Thursday, August 23, 2012

Review: The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson

Earlier this year, I read half of The Name of the Star, and didn't really enjoy it so I put it down. Months now later, I picked it up at the height of the novel, and really want to kick myself in the shin for not continuing to read at least the next few pages. The Name of the Star is an unexpected modern "Ripper" novel with a paranormal twist, which I absolutely love and adore. 
I remember kind of trashing MJ the first round I read the novel, and I want to take that down right now, but I'm not because it shows how opinions can change and drastically at that. I started following MJ on twitter a few months ago on a whim, because I knew she was one of the most tweeting author there is. Also she makes me laugh at really long twitter stories. Through her writing the novel I found that twitter writing in her very different and the same, and I guess that is because she is constantly changing as an author, and this novel did come out last year. I loved how she incorporated small stories at the end of a section of the novel, to open a whole new world, and people to the next. I appreciate how much British things she added to the novel, and how much I learned from this novel alone. From a levels, to the layout of East London it was all very well informed and carefully written to not overwhelm the mind, and screaming at it " This is SO MUCH BRITISH!!!!". Fyi not trying to say being British or their culture is bad or anything like that, it's only because it's new stuff to Americans and anyone else.

Aurora is a great main protagonist in my opinion because she's strong willed, and won't take no for an answer. Throughout the novel you see Rory's strength and weaknesses quite clearly, and you can tell that she is this tangible person, and not a one-sided character thrown into this new world. There are many characters that I loved, such as Jo and Alistair. I don't know why, but Alistar really stood out to me, and he was just there. I quite liked the back story to the "Ripper" and how everything connected.

I have always been slightly fascinated by the Ripper cases, much like everyone else I didn't dig too much into things. I don't have any theories or explanations for who or what is Jack the Ripper, and I honestly don't want to because it's one of the greatest fears and mystery in history. It's like knowing every single trick of a magician, my fascination would vanish and there wouldn't be much that could equal it.

I am desperately waiting for the second novel to come out next year, and I hope you pick up TNotS if you haven't yet, and read it. I'd recommend reading in the morning or afternoon, not at night if you are squimish. So in then end after half a year of believing the book wasn't for me, I give the novel a  head nods, thumbs up, and smiling like there's no tomorrow. (5 out of 5)

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