Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Name of the Star

The Name of the Star, by Maureen Johnson.

"We just wanted to give you some experience with your new ability," Stephen said. "But we have to get back to work. Boo will take you back."

"Wait," I said as Stephen and Callum turned to go, "one more question. If there are ghosts, does that mean there are ... vampiers? And werewolves?

Whatever misery I had caused by my previous question, it was wiped out with this one. They all laughed. Even Stephen, who I didn't know could laugh.

"Don't be stupid," Callum said.

This book was great, and I believe that there will be at least one follow-up to it, since the title includes "Shades of London: Book One" in it. I've been a big fan of Maureen Johnson's books for quite some time now, so I was excited to find that she had a new one out; and one about ghosts and the supernatural, to boot.

Rory Deveaux is from Louisiana, but her parents are taking a sabbatical year in Bristol, U.K., and they let her choose any boarding school she wants to go to in England. She chooses Wexford, in the heart of London, and on the day she arrives, a "Jack the Ripper"-type murder occurs. More and more "Ripper" murders keep happening, and after a close choking call one day she discovers something interesting: she can see people on the streets that others might not be able to see - aka, ghosts. At the same time, she gets a new roommate, Boo, who also has this ability, and in fact is not a student, but a member of a secret police force that seeks to eradicate ghosts, especially those who cause harm to others, like the Ripper wannabe is doing.

I can't wait until the next book in this series, though all I know of it as of yet is that it will be called The Madness Underneath, according to the author's Tumblr page. Johnson always writes with a quick wit, and the characters in this book are very relatable, too. I recommend this book for both YA (Young Adult) readers - its intended audience - and adults as well.

4 stars out of 5.


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