Author: Isabel Allende
Release Date: January 28, 2014
Acquired Via: TLC Book Tours
The Jackson women, Indiana and Amanda, have always had each other. Yet, while their bond is strong, mother and daughter are as different as night and day. Indiana, a beautiful holistic healer, is a free-spirited bohemian. Long divorced from Amanda's father, she's reluctant to settle down with either of the men who want her-Alan, the wealthy scion of one of San Francisco's elite families, and Ryan, an enigmatic, scarred former Navy SEAL.
While her mom looks for the good in people, Amanda is fascinated by the dark side of human nature, like her father, the SFPD's Deputy Chief of Homicide. Brilliant and introverted, the MIT-bound high school senior is a natural-born sleuth addicted to crime novels and Ripper, the online mystery game she plays with her beloved grandfather and friends around the world.
When a string of strange murders occurs across the city, Amanda plunges into her own investigation, discovering, before the police do, that the deaths may be connected. But the case becomes all too personal when Indiana suddenly vanishes. Could her mother's disappearance be linked to the serial killer? Now, with her mother's life on the line, the young detective must solve the most complex mystery she's ever faced before it's too late.
I have never read anything by Isabel Allende, but I've heard wonderful things about her, and I was very interested in the premise of Ripper. Quite a few of my library patrons read mysteries and thrillers, so thought this would be the perfect opportunity for me to read more of the genre and check out a new author.
Ripper starts out interesting enough. There are promises of murder from the first paragraph and a murder within the first few pages. However, the early focus of the book is on getting to know Indiana, Amanda, and the other characters. I found it fascinating at first to learn the ins and outs of each character's life and how they will potentially play into the story, but it soon began to drag.
I have a rule to read at least 50-100 pages of a novel, and I did. However Ripper clocks in at nearly 500 pages, and I figured that would be a very long read for me if I wasn't interested in it. (I wasn't.) So instead of me being frustrated with the lack of mysteries or thrills in this mystery/thriller novel, I merely moved on. Characters are rarely the driving force behind me reading a book, so spending a chunk of a book learning about the quirks of people's lives just wasn't my cup of tea.
Though Ripper isn't a book for me, I'm sure there will be plenty of people who will enjoy reading Allende's beautiful writing as they stick around for the action. Sadly, I seem to lack the patience.
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About the Author
Isabel Allende is the bestselling author of twelve works of fiction, four memoirs, and three young adult novels, which have been translated into more than twenty-seven languages, with more than 57 million copies sold. In 2004, she was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She received the Hans Christian Andersen Literature Award in 2012. Born in Peru and raised in Chile, she lives in California.
Find out more about Allende, her books, and her foundation at www.isabelallende.com, and connect with her on Facebook.
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To satisfy FTC guidelines, I am disclosing that I received a copy of the novel from the publisher through TLC Book Tours in exchange for an unbiased review. It has in no way affected the outcome. All expressed opinions are awesome, honest, and courtesy of me.