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Murder in Whitechapel by Aiden James
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Murder in Whitechapel

by Aiden James, Michelle Wright (Author)

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Emmanuel Ortiz, aka Judas Iscariot, yes that Judas, is on the trail of Jack the Ripper. You have to do something to keep things interesting when you’re immortal. What he discovers at the end of that trail could cost him his immortality and more….

What an intriguing premise. Judas Iscariot aka Emmanuel Ortiz as an immortal who believes (hopes) finding the thirty pieces of silver he betrayed Jesus for will bring him absolution. He’s collected eight so far and is constantly being reminded to stay on task by this friend, business partner, and fellow immortal Roderick Cooley. Both have become rich through varied business interests and imports, particularly opium. Roderick, who annoyingly refers to Judas as Manny, was drowned and still retains vestiges of his death in appearance and health issues; while Judas is still battling the selfishness and greed that led to his being a cursed immortal.
Roderick has little patience for the pretensions and restrictions of Victorian society and much prefers his home in Virginia. A fact he makes evident to Judas at every opportunity. As irritating as he could be I really liked Roderick. He’s what every true friend should be, blunt, honest, and not afraid to jerk a knot in you when needed.

Immortality can be tiresome so Judas is constantly seeking adventure, diversions, and distractions. This makes his search for Jack less than altruistic. Passing himself off as an American trained private investigator he goes to Scotland Yard and is politely rebuffed. Judas determinedly continues his investigation by moving into the Whitechapel area to roam the streets in search of information. When he’s given a description by a friend of Liz Stride’s Judas believes he knows who the killer is. He prays to God he’s wrong.

Wonderfully descriptive, THE JUDAS REFLECTIONS: MURDER IN WHITECHAPEL transports the reader back in time to Victorian London. From the tony areas such as Belgravia to the squalor of the east-end, Spitalfields and Whitechapel, the reader can experience an era of stark contrasts and unprecedented growth. The idea of putting Judas, probably the most reviled man in the bible, and Jack the Ripper against each other was inspired.
THE JUDAS REFLECTIONS: MURDER IN WHITECHAPEL is an apropos title. The characters of Judas and Roderick in their conversations, thoughts, and interactions with other characters bring up several ideas worthy of consideration long after closing the book. It’s also entertaining guaranteeing I’m on board for more of this fascinating series.
Reviewed by IvyD for Manic Readers & Miss Ivy's Book Nook ( )
  ivydtruitt | Apr 4, 2014 |
In The Judas Reflections, Judas Iscariot, having failed at his suicide attempt, has been forced, like Cain before him, to walk the world as an immortal, seeking redemption. He is hunting the thirty pieces of silver he was paid for his betrayal of Jesus in hopes that he can buy back forgiveness and his soul. To this end, he has also committed to trying to do good although his old sins of greed and selfishness often get in the way.

In this novel, he is living in London during the time of Jack the Ripper. As an act of atonement, he is determined to hunt down the killer himself. Unfortunately, things are not always what they seem and Jack is a lot more of a threat than Judas (now known as Emmanuel) had imagined. It seems there is one more immortal walking the earth and Judas may be outmatched by evil.

I quite enjoyed this tale of sin and redemption. Judas is a likeable and complex character. I was intrigued by Roderick, his Irish partner, whose origins are only hinted at. I also found the descriptions of Victorian England very interesting, especially those of Whitechapel. Author James Aiden does a very good job of evoking the poverty and lack of hope its inhabitants live with daily. Given this is a story about Judas Iscariot, there are some Christian themes involved. However, these aspects add to the story but don't overwhelm it.

I am not sure but I can guess, given the ending of the story, that this is just one book in a series and I look forward to reading more of Judas' search for the coins. ( )
  lostinalibrary | May 7, 2013 |
*Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher on Netgalley in return for an honest review*

Author
Born in Denver Colorado, Aiden James is fascinated by Gothic history and the supernatural. Aiden currently lives with his wife and two sons in Tennessee.
Michelle Wright was born in London's east-end into a family of psychic mediums, her passion for writing started young. By her early teens she had published stories in magazines and wrote scripts for school plays. In later years becoming a psychotherapist and journalist in-between practicing her psychic skills she travelled extensively. Having lived in Spain and the US she now resides in Belgium.

Review
I am not so sure what to say about this book or how to rate it. I love reading mystery and suspense books and Jack the Ripper is a great character to use building up a good story. Combined with the quite interesting idea of Judas becoming immortal to pay for his betrayal I was curious how it worked out in one story. After finishing the book I am asking myself what I read. In a way I liked reading the story. I loved the style but I did not find the story that exciting.
You are living in Judas his (or Emmanuel as he is called now) thoughts. This is entertaining enough and I like the way his whole live is playing part in the story. This is done so well you can really feel along and get angry when he is angry and worry when he is worried. Still this was not enough to make the story exciting. There is not really a puzzle idea thing are just happening and going on and I never really felt excitement for him getting close to Jack or not.
I liked the character of Roderick. He seems like an great fellow and I wonder who he is supposed to be in history. I was not able to guess. I am curious about other work by both writers. I loved their choice of words and the writing style was soothing and enjoyable. I will probably try the other books in the Judas series. ( )
  Ciska_vander_Lans | May 5, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
James, Aidenprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wright, MichelleAuthormain authorall editionsconfirmed
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