October 10, 2011

The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson

Release Date: September 29, 2011
Publisher: Putnam
Pages: 372
Series: Shades of London #1
Review Source: eBook from library

Synopsis: (from Goodreads)
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.

My Thoughts:
Basically this book is FABULOUS. I was looking forward to it for a longggg time and it did not disappoint. One thing I feel like I must say: if you find the beginning a little difficult and/or boring KEEP GOING. The beginning is all set-up with no supernatural elements, but it's written that way for a reason. Believe me. The ghosty-ness will happen and then you will be GLUED to your seat dying (ha.) to know what will happen next.

I loved all the characters, which is very important to me. Our main girl Rory, Jazza (what an English nickname, gosh), Stephen, Boo, Callum, Jerome, Jo, the scarily field hockey obsessed 'call me Claudia', and even Charlotte because she goes to a fancy dress party as AMY POND (and a ginger girl who dresses as a slutty cop and calls herself kissogram Amy is somehow weirdly a-ok in my book).

I don't even know how to describe this book, because half the fun is unravelling all the details alongside Rory. There's a teensy bit of romance, although it's not spectacular since Rory's new love connection seems seriously shy around girls, and Rory never really talks much about why she likes him. But really, do you need a fabulous romance when you have London, boarding school, hidden abilities, ghosts, secret police, and crazy panic of Jack the Ripper-like murders? No, I don't think so. Plussss I can see how Rory's love life could possibly go in a different direction in future books. But maybe that's just me hoping. We shall see!

Basically this book is super fun and interesting with equal parts humour and creepiness. Rory is quite adorable as the fish out of water American at London boarding school, and her story would be an interesting enough one even without the paranormal element. But add in that paranormal element and you have a FANTASTIC start to a new series that will leave you anxiously awaiting Book 2.

The Cover:
I initially really liked it, and I still think it's pretty, but... it's one of those covers that, once you've read the book, you realize doesn't really represent the book that well.

[Strong 4/5]

Find The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson on Goodreads, Book Depository, & Amazon.


  1. This may have to be my first Maureen Johnson. I've heard such great things, but this is the first to really inspire me to pick it up.

  2. Sounds pretty cool! And thanks for the warning on the beginning. :)
    I will try to persevere, as I think I'm reading this one soon.

    Thanks for the review.

  3. Yay! I'm glad you really enjoyed The Name of the Star! I can't wait to begin reading once I have some more time! It's good to hear there's a great balance of humour and suspense. :)

  4. I started reading this but had to put it aside for the time being. Glad to hear it picks up and that it met your expectations. It seems like a great fall read.

  5. Such book love for this one. After getting through the beginning (which I still enjoyed), BAM! there's just so much more to it. And, yeah, the cover doesn't fit it at all. Not a huge fan.

  6. I'm loving your review. I've heard so many mixed thoughts on this one. I'm glad you like it.


Thank you so much for taking the time to comment; I appreciate each one!


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