The Ripper Crime writing may be the supermarket-checkout stepchild to "real" literature, but it's still a serious craft — one that Allende, alas, hasn't mastered. The descriptive… The Ripper Crime writing may be the supermarket-checkout stepchild to "real" literature, but it's still a serious craft — one that Allende, alas, hasn't mastered. The descriptive… 2014-01-28 Thriller HarperCollins
Book Review

The Ripper (2014)

THE RIPPER Isabel Allende
THE RIPPER Isabel Allende
EW's GRADE
C-

Details Release Date: Jan 28, 2014; Writer: Isabel Allende; Genre: Thriller; Publisher: HarperCollins

Crime writing may be the supermarket-checkout stepchild to ''real'' literature, but it's still a serious craft — one that Allende, alas, hasn't mastered. The descriptive gifts that serve the Chilean-bred author so well in her lyrical memoirs and historical novels largely abandon her here: The characters in The Ripper's San Francisco serial-killer tale, including a kooky aromatherapist and her teen daughter, an aging playboy, and a gruff Navy SEAL, are exhaustively curlicued and speak in awkward exposition. The book's prose is marbled where it should be lean, and the big reveal comes far too late for us to care. C-

Originally posted Jan 15, 2014 Published in issue #1295 Jan 24, 2014 Order article reprints
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