Capturing the Devil by Kerri Maniscalco {Book Review}

Stalking Jack the Ripper quickly became one of those unforgettable and loooong book hangover series that I’m pretty sure caused my August reading slump.  For those not in tune with my reading challenge/progress, I finished Escaping from Houdini in early August and then proceeded to not be able to read after that.  Why you may ask?  Because I needed to know how it all ended, and I needed it right then!!!  If you’re interested in reading the series review for books 1-3.5 you can peruse it here.  For those just wanting to know if the finale is worth all the hubbub or if it lives up to expectations then here we go!  Spoilers may occur, please do not hate me or come after me, thank you.

So, Capturing the Devil, what is it about?

Besides Cresswell and Wadsworth finally being fully honest about their feelings/state of their relationship (which was about time!) Maniscalco had alluded to the fact that she based this novel’s main criminal/case on an actual case she had learned about in Chicago, one that had her so interested that she began the series, Stalking Jack the Ripper.  As Audrey Rose is healing from her leg injury, she, Thomas, and her uncle have set up residence in New York when new bodies begin to turn up, all of which completely mimic Jack the Ripper.  Down to the smallest detail, everything mimics that of the infamous killer, but he was dead, right? Thomas and Audrey Rose must quickly find the true culprit behind the crimes as the killer moves to Chicago, current residence of the World’s Trade Fair, and begins to kill though never leaving a body to find.  Will Cressworth find the killer?

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

You weren’t really surprised, right? Besides the fact that this made sure the book hangover went away, I was gushing for the romantic bits, and going crazy when the best laid plans would get thwarted. Maniscalco played with my emotions, and I’m okay with it.  I honestly had some high expectations going into this book, especially after the emotional and stressful trauma that was Escaping From Houdini.  I don’t even think that expectations is really the word for it, let’s term this ‘this book had better be nice to me’ is likely more accurate.  I wanted everything to be tied up in that nice solid bow, and on top a nice happy ending where the characters get married, and solve crimes together, it really isn’t too much to ask for.

Getting past my need for happy endings, Capturing the Devil, is all about Audrey Rose confronting a lot of those troubling facts and concerns that have popped up over the series.  From the trauma of finding her brother implicated in the Jack the Ripper murders to questions about Cresswell’s past, it’s like all of the troubles come out of the woodworks, and while everything is going nuts, a crime pops up and steers them into a darker, more sinister issue of them all; was her brother truly Jack the Ripper?  I won’t go too crazy with spoilers, but this novel is definitely about confronting old demons with new facts as Audrey Rose and Thomas race against the clock for themselves as well as all the potential victims of America’s dark killer.

I’m so happy to finally have read this, and to have gotten the ending I had been waiting for, I was pretty open minded with what could come, but it felt like everything was tied up nicely and that the characters got the best ending they could deserve.  I’m also a little sad it’s over, now I’ll have to find other books to drive me crazy.  Thank you Kerri Maniscalco for this series, and this finale, I don’t know what took me so long, but I couldn’t have asked for a better finale!


So, what were your thoughts on this series and Capturing the Devil?  Your cup of tea, or are you coffee?  I’m like Cresswell, I love a good cup of coffee, but this series is definitely now a favorite!


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