Title: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
Series: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children #1
Author: Ransom Riggs
Format: Hardcover, 352 pages
Pub. Date: June 7th 2011
Source: Half Price Books
Well.... This book is certainly peculiar.
I'm always a bit hesitant to read books that are crazy popular. This is an example. But with the recent movie release.... I just couldn't resist. At the end of the pages, this book left me feeling a mixture of disappointed, irritated, and mildly amused.
First, I'll go over what I liked about it. I can honestly say I haven't read a book like it before. I really enjoyed the photographs and letters that were included throughout the novel. It added a vintage feel of authenticity to the story. The descriptions of location were really well done- I felt like I could explore the house or the island alongside Jacob. It was enough to keep me reading and exploring.
But I didn't really enjoy the flow of the book. It felt slow until the last two chapters or so, as though this were more of a prequel or a primer for reading the next story. It made the story drag, and it made it take longer for me to get through reading it.
The book also felt a bit disjointing to me. I didn't really feel connected to any of the characters, other than Jacob and Emma. That's disappointing, because there's a whole house full of interesting, "peculiar" children that I would have loved to learn more about. But other than a name and a brief description of what makes them peculiar, I was left hanging. There's a half-attempt at a love story awkwardly placed in all the chaos. I don't mind romance in the slightest, but it came across as forced.
And then there's the ending.... Which is where I felt the most torn. On the one hand, it's where the book picked up speed for me. And that's good! But it also unfolded a bit like an episode of Scooby-Doo. A trusted figure takes off their face, ends up being the bad guy, and then a ragtag team of spooky teenagers/children jet off to save the world.
Overall, I'm not mad that I read this book. It held my attention well enough, and I really liked some aspects of it. I enjoyed the idea of the time Loops, the photographs, and the integration of history/the war throughout. Unfortunately, it fell short in some ways too. I don't think that I'll reread this one any time soon, but I might pick up the next book in the series if I come across it.
I feel like young adults and fans of Beautiful Creatures might enjoy this.