Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

October 31, 2013

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children Plot summary (from the publisher): A mysterious island.



An abandoned orphanage.



A strange collection of very curious photographs.



It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive. 

A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows.

Warning: Spoilers below!

Liked:

  • The photographs were, hands down, the best part of this book. I found them absolutely fascinating, and was even more intrigued by the author’s comments about the world of “found photography” at the end of the book. I had no idea such a thing existed and that there are avid collectors of these creepy pics. TBH, I had no idea what this book was about before reading it, so the pictures first confused, then delighted me. I loved how they perfectly matched the characters (though after reading that the pics came first, then the book, that part became less magical).
  • I’m excited that a sequel is in the works with even more photos and more peculiar children waiting to be brought to life. I usually don’t look forward to sequels, as they’re hardly ever better than the original, but I have a feeling Riggs can outdo himself on the next installment.
  • The author definitely gets an A for telling a unique story. I was engrossed almost from beginning to end, and I don’t even particularly like this fantasy genre.

Disliked:

  • I wasn’t too interested in the main storyline about Jacob tracking down the creature that killed his grandfather. All that stuff was boring to me. I just wanted to read about Miss Peregrine, the children, and their lives in the loop.
  • It’s unfortunate that Jacob had to be saddled with such typical “YA novel” parents. The father doesn’t understand him. The mother has no patience for him and is hardly a part of his life. I get that Riggs needed a way to make it somewhat easier for Jacob to leave his old life behind and stick with the peculiars, but still. I ended up skimming a lot of the family drama.
  • Things got a bit gory at the end, which was a little surprising since this is supposed to be a young adult book.

Rating:

I had no idea what to expect from Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs, and was therefore pleasantly surprised at how original and compelling it was. The peculiar children were the best part of the book by far, and certainly made it worth sitting through some of the action sequences that I didn’t care for. I give this book 4 stars out of 5.

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