When I started The Name Of The Star by Maureen Johnson I was under the assumption that it was a historical fiction murder mystery. That was an incorrect assumption. Yet, I was not disappointed by The Name Of The Star turning out to be a modern day paranormal murder mystery as opposed to historical fiction. Maureen Johnson wove a story that held me rapt during the entire duration of the audiobook.
So, the plot of The Name Of The Star is basically as follows: Rory is set to begin her first year at Wexford Academy, a boarding school in London which is pretty far from her native Louisana. Things are going swimmingly. Rory is doing well in school (except for hockey I think it was), getting along well with roommate Jazza, and learning lots in her classes until the worst happens: a spat of murders in London eerily similar to the Jack The Ripper cases. When sneaking out to see Jerome, an English potential hook-up/boyfriend, Rory ends up seeing the potential murder suspect. Problem: No one else can see him, which is quite ghastly. A race against time to prevent the murders, new allies and a mysterious ability are in store for Rory.
Y’all there is nary a dull moment. Seriously, The Name Of The Star is characteristic Maureen Johnson. She puts her spin and wit into The Name Of The Star, which I keep accidentally calling The Name Of The Wind. I know going into a Maureen Johnson book that there is going to be quirk and that I am going to love the characters.
Rory is very likable as a fish in a while new pond at Wexford. And to continue with the water references, she’s also testing the waters of new love-or rather new like. And I love this. I like seeing teenagers act like teenagers in books and not perfect. Sidebar: there’s a character named Boo who is from Manchester and awesome in her disregard of the rules.
I was a huge fan of the London setting. The characters get to do cool things like ride the tube (this coming from me, the girl who was fascinated by a passed out crack head on the sidewalk in NYC) and go to museums and retrace the murders. It’s REALLY fascinating. I felt like I was there, in London, while reading The Name Of The Star.
The audiobook of The Name Of The Star is a perfect rainy day drive listen. I was easily transported into Maureen Johnson’s book by narrator Nicola Barber who sounds like a Disney princess and I mean that in the best possible way. I thought Barber was able to flawlessly switch from a southern drawl to posh English accent without conflating accents. It was awesome. I think The Name Of The Star is a great listen for audio newbies, just like Amy And Roger’s Epic Detour. The audiobook is 9 hours and 52 minutes long and produced by Brilliance Audio.
Disclosure: Audiobook received for review.