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Jackaby by William Ritter

Jackaby (original 2014; edition 2014)

by William Ritter (Author)

Series: Jackaby (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,0969012,089 (3.82)55
Newly arrived in 1892 New England, Abigail Rook becomes assistant to R.F. Jackaby, an investigator of the unexplained with the ability to see supernatural beings, and she helps him delve into a case of serial murder which, Jackaby is convinced, is due to a nonhuman creature.
Authors:William Ritter (Author)
Info:Algonquin Young Readers (2014), 304 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:to-read, Import from Goodreads

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Jackaby by William Ritter (2014)


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Simpatica lettura divertente, per chi adora Sherlock Holmes e il folklore. ( )
  WabisabiGio | Dec 16, 2019 |
This is the first one in a series and, when I realised it was aimed at the young reader market it made me come to the conclusion that all hope of ever finding a good read in this genre is not dead.

The Author certainly has a way with words, and a wonderful way of using them. This becomes apparent from the first character introduction he writes. Not only does he make his characters three dimensional and interesting from the very first meeting, but he manages to keep this standard up and apply it to all subsequent characters that appear throughout the book. It may be wrong of me but, as the title of the book suggests, Jackaby is not the only front and centre main protagonist in this novel; his assistant takes equal footing as the story progresses and, in some places outshines Jackaby. When this happens it doesn’t read as if the Author ran out of steam as far as Jackaby was concerned, but rather embraced the ebb and flow of real life into the plot that makes it inevitable that lead roles will change. The description of our title character, and his actions, had me swinging between wondering if he was truly the genius he purported to be and also trying to figure out how he had evaded being consigned to the nearest asylum long before the story takes place. His assistant on the other hand shows all the traits and stubbornness that many young women were feeling in this time period, and went to extraordinary lengths to stretch those newly discovered wings. I particularly liked with her character the way in which the Author had her determined in her path but at times interspersed this with a glimpse at the closeted lifestyle she had left behind. In the supporting cast of characters, some of whom I do hope will appear in future instalments, they too were treated with as much care and consideration as the main characters. Do I have a favourite in all those presented to me within this novel’s pages? I certainly do, and I would have to say there wasn’t one that I didn’t like.

With as much care as he put into his characters, this Author sets the locations and events within the book. He pulls on the weather and lifestyles of the period to create atmosphere and suspense in a way that I can honestly say I haven’t seen in a YA book before. The Author manages to blend the thought processes of Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poirot and Harry Dresden together in a seamless manner; the end result being something that really shouldn’t work producing a whole new way to look at the world of detection. There is no wasted area in the book, as scenes visited early on come back at some point to play an integral part of the plot; the result of this is an engrossing read that will pull you into the mystery from the very first chapters.

I would highly recommend this book to readers of all ages, not just those in the aimed demographic, and also anyone who enjoys any of the characters mentioned in the previous paragraph. Will I read anymore by this Author? Definitely, I am already halfway through book two in the series.

Originally reviewed on: http://catesbooknuthut.com/2015/09/28/review-jackaby-william-ritter/

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
( )
  TheAcorn | Nov 8, 2019 |
When Abigail starts a new life in New England, she anticipates the unusual, but being an assistant to a private detective specializing in the paranormal exceeds her expectations, especially when her boss Jackaby believes the serial killer they’re hunting isn’t human.
  mcmlsbookbutler | Aug 14, 2019 |
Jackaby is Sherlock and Newt's (from Fantastic beasts) love child.

It was entertaining, fun, and had good characters. I'm sure I'll read on. ( )
  Amelia1989 | Jun 10, 2019 |
I would probably have given this book a solid five-star review if the mystery had been better. But I figured out the bad guy very early on and then I just waited for everyone to catch on. But, despite that I really, really enjoyed this book.

William Ritter has created a superb paranormal world with wonderful characters. Is the mix of ordinarily and paranormal that makes the book so good to read. Most of the people don't know that there are banshees and werewolves, troll and goblins around them and that makes Jackaby such a great and eccentric character because he sees the "other world".

Besides the wonderful Jackaby we also Abigail Rook; an ordinary girl that happens to be locking for a job and find the one job perfect suited for someone looking for adventures. As an assistant to investigator Jackaby.

This is probably the first YA I have read in a long time that I have enjoyed really much! ( )
1 vote MaraBlaise | May 19, 2019 |
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For Jack, who makes me want to create impossible things, and for Kat, who convinces me I can and insists that I do.
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It was late January, and New England wore a fresh coat of snow as I stepped along the gangplank to the shore.
Three stories tall with, perhaps, room for a small attic, the building was busy with gables and ornate trim. With no apparent consideration for either form or functioin, the architect seemed to have included coumns, arches, and carved festoons wherever space was available in whatever style was handy. Balustrades and cornice windows peeked out from a variety of angles, some of whic seemed uncertain to which floor they belonged. Despite all of the mismatched chaos of its design, the bilding coalesced into something that seemed, somehow, right. No two elements of the property belonged together, but taken as a whole, not a thing stood out of place. (p. 19)
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Average: (3.82)
1 2
2 10
2.5 8
3 58
3.5 21
4 119
4.5 13
5 50

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