The Madness Underneath, Maureen Johnson
The Madness Underneath, Maureen Johnson (2/2013)
(#2 in the Shades of London series after The Name of the Star, reviewed here)
Scenario: Rory’s a survivor. After her encounter with a ghost mimicking Jack the Ripper, though, she’s behind on schoolwork and a bit tired of tuning out her therapist. When she gets a chance to return to Wexford, she’s up for it. Even if she can still see ghosts, returning to school means seeing her friends again and regaining a measure of normalcy, right?
- Rory, always. She’s deeply weird but self-aware, articulate, and funny. Johnson also has this ability to incorporate lots of humorous, only tangentially related stories from Rory’s past, giving her a sort of depth and appeal as a narrator that remind me of Ellie Linton in Tomorrow, When the War Began.
- Changes in the love department. Need I say more?
- Setting. I spent fall 2007 in Oxford, often visiting my then-fiance at his program in London. The descriptions are pretty spot-on and make me very nostalgic.
- This one is so clearly a middle book, covering only a couple weeks’ time, but it still makes for a welcome treat.
Bottom Line: I think I said it well in my review of The Name of the Star (though saying that sounds awfully self-involved!): “Not unlike the Harry Potter series, this one packs in a lot of popular elements not usually combined: boarding schools, murder mystery, the paranormal, and a fair punch of humor.”
[read via Netgalley]