Bite-Sized Reviews: Metaltown and Stalking Jack the Ripper

September 28, 2016 Reviews 8 ★★★½

bite-sized-reviews_metaltown_ripper

There are so many late-September releases that I’m resorting to bite-sized reviews for some of them. Hopefully these bite-sized reviews will be enough to feed your fiction addiction!


metaltownMetaltown by Kristen Simmons
Published by Tor Teen on 9/20/16
Genres: Young AdultDystopian
Pages: 380
Source: BEA
My content rating: YA (Nothing more than kissing, Some violence)
My rating:
3.5 Stars

Metaltown, where factories rule, food is scarce, and hope is in short supply.

The rules of Metaltown are simple: Work hard, keep your head down, and watch your back. You look out for number one, and no one knows that better than Ty. She’s been surviving on the factory line as long as she can remember. But now Ty has Colin. She’s no longer alone; it’s the two of them against the world. That’s something even a town this brutal can’t take away from her. Until it does.

Lena’s future depends on her family’s factory, a beast that demands a ruthless master, and Lena is prepared to be as ruthless as it takes if it means finally proving herself to her father. But when a chance encounter with Colin, a dreamer despite his circumstances, exposes Lena to the consequences of her actions, she’ll risk everything to do what’s right.

In Lena, Ty sees an heiress with a chip on her shoulder. Colin sees something more. In a world of disease and war, tragedy and betrayal, allies and enemies, all three of them must learn that challenging what they thought was true can change all the rules.

An enthralling story of friendship and rebellion, Metaltown will have you believing in the power of hope.

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My Take copy3

I was a little conflicted about this book. For some reason, I had really high hopes (I don’t even remember why. Pretty cover? Buzz?), but the book didn’t quite live up to them at first. Honestly, I found myself just a little bit bored in the beginning. I thought that Metaltown itself was interesting—and especially the conditions at the factory where Colin and Ty worked—but I just wasn’t invested enough in the characters.

It’s actually interesting, it wasn’t until I happened upon Simmons’ description of the book as Les Mis meets Newsies that I became more interested. I’ve actually never seen Newsies, but the Les Mis comparison had all sorts of bells going off in my head (I LOVE that story, by the way). In a way, it slightly spoiled one aspect of the book because the love triangle was suddenly cast in a whole new light, and I thought I knew how things were going to go … but I wasn’t sure. (After all, Simmons could have veered from her inspiration significantly.) So, I found myself eagerly waiting to see if that’s how it would all end. I also found myself looking for correlations between Les Mis and this book, which I enjoyed (I probably would have enjoyed it even more if I’d seen Newsies). So, I enjoyed the second half of the book significantly more than the first, but I’m not wholly sure if that would have been true if I hadn’t been searching for those correlations. Without a doubt, the second half of the book was more engaging than the first, but I’m not sure if it would have ended up making up for the slow start for me. In the end, I gave this book 3.5/5 Stars.

***Disclosure: I received this book from the publisher via #BEA16 in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given and all opinions are my own.***



stalking-jack-the-ripperStalking Jack the Ripper
 by Kerri Maniscalco
Series: Stalking Jack the Ripper #1
Published by Jimmy Patterson on 9/20/16
Genres: Young AdultMystery, Historical Fiction
Pages: 336
Source: BEA
My content rating:  Mature YA (Nothing more than kissing, but significant violence)
My rating:
4 Stars

He’s the infamous killer no man has ever been able to find.

Now it’s a girl’s turn.

Groomed to be the perfect highborn Victorian young lady, Audrey Rose Wadsworth has a decidedly different plan for herself. After the loss of her beloved mother, she is determined to understand the nature of death and its workings. Trading in her embroidery needle for an autopsy scalpel, Audrey secretly apprentices in forensics. She soon gets drawn into the investigation of serial killer Jack the Ripper, but to her horror, the search for clues brings her far closer to her sheltered world than she ever thought possible.

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My Take copy3

A YA book about a girl investigating Jack the Ripper? How unique is that? Audrey is a typical YA heroine—intelligent, outspoken, a bit of a spitfire—living in an atypical YA world—Victorian England. Of course, this gets her into lots of trouble. Her father is especially unappreciative of the fact that Audrey wants to follow in her uncle’s footsteps and learn forensics. Not only is the profession unladylike, it’s dangerous! But once Audrey starts working with her uncle on the Jack the Ripper case, she can’t let go—especially when clues start to lead back to her own family.

I enjoyed the historical aspects of the novel and how Maniscalco wove in many real-life facts about the cases (make sure to read the author’s notes to see what’s fact and what’s fiction). The romance aspect of the book was just okay for me because I never completely loved Thomas. I had figured out who was going to end up being Jack the Ripper pretty early on, but I was never completely sure, so I still enjoyed the discovery of the truth. I’ll be interested to see where Maniscalco goes with future books. This one gets 4/5 Stars.

***Disclosure: I received this book from the publisher via #BEA16 in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given and all opinions are my own.***

 

8 Responses to “Bite-Sized Reviews: Metaltown and Stalking Jack the Ripper”

  1. Michelle @ Pink Polka Dot Books

    It seems like Metaltown was all hyped up at BEA, but I haven’t heard a ton about it since. I thought last week there would be a ton of buzz about it, but all I’ve been hearing about are Stalking Jack the Ripper and Crooked Kingdom. Speaking of Stalking Jack, I really liked that one. Definitely didn’t think it was perfect, but I don’t read a lot of historical stuff, so for me that was cool. I did kind of love Thomas towards the end. His smart-ass-ness rubbed off on me 🙂

  2. Jen

    Stalking Jack the Ripper sounds really interesting but I’m not 100% if that book is for me. I’ll definitely being watching out to see what you think of the future book(s)!

  3. Joy // Joyousreads

    I just got a copy of Metaltown in the mail today (from the publisher, I think). I was curious about it for the same reason that you’ve mentioned. Let’s hope I’ll be able to see how it stacks up.

  4. ShootingStarsMag

    Sorry you didn’t LOVE Metaltown, but it’s good that the second half was better than the first.

    I really loved Stalking Jack the Ripper, so I’m glad that you liked most of it! I honestly didn’t guess the killer, but I suppose I can see how some might. Only so many options, right? haha

    -lauren

    ShootingStarsMag recently posted: Kingdom of Ash and Briars by Hannah West
  5. Micheline @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews

    Metaltown DID indeed generate tons of buzz when it started making its rounds. I considered adding it to my tbr shelf but now I’m glad I didn’t. It sounds ok but not as amazing as it was made out to be. I’d rather focus on other books…like Stalking Jack the Ripper which sounds brilliant 😀 Awesome reviews my friend^^ ♥

    Micheline @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews recently posted: Review: Empire of Storms

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