The Ripper's Wife

The Ripper's Wife

Book - 2014
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A suspenseful, spellbinding novel of love, jealousy, and murder, The Ripper's Wife reimagines the most notorious serial killer in history through the eyes of the woman who sealed his fate.

"Love makes sane men mad and can turn a gentle man into a fiend."

It begins as a fairytale romance--a shipboard meeting in 1880 between vivacious Southern belle Florence Chandler and handsome English cotton broker James Maybrick. Courtship and a lavish wedding soon follow, and the couple settles into an affluent Liverpool suburb.

From the first, their marriage is doomed by lies. Florie, hardly the heiress her scheming mother portrayed, is treated as an outsider by fashionable English society. James's secrets are infinitely darker--he has a mistress, an arsenic addiction, and a vicious temper. But Florie has no inkling of her husband's depravity until she discovers his diary--and in it, a litany of bloody deeds. . .
Publisher: New York, NY : Kensington Books, c2014
ISBN: 9780758288899
Branch Call Number: FIC Purd
Characteristics: 358 p. ; 21 cm

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JEM_LPL
May 05, 2015

Few remember Florence Chandler Maybrick now, but her trial for murder was as famous and controversial as the OJ Simpson trial today. She was a young American socialite who married a wealthy Liverpudlian businessman, whom she was later accused of poisoning. (Dorothy Sayers later modeled Harriet Vane after Florence for her novel "Strong Poison"). But was Maybrick really an innocent victim--or the most famous serial killer of all time?

"The Ripper's Wife" is as melodramatic as a Victorian music hall production, and the writing as often subtle as a sledgehammer. But Purdy makes up for it with her eye for lush details, her depiction of inner turmoil, and her sense of humor as she chronicles Florence's slow, steady decline from fake riches to real rags.

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