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Whitechapel by Ian Porter

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  • Whitechapel by Ian Porter

    I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, set in Whitechapel at the time of the Ripper murders. Although I do not profess to be an expert on the Ripper cases, or indeed that period of history, the novel came across as being very well researched.

    The book is on sale through Amazon where I first saw it, but I actually bought it from one of the shops listed on the following website for 7.99 (quite a bit cheaper than Amazon!).

    www.whitechapelnovel.com

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Whitechapel-...4236317&sr=8-1

  • #2
    Thanks for mentioning the site Joanna! I'm actually the guy who runs the it on behalf of the author and noticed some referalls coming from this page.
    It's good to know that people are starting to notice us.
    I've just added a long excerpt from the book including the lead character's discovery of the murder of Mary Ann Nichols, along with an article about the main ripper suspects.
    Both pages have an option to rate the articles and the second also has a poll - it would be fanastic to get some feedback from some of you.

    Whitechapel Excerpt

    The Suspects

    Apologies for the shameless plug and thanks!

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    • #3
      Sorry, not Mary Ann Nichols, it's Liz Stride

      Comment


      • #4
        Does anyone know if one of the journals reviewed this book?

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        • #5
          OK, without the aid of reviews, I'll just plunge ahead.

          I liked this book a lot, but I'm not completely sure why. It's not for the historical aspects, because Porter gets nearly all of the known facts about the murders wrong in one way or another. I won't list them because, in the end, they aren't relevant. He even seems to have problems with the geography of London (since when is North Greenwich north of the river?). However, what is important is that he has written a novel that captures the feel of the East End in 1888.

          Porter's factual errors won't stay with me for long, but the characters he created, especially Nashey and Sookey, will.

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          • #6
            He probably meant North Woolwich.
            PS Does a pub called the Grey Morris feature in the novel (subsequently renamed Polly's Poundland - a gambling den?)
            Last edited by Lechmere; 01-06-2011, 01:47 AM.

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            • #7
              You seem to spend far too much time in pubs yourself. Why don't you go away and sleep it off. Or, better yet, just go away.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by The Grave Maurice View Post
                OK, without the aid of reviews, I'll just plunge ahead.

                I liked this book a lot, but I'm not completely sure why. It's not for the historical aspects, because Porter gets nearly all of the known facts about the murders wrong in one way or another. I won't list them because, in the end, they aren't relevant. He even seems to have problems with the geography of London (since when is North Greenwich north of the river?). However, what is important is that he has written a novel that captures the feel of the East End in 1888.

                Porter's factual errors won't stay with me for long, but the characters he created, especially Nashey and Sookey, will.
                Hi GM,

                I read this last year and like you I can't quite work out why I liked it - enough to plough on with it to the end. I wasn't initially too fond of the language used for the dialogue (the author couldn't quite pull off a genuine-sounding Cockney, written or spoken), but it grew on me and I let it become Nashey's own, which made me care more about him and his Sookey.

                I very rarely read ripper fiction because I can't really see the point in messing with a reality already overloaded with drama, horror and tragedy. So in that way I was never expecting or looking for factual accuracy. As far as I'm concerned, historical fiction is fiction and the historical 'facts', as far as we can afford to accept them, may as well be bent to buggery as ever so slightly altered if there's an imagined plot to suit.

                Just don't mix the ripper with time lords, wizards or flying saucers and ask me to read all about it as I would have to shoot myself.

                And that's not an invitation to you budding science fiction writers out there...

                Love,

                Caz
                X
                "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by caz View Post
                  Just don't mix the ripper with time lords....
                  Oh, well, then I won't tell you about Doctor Who: Matrix.

                  I take your points, though, Caz. And there isn't really much of a plot either. The entire novel is almost exclusively character driven, yet it still works and, unlike most JtR fiction I read, I'll remember it for quite some time. Porter definitely has talent.

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                  • #10
                    North Greenwich WAS in North London is 1888. Before the foot tunnel was built, the North Greenwich ferry ran from what is now Island Gardens to close to where the foot tunnel is today by the Cutty Sark. As for the historical inaccuracies, Porter does explain in his author's notes at the back of the book that he had to change things because real events such as Aldgate post office on Mitre Square being robbed the very same weekend as the murder in Mitre Square, and coincidences such as Kate Eddowes calling herself Mary Kelly the very night she was killed, would be seen as unacceptable by modern day novel readers. A classic case of fact being stranger than fiction. The author has since accepted that using such an unlikely killer in the plot was a mistake, and the use of apostrophes to write cockney accent was another mistake. A new version will be published next year with more plot including Mary Kelly having a back story and generally a larger role, a more believable killer and the reader is left to work out the accent for themselves.

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