Magazine article The Spectator

Corpses and Cliches

Magazine article The Spectator

Corpses and Cliches

Article excerpt

Isabel Allende is not an author one usually associates with the thrillers about serial killers. Ripper, however, lives up to its title. It's the name of an online game, set in Jack the Ripper's London. Six players - five teenagers and an elderly man - inhabit their personas with fanatical fervour. They switch their forensic attentions to modern San Francisco when the corpse of a security guard is found obscenely displayed in a high-school gym. The father of Amanda, the group's games master, is the deputy chief of San Francisco's homicide department. Her divorced mother is Indiana Jackson, a Reiki healer whose patients are often more interested in her Barbie-doll good looks than in her holistic techniques. One of the adoring patients is the picturesquely disabled Ryan, a retired SEAL who formed part of the team that killed Osama bin Laden. …

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