Meet the Newbies: Kerri Maniscalco

Meet the Newbies is a blog event dedicated to introducing you to the “newbie” published debut authors. In this event, expect to learn more about the authors, their books, and silly fun facts! Check out the full Meet the Newbies lineup here.

Kerri Maniscalco is such a kind and hilarious author. She makes me want to eat pizza on a daily basis, and her gif-usage is unparalleled! I'm currently reading her debut novel, a historical mystery novel, Stalking Jack the Ripper, and it's spectacular. This is definitely a book that should be on your watch list, so here is Kerri!

Author Most Likely To Be A Stormtrooper for Halloween

Nickname: Kerri Sunshine
First Day of School: September 20, 2016
Homeroom: jimmy patterson/Little, Brown
Grade: YA Gothic Horror
Extracurricular Activities: Reading, Sherlock Fangirl Club, Model Crime Investigation, Forensic Science Lab, School Journalism, Bookstagram Photography.
Favorite Class: Muggle Studies
Favorite Quote/Motto: “Our doubts are traitors, And make us lose the good we oft might win, By fearing to attempt.” — William Shakespeare


1. Describe your book in five words.
Victorian CSI set in London.

2. I hear that Stalking Jack the Ripper is gory, creepy, and mind-bending. Can you share the most fascinating (or gruesome) thing you learned in your research for SJTR? 
Oh my gosh. There was SO much gruesome research involved with the pre-writing phase of this book. Everything from reading Ripper case details written by the medical examiners who’d been involved, to studying pictures of the crime scenes themselves was pretty intense. I wanted to make sure that the violence against the women wasn’t being glorified, though. I felt very strongly that I needed my main character, Audrey Rose, to get in there and look past the gore to find justice for them. That said, one of the most unpleasant things I had to research was what a body smelled like after major trauma. I’m very grateful for current medical examiners who post this information online. And I’m super grateful for my mews. I had my cat snuggled next to me during most of the creepy scenes. She’s braver than Mommy, by far.  

3. If you could spend a day in the setting of your novel, what would you do? Where would you go? 
Great question! Let’s see. I’d want to attend a high tea, but maybe skip the whole corset-wearing part. I love Victorian dresses, but am also a fan of breathing, so… I’ll settle for sundresses and converse. Then I’d like to tag along with Audrey Rose when she creeps through foggy streets, stalking the killer. I’d also like to do the whole tourist thing: see Big Ben, the tower of London, the palace, probably ride a train to the countryside. Maybe even hang out with Audrey Rose’s uncle in his forensic laboratory while he’s examining a body. The usual :D

4. Can you describe your favorite aspect of being a writer? 
My favorite thing about being a writer is staring down the blank page, and pushing myself to create something that didn’t exist before. Even on days when it’s a little harder, I love it. Honestly? I can’t imagine life without writing and playing with words and language. I don’t believe in competition with my peers, but I’m all about competing with myself to learn and grow and continue honing my craft. A bonus aspect about being a writer: being part of this amazingly supportive community. I love being surrounded by people who are as passionate about books as I am.  

5. Your book is easily one of my (and others) most anticipated reads of 2016. How did it feel having your debut become a BEA buzz title? How was the BEA experience?
Ahhh! Thank you! Everything has been a complete whirlwind with this book—I’d been on submission with two other projects with my agent and we’d come SOOOO close—but with SJTR we had an offer within a couple weeks. That was mid-October and then news came about the buzz panel in early February and I still can’t quite believe it. (Even after attending BEA!) I think because it’s taken years to get here, it all feels surreal. I keep trying to bottle the whole experience up and hold it close to my heart forever.

BEA was my first ever bookish event, and it was INCREDIBLE. I got to meet so many wonderful readers (and authors!) and the response to SJTR blew me away.  I seriously thought no one would want any ARCs or even know about it. I kept telling myself that just being there was an experience I’d dreamed of for six years and to let everything else go…And then…every time there was a galley drop, the ARCs were snatched up before they were set up! We even had a spontaneous signing with a line that went out the booth. I wanted to hug everyone for making it so special for me.

I also maaaaaybe had tears watching my editor talk about how she fell in love with my book during her panel. When she announced there would be two sequels I had to take a second to compose myself. It’s every writer’s dream to have an editor fall in love with their characters, and I think in that moment everything became Very Real. The struggle to get here was definitely worth it. Gah! I’m totally turning into a sappy mess again.

Getting to meet and take pictures and chat with online friends/bloggers/fellow Sixteeners was the absolute best, though. My only regret? Being unable to pack everyone up and take them with me.

About the Book:

Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord's daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.

Against her stern father's wishes and society's expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle's laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.

The story's shocking twists and turns, augmented with real, sinister period photos, will make this dazzling debut from author Kerri Maniscalco impossible to forget.
Book Buy Links: GoodreadsAmazon | Barnes and Noble 

About the Author:

Kerri Maniscalco grew up in a small town just outside of New York City where her love of the arts was fostered from an early age. In her spare time she reads everything she can get her hands on, cooks all kinds of food for her family and friends, and drinks entirely too much tea while discussing life's finer points with her cats.

STALKING JACK THE RIPPER, her debut gothic horror, is coming September 20, 2016 from JIMMY Patterson Books/Little, Brown. It incorporates her love of forensic science and unsolved history.

Social Media Links:  WebsiteGoodreads | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Tumblr | Pinterest


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Have you read this book? Why are you excited to read it? 


  1. Fantastic feature Rachel!! I met Kerri at BEA and she was such an absolute dear! I'm just sad the two times I saw her I totally failed to take a pic with her! *waves at Kerri*
    So excited to read SJTR, hopefully soon once I clear a bit of eARC backlog so I won't feel guilty!

  2. I'm so excited for this book! I love anything Jack the Ripper. Talking with Kerri has gotten me even more excited for it. As for the crime solving, I'm going to say yes! I'm great at puzzles plus I have degrees in chemistry, criminal justice, and sociology, so I have all my bases covered! :)

  3. I actually hadn't heard of this book but I plan to read it now

  4. I heard so many good things about this book at BEA

  5. I want to read this book because I've never read anything like it before :)

  6. Thanks so much for this awesome interview! I loved the research aspect of it. I've had this fascination with Jack the Ripper previously and I remember when I was younger, my sister won first place in an essay contest about Jack. I've also loved other YA renditions, including Name the Star, so this is totally up my alley. It seems like a really unique take on it, and of course, I love the angle of the strong female MC. Can't wait to get my hands on this book! Christina @ Ensconced in Lit

  7. I can't wait to read this amazing story! I'm so exited for a Jack the Ripper YA novel! I would like to think I could solve a crime... but maybe I just have too much confidence in myself haha

  8. Ooh, I can't wait to read this book! I've heard nothing but stellar reviews, and I love mysteries, so I'm very excited to pick this one up!

  9. I've had my eye on this book for a few months now. It sounds fantastic. I enjoy not figuring the mystery out!

  10. I've got this on pre-order! This book looks fantastic and from reading the sneak preview that was released with the book cover, I'm already hooked! I like trying to solve mysteries, but hope that the author will make me work hard to figure things out!

  11. Oh this book sounds really intriguing! I haven't heard about it before, but I'm adding it to my TBR. Can't wait to read it! Plus, the cover is beautiful. Great interview!

  12. Ever since seeing Kerri at #BEA2016, I have been excited about this book. I have it on pre-order from Amazon and suggested it to several friends. I hope my research skills as a librarian would enable me to solve mysteries. I feel like I do that at work on a regular basis anyway!

  13. This sounds like such a fascinating book! I am morbidly intrigued by how the research Kerri did will translate in the story! Thanks so much for the chance to win!

  14. I love mysteries and something set in this time period and it being dark and gory I'm so intrigued by the whole idea of it! Can't wait till it comes out! Thanks for the giveaway!

  15. I am so excited for this book!! Words can't describe how psyched I am for it! Kerri ia the absolutely sweetest person ever!! We even have a thread name #Kerreem I'm serious. I am very confident that I I can solve all the mysteries in this book!!! So excited!! πŸ’™πŸ˜πŸ™ˆπŸ˜Š

  16. SJTR is one of my many anticipated reads for the year! can't wait to read this book! ive heard great things about it so im sure it'll be amazing! :) great interview! wish i could've met kerri at BEA!

  17. to add to my previous answer, i would love to be able to solve mysteries but would most likely be awful at it XD

  18. I haven't read this book but I really really want to!!!I grew up ready Nancy Drew mysteries, I've always loved these type of books, anything that involves solving some sort of crime!!! I can't wait for this book to come out!!!

  19. Soooo excited for this book! I love mysteries so much!!

  20. Honestly, first it's because of that awesome cover and then the synopsis! I love mysteries! I'm no Nancy Drew, but I think I can handle it!


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