What Alice Knew
-John Banville, author of "The Infinities"
"Under Certain Circumstances, No One Is More Suited to Solving a Crime than a Woman Confined to Her Bed"
An invalid for most her life, Alice James is quite used to people undere...more
Unfortunately, there are hurdles for...more
The three main characters, Henry, William and Alice James were...more
• Mild language
How is the novel driven: Primarily plot/action-driven though the character development is well-done also.
My thoughts: After the read-a-thon was done, this one was next on my list and I had a whole Sunday to myself (I have been sick, the kids were still at their grandparents and the hubby out of the house again), so I sat down to enjoy this novel. An...more
"What Alice Knew: A Most Curious Tale of Henry James and Jack the Ripper by Paula Marantz Cohen takes a look at Henry, William, and Alice James and how they each use their talents to help Scotland Yard find Jack the Ripper. While William James is the person Scotland Yard has summoned from Harvard to help assist them, it is his brother Henry James who circulates among the elite in London as well as the with the great artists of the time. Meanwhile, bedridden A...more
In this book Jack The Ripper is terrorizing London, and Henry James is attending boring dinner parties. In London he also has his sister Alice who never gets out of bed. Because she feels there is something wrong with her. Their brother William is called to London to do a profile on Jack and help them catch h...more
This was a fun read. I read Henry James' work in high school English classes and William James' in college, so it was interesting to read the fictionalized account of their relationship with each other and their sister. They work together to try to solve the Jack the Ripper case.
Since it is Jack the Ripper, there are some gory scenes. Unfortunately, I do much of my reading over lunch. Oops. I recommend not reading this over a meal, unless you are a medical examiner ;)
Beyond the Ripper mystery, t...more
Henry James Meets Jack the Ripper--Maybe
Last night, after I finished reading Paula Marantz Cohen’s What Alice Knew: A Most Curious Tale of Henry James & Jack the Ripper, I turned on the television to see that Alfred Hitchcock’s “Dial M for Murder” was on. The movie was at the scene where Margot Mary Wendice asked Mark Halliday if he really believed in the perfect murder. Halliday replied, “Yes, absolutely. O...more
I didn't think it was a bad book and it was certainly easy to read (pages flew by with little effort), but I wasn't impressed and I didn't find myself excited to...more
Alice James, sister to author Henry, and psychologist William, has been an invalid most of her life, and she's content with that. She lives a peaceful reclusive life, and manages her illness accordingly.
But when her brothers become, through an odd set of circumstances, involved in the investigation in London of the Jack the Ripper murders, Alice realizes that her introspect...more
This book was really hard for me to get into. The writing was old-fashioned and hard to read, and having no kn...more
Their bedridden sister Alice James takes on the role of lead detective, as the three precocious siblings attempt to unravel the true identity of the killer. Searc...more
And of course - Jack the Ripper. Cohen brings 1888 London, England to life with her descriptions of locales and social customs. The conversations between the siblings is witty, clev...more
Author Henry James, his pioneer in the field of psychology brother William and their "professional invalid" sister Alice do their part to help hunt down the famed killer when a forward thinking official invites William to consult on the case.
While attempting to solve the mystery, each of the siblings puts for their own str...more
Bringing late 19th-century London brilliantly to life – and writing in a style very similar to that found in the psychologically-attuned, detail-oriented novels of Henry James – Marantz Cohen manages to spin a page-turning mystery while presenting...more
One of the things that the author did that really made the book come to life was the use and understanding of the local language. You could certainly tell the difference...more
I was not disappointed by this marvelous book, which alternated between darkness and stinging intelligence but always remained descriptive. Ms. Cohen brought to life the bleak disparity between the lucky (the upper class) in London and abjec...more
Her most recent academic book, Silent Film and the Triumph of the American Myth (Oxford UP), was selected as a Choice Outstanding Book for 2003. H...more