Unlike every other short story in The Mammoth Book of Jack the Ripper Stories collection, this one had an intriguing element of fantasy. Nothing too overt, but enough that I had a bit of a smile and a feeling of fantasy nostalgia hanging across my face when I turned the last page. And a few goose bumps, considering the fact that it had a kind of horror spin on it.
This story felt so very, very British. After all, it starts off with the cricket whites and a bunch of gentlemen playing the age-old sport. Just something which is far too English to be ignored… and then it jumps over into the realm of Jack the Ripper and things get really intense really quickly.
I read this in almost one sitting. Not just because it was spine-tinglingly creepy, but also because the writing was so unbelievably fantastic that I just couldn’t look away. Luckily for me, it was an incredibly short read. One that I look forward to picking up again and again in the future. Although, maybe a little further into the future since I like to get a decent nights sleep as often as possible…
This is the first story in the The Mammoth Book of Jack the Ripper Stories collection which deals with racism as an aspect of finding the killer. Although there was an obvious aggression towards Jews at the time, none of the tales in this collection have specifically addressed this topic. Which made this kind of amazing. After all, a tale of perceptions, understandings and inherent racism is always going to be a good kind of read.
I really wasn’t expecting a tale of a cross-dresser in a collection of Jack the Ripper stories. Like, at all. Although, to be fair, I rarely expect to come across such a tale, so when you’re reading about historical fiction and retakes on a notorious serial killer… there isn’t much that could be farther from my mind.
I seriously, way too much loved the ending to this tale. There was a gruesome, horrifying sense of poetic justice to the tale and the idea that the true evil walked off into the night all alone. Which, whilst it is something I don’t often appreciate, it was something that worked brilliantly well for this storyline.
This took a turn that I really wasn’t expecting. I thought that maybe this would be a story of innocents who were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. And I mostly kept thinking this until the very end. Which quickly made me not so happy and more than a little uncomfortable. And incredibly glad that these men are dead, it was just a little too easy to believe this story.
I kind of liked this short story, and I kind of found it a little bit slow. It may be because I was reading this late at night and wasn’t really concentrating like I usually would for such a themed story. although I did really love the idea of a group of men meeting up to discuss the horrors of the Ripper, when one might have been amongst them.
Baseball isn’t really my thing. Nor is it something that I’ve ever understood. Probably has something to do with being Australian and not really having many baseball players in the vicinity. But I still know that the Cubs are quite famous for not winning and having a loyal fan base. It seems to come up a lot in American TV, movies and books…
I loved this twist on the traditional idea of Jack the Ripper. Instead of being a man, she is a woman. And not at all who I expected. Which of course, made it all the more intriguing and impossible to put down. A little more tragic when the final ending hit.