 Heidi rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Wasn't a convincing argument when you read the information that was really put forth by th original policeman.
Jun 24, 2013 Patrick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I didn't know where to start, but found a good place ... i'm far from a Ripperologist yet my take is that this is a balanced, credible, fascinating ride
(B+) 77% | Good
Notes: An entirely circumstantial argument, but it's about as good a case as can be made for a suspect so little is known of.
Tom Wescott
Feb 02, 2014 Tom Wescott rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Although I don't believe Aaron Kozminski was the Ripper, this is one of the best suspect books ever written and one of the very few 'must haves' in the genre.
Sep 21, 2011 Mary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well researched and well written. Couldn't put it down. Highly recommend to anyone interested in "Jack the Ripper."
Shaun Hately
Dec 27, 2016 Shaun Hately rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An excellent analysis of an interesting possibility. I have great respect for the fact that the author was clear about the things they could not know, and while presenting quite clearly what they believed, allowed for the fact that at this stage, very little can be proven,
May 11, 2016 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned, audible
House aims the focus of his Jack the Ripper search on a Polish Jew, Kosminsky - one of a series of possible suspects in the case. He provides many links from and shows a deep research into the various surviving documents. This book is a very good introduction to many of the detailed elements of White Chapel at the time of the murders.

The challenge is trying to prove a suspect that has so little documentation behind him. At the same time, much of the argument is strongly based on possible errors
Richard Ward
Pretty good book on a subject that has been written about enough times that it's nearly impossible to say anything new. I did learn some things, in fact, that I had not learned elsewhere. The background chapters on Victorian anti-Semitism and xenophobia were particularly educational, though I did eventually want to say, "If this book is about Jack The Ripper then get on with it already." Even the chapters on the crimes themselves had some info that was new for me, though perhaps not new for long ...more
Susan Paxton
Feb 02, 2015 Susan Paxton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Exceptionally well researched and considerably more plausible than many books in this genre, Robert House ably argues the case that Aaron Kozminski, an immigrant Jew and apparently Scotland Yard's prime suspect, was the likely perpetrator of the Ripper murders. Each facet of the suspect's background, the crimes, the social milieu, etc., are carefully described so that even if one is not taken by House's theory the book will prove very useful reading. In some ways the Ripper case reminds me of th ...more
Midnight Blue
Apr 04, 2016 Midnight Blue rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a wannabe Ripperologist, I have read just about every book on the subject that I could get my hands on.... and this is definitely one of the best. Robert House builds a very convincing case for Aaron Kosminski having been Jack the Ripper but, unlike all the other authors who have claimed they solved the case, he admits that no one will ever have more than circumstantial evidence. This book is a great read, if only for the wide array of related subjects that he used to build his case. There's ...more
Jan 16, 2015 Annie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I recommend this book to anyone interested in Jack the Ripper, true crime or Victorian London. The author obviously did his research and wrote a captivating book about the prime suspect, Aaron Kozminski. The historical background and psycho-analysis certainly makes a good case against the Polish, Jewish, paranoid schizophrenic immigrant. The background chapters on Victorian anti-Semitism were educational and the chapters about the crimes included new information and photographs. Don't expect to ...more
Jul 13, 2015 Mary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First rate and readable

I enjoyed this book. I'm not a Ripperologist, just a casual reader who has a certain level of interest in historical crimes. The author provides extensive background on social and cultural factors. That makes it much easier to get a handle on what daily life was like back then and put the murders and investigation in context.

He makes an excellent, balanced case for Kosminski as the Ripper. The book is fact-filled and still very readable.
George Wood
Jan 06, 2013 George Wood rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting. The fact that Scotland Yard seems to have known who The Ripper was, but couldn't arrest him because of the rules of law in Britain at the time is fascinating. I mean, in today's America, this guy would get the needle. Also fascinating is the back-story, the history of the Polish Jews in both Russia and Britain in the late 19 th century, and how that figures into the case. I highly recommend reading this if you are at all interested in this.
richard mills
Jul 20, 2015 richard mills rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good argument

House is very thorough in weighing the evidence and presenting background to make matters intelligible. Sometimes the background, while interesting, strikes me as too much.
Magdalena rated it really liked it
Sep 18, 2014
Sep 20, 2012 Mária rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Accurate stuff
Jen rated it liked it
Aug 21, 2011
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Sep 21, 2015
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Feb 23, 2012
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Q & A with Robert House 1 8 Apr 20, 2011 11:33AM  
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Robert House (b. 1971 in Boston Massachusetts) has studied the Jack the Ripper murders for ten years, and is one of the world's foremost experts on the suspect Aaron Kozminski. In 2004, House discovered Aaron Kozminski's birth certificate in Poland and then travelled to both Poland and London to continue his research. He published two articles on Kozminski in Ripperologist magazine in March 2005 a ...more
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