Stalking Jack the Ripper, Kerri Maniscalco came out just one week before A Taste for Monsters, Matthew J. Kirby (the links go to my full review of each). Both were touted as mysterious and thrilling novels in the times of Jack the Ripper. Both had strong and interesting heroines and both had some romance. It stands to reason that I would have to do a post about my thoughts on both books- the differences and what I liked for both.
Each book was well written, though Kirby’s seemed to be more neat if that makes sense. It never read like a YA novel to me. Evelyn was a very mature heroine- almost too mature for her age due to what she dealt with in her life. Audrey Rose, on the other hand is much more relatable to a young audience. I would say that the same rings true for the supporting caste of characters for both books.
Both had aspects of the Ripper’s crimes- Audrey with the autopsies was far more graphic and gruesome because of the material. Evelyn, dealing with the spirits, dealt more with finding the souls peace and learning about who they were. Both made for interesting reading for different reasons. If you like the gruesome descriptions and bone chilling suspense, that’s Maniscalco’s book. Kirby’s was a sweeter, more sensitive look at the victims and spent little time on the ripper themselves.
Romantically, we have Audrey Rose/ Thomas and Evelyn/ Joseph. Audrey and Thomas had an insta-attraction. Evelyn and Joseph had a love that was of the soul and spirit first. There was a lot of angst and confusion between Audrey and Thomas, Evelyn and Joseph had some confusion but their love seemed sweeter.
As far as having what I want in a historical fiction, both were well versed in Ripper Lore, but I would say Kirby brought London of the times to focus better. Now, these are just my opinions. Also, it must be said that I love both books. I will be reading the rest of Maniscalco’s series as it comes out. I almost wish there was more time with Kirby’s characters, but the way it was written was perfect. I highly recommend buying both books, but if you only get one then I hope my small break down of the differences helps you with your choice.