“Capturing the Devil” by Kerri Maniscalco
Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mystery
Audrey Rose Wadsworth and Thomas Cresswell have landed in America, a bold, brash land unlike the genteel streets of London they knew. But like London, the city of Chicago hides its dark secrets well. When the two attend the spectacular World’s Fair, they find the once-in-a-lifetime event tainted with reports of missing people and unsolved murders.
Determined to help, Audrey Rose and Thomas begin their investigations, only to find themselves facing a serial killer unlike any they’ve heard of before. Identifying him is one thing, but capturing him—and getting dangerously lost in the infamous Murder Hotel he constructed as a terrifying torture device—is another.
Will Audrey Rose and Thomas see their last mystery to the end—together and in love—or will their fortunes finally run out when their most depraved adversary makes one final, devastating kill?
I found Audrey and Thomas’ personal story line to be a bit cliched. It’s not surprising that the two were wed in the book nor was it surprising that there were some major hurdles to jump to get to that point. Really? An objection at the very last moment? Then that part of the story was very easily fix. I didn’t see the point.
Once we moved on past the personal woes back to the mysteries, the story really got interesting. I found the idea of tying Jack the Ripper and H. H. Holmes in together to be fascinating. [The author’s note even mentions that this is a real theory too!] As usual the story was very thrilling.
I really loved that the Audrey and Holmes final showdown was just between the two of them. She had to rely on herself. While people were searching for her, no one was going to come to her rescue. It was also great to see Audrey restrain herself and not let herself ‘become’ a monster. No one would have blamed her for killing Holmes. It really would have been self defense for him to die. Yet somehow she manages to drag him out and let the authorities deal with him. That was great restraint.
All in all, a decent ending but not one of my favorites of the series.