Legacy of The Ripper by Brian Porter Review by Fran Lewis

September 7, 2009 at 6:53 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )


legacy of the reaperLegacy of the Ripper:

By Brian L. Porter

 

 

A legacy is defined as anything handed down from the past from an ancestor. Some bestow monetary awards, others furniture and some even jewelry. But, in the case of Dr. Robert Cavendish in the book A Study in Red the legacy bestowed upon him was quite different. His father, when he died, had his journals given to Robert by his solicitor and the end result was anything but rich, gratifying or happy.

 

Being a direct descendant of Jack the Ripper, Dr. Cavendish was presented with his journals and required to read them in order to understand the rationale behind his motives and mind for his killings. But, it destroyed him and left him in such a catatonic state that he became sick, ill and could not function or perform his daily routines.

 

In his second in his Ripper series once again the master of science fiction, mysteries and thrillers, Brian Porter, gives us more insight into the mind of another killer, or supposed killer, Jack Reid, Robert’s heir, or nephew.

 

Being the master craftsman he is the author switches between the past, the time period of the true Ripper murders and what we soon learn to be the present, in this book the early 21st century. Because a person is a descendant of a murderer, butcher and killer, does that mean that person’s genes are a part of you and if they are does that mean you will inherit them? Does that mean you will become one and the same with that person? We are about the re-enter the world and mind of one of the most elusive and creative killers that ever walked this earth: Jack the Ripper. Has he returned in the body of Jack Reid who is next in line and has received the dreaded journals which recount his killings and the ones in the present that mirror his exactly from the way the murders were executed and the days on which they took place? Only time will tell as you read this book and learn what horrors will befall the people now.

 

Perceptions are not always what they appear to be. First impressions and evidence in a crime an often lead to an arrest according to the evidence presented by the police and the prosecution. Appearances can often be deceiving and what might be right in front of your eyes is not always what is real.

 

Xerox machines are used to create exact copies of an original document. Imagine someone doing the same thing with crimes that were committed in the past and now xeroxing them in the present. In 1888 Jack the Ripper mutilated, maimed, killed, disfigured and disemboweled many young women because he thought they were not worthy of breathing life anymore because of their vocation. Prostitution was never legal in England though many young women resorted to that profession in order to live, feed their families and survive. Jack the Ripper was infected with a deadly venereal disease by one of these women and went on a rampage of hate, killing and destruction to rid the world of as many as he could before succumbing to the disease. We are not really sure because his identity remains unknown and he was never caught.

 

Jack Reid is in Ravenswood a maximum-security facility for the criminally and mentally insane. Insane and troubled yes, murderer, that has not been completely decided. After standing trial for killing three women he tries to relate his tale of horror and imprisonment that led up to his arrest and incarceration. The direct descendant of Jack the Ripper and next in line to receive his journals from his late uncle Robert Cavendish, he becomes entranced and mentally kidnapped by what was written in them and soon becomes one and the same with the events in them as his late uncle did.

 

What makes these crimes so unbelievable is that they are being committed on the same days and in the same exact locations as the first murders over 100 years before. Two police officers, and one Ripperologist re-read, revisit and rethink all of the evidence and come up with only one conclusion: Jack Reid might be innocent. The killer as Jack the Ripper was methodical, neat and did not even leave one piece of evidence behind to help the police identify him. But, in the third murder that Jack Reid supposedly committed he left himself covered with the victim’s blood and more. Even the way the murder was committed did not exactly match the third one in 1888. Added to that Jack’s description of his being held prisoner by a young man named Michael and repeatedly kept in a drugged stupor and a mystery man who claimed knowledge of all of the murders and held him captive so he could complete his goals, made it reasonable for the police to reevaluate their findings and try to get him free. But, was this the right decision?

 

Dr. Ruth Truman is the psychiatrist assigned to evaluate Jack and work with him in order to have him finally admit his guilt and more. She is relating the events in this book as she learns about them and narrates much of the book as Jack does too. How do all of the characters come together? The persistence of one Police Sergeant and one Ripperologist who would not give up until they found out the truth would help find out the truth behind the murders.  Nor would lead Inspector Holland give up without a fight to find out just who was behind these heinous crimes and if what Jack related to them in their interview at Ravenswood was really fact or fiction. Did the journals really exist? Was there a man named Michael who worked with this mysterious man to frame him for these crimes? Was this person related to him and have the same mental disorder that seemed to run rampart in his family?

 

From Whitechapel, to Brighton to Warsaw Poland these elusive killers have left their mark. But what will astound you is the ending and not until the last paragraph of the last page will you learn the truth or think you learn the truth. The killer: Was he caught? Is he dead? Is he still at large? Only Brian Porter knows for sure and you the reader will have to decide for himself/herself.  Can the pages of a journal carry something in it so powerful and so dangerous that it causes the reader to become tortured, tormented and terrorized by its contents? Can murders be carbon copies to resemble those from the past or even the present including the timing, the locations and dates of the murders? I won’t tell you. You need to decide the facts yourself and weigh the evidence. In the words of Jack the Ripper and the elusive Brighton Ripper: “I have important work to do, and I don’t have a lot of time to prepare.” Brian Porter prepare to receive my rating for this book and we hope you will not keep us in any more suspense and write the sequel so that we really know the ending to this outstanding novel. I am sure there is much more to come. Who will inherit this Legacy next? Who knows? Would you want it?

 

I give this book: 5 Ripperologists to help solve the crimes and Five Sergeant Wright’s to assist.

 

Fran Lewis: REVIEWER

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