The Five The Untold Lives Book Cover

On the surface, The Five: The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack The Ripper may seem like another book that talks about the serial murder that happened in the past.

But unlike many books that are focusing on Jack The Ripper, The Five takes a different angle where the book is focusing on the victims instead.

Well, the subtitle should be clear enough what the premise is all about, right?

For some reason, this book reminds me of The Band That Played On where the book takes a different angle on the tragic event.

Sure, we have plenty of books that talk about the tragic event that took place in Titanic. But not many books are focusing on the musicians who were on board at that time.

I guess this must be the reason what got me attracted to The Five: The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack The Ripper in the first place.

The book still talks about Jack The Ripper but from a different angle.

What’s more, the book opens up with the author debunking the myth that the victims were prostitutes.

Not going to lie that it does pique my interest in the premise behind this book.

What The Five: The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack The Ripper is all about

Here’s the book description that I got from Amazon.

Polly, Annie, Elisabeth, Catherine, and Mary Jane are famous for the same thing, though they never met. These women came from Fleet Street, Knightsbridge, Wolverhampton, Sweden, and Wales. They wrote ballads, ran coffeehouses, lived on country estates; they breathed ink dust from printing presses and escaped human traffickers.

What they had in common was the year of their murders: 1888. The person responsible was never identified, but the character created by the press to fill that gap has become far more famous than any of these five women.

For more than a century, newspapers have been keen to tell us that “the Ripper” preyed on prostitutes. Not only is this untrue, as historian Hallie Rubenhold has discovered, but it has prevented the real stories of these fascinating women from being told. Now, in this devastating narrative of five lives, Rubenhold finally sets the record straight, revealing a world not just of Dickens and Queen Victoria, but of poverty, homelessness, and rampant misogyny. They died because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time—but their greatest misfortune was to be born women.

What got me to read this book

It pains me to admit it. But I didn’t know much about Jack The Ripper other than the name being associated with a serial killer.

Heck, I didn’t even know that the victims were prostitutes either until I read the book description.

Since the author said that the claim where these women were prostitutes turn out to be bogus, it got me curious who they really are if they’re not a prostitute.

Are they just a random target to satisfy Jack The Ripper’s bloodlust? Or are they become a target for a specific reason?

It sure does pique my interest.

The book also seems like a good reference and inspiration for the fourth book from my Trigger Locked series.

So, I may as well give this book a read if I want to be sure that I nail Jack The Rippers’ victims right.

What makes The Five: The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack The Ripper worth reading

What makes the author believes that these women, except for one, weren’t a prostitute?

The answer to that question lies within the profile of these women themselves.

This is where the book shines – it gives you detailed information about the victims’ childhood, family upbringing, educational background, and even their marriage.

There are also photos included in the book so then you’ll have a clear idea of how these women and also the people who knew them looked like.

Does this information enough to debunk the myth that these women weren’t prostitutes?

I will say yes based on their behavior, not just the observation from their close family members but also from other people who knew them personally.

Even the police who testified said that these women weren’t prostitutes since they were familiar with the women who were one.

Apart from the detailed profile of the victims, the book also goes into detail on the living condition and the situation that the working class was experiencing at that time too.

While the book only touches the social aspect that was related to the victims, it’s indeed a fascinating insight considering that you only hear good things that happened in that era.

But not so much when it comes to issues related to the working class.

What I didn’t expect when I read this book

Think fake news and misinformation only happen in the modern world?

Well, you’ll be surprised to find out that the fake news and the misinformation in that era are just as bad as the one we have here.

In fact, the only thing that the media care about is sensationalizing the news of the murder to get people’s attention.

Not only they got it wrong about the information related to the court proceeding. But they also get some information related to the victims and the witnesses wrong.

If you think that the media in the old days may have some integrity in the news reporting, you’ll be disappointed to find out that the media in the old days aren’t that much different from the one we have today.

Remember that they were the ones who said that these women were prostitutes in the first place.

And since there was no such thing as an alternative source, many people were gullible enough to believe in the narrative that the media was feeding them.

Who should be reading this book

If you’re interested in knowing the victims of Jack The Ripper in detail, then you should read this book.

While the book does include the condition of the victims when they died, it’s not as grotesque as I thought it would be.

Maybe perhaps I thought that the victims had their bodies chopped into many different pieces?

If you’re terrified of seeing people being brutally murdered, then you don’t have to worry about that. The book doesn’t have any description that makes you want to throw up.

Where to buy The Five: The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack The Ripper

As always, you can buy the book in print or in digital on Amazon. Here’s the link to the book page.

Buy The Five: The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack The Ripper

Can’t buy the book on Amazon? You can also buy the book in print at Wordery. I highly recommend Wordery because they’re offering free worldwide shipping.

Want to buy the book at Wordery? You can buy the book right here:

Buy The Five: The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack The Ripper on Wordery

Over to you

What do you think of The Five: The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack The Ripper? Are you interested in giving this book a try after you found out about it on my blog?

Let me know in the comment below.

P.S Yes, I know that the third and the fourth book from the Trigger Locked series has yet to come out as I write this. But if you’re into a story that involved murder caused by technology, then you may enjoy reading my Trigger Locked series.

Here’s the first and the second book from the series if you’d like to have a look:

Trigger Locked Book 1: The Mind Control Assassins

Trigger Locked Book 2: A Silent Killer

Don’t forget to use the coupon code SEKINAMAYUBLOG during checkout to receive 25% off on your total order.