Thursday, March 13, 2014

Review: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children
by Ransom Riggs

Available as: hardcover, paperback, Kindle edition, ebook, audiobook
Pages: 348
Publisher: Quirk Books
Publication date: June 7, 2011
Suggested tags: young adult, fantasy

First in the Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children series. From Goodreads:
"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."

{ I received a copy of this book through Goodreads First Reads. }

I originally read Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children when it first came out in 2011, but I reread it now in preparation for reading the sequel, Hollow City. When I read it in 2011, I immediately fell in love. No, more than that - I fell in obsession. I talked about this book to anyone who would listen. I flipped through the pages over and over again, poring over the vintage photos. I got lost in the world of Miss Peregrine and her peculiar children. It's a brilliant concept, and it combines some of my very favorite things: time travel, paranormality, and vintage photography.

And that last line of the synopsis - "anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows" - well, really, how could I not love this book?

I'm not going to go into too much detail with the plot, because half the fun of reading this book is in the experience of discovering things along with Jacob. But I will talk about the photos, because they are fantastic. At first, I will admit, I found myself viewing them like Jacob did in the beginning - lame photography tricks, obviously altered - but as the story went on, I came to view them as believably peculiar... And they are interwoven with the story expertly; Jacob comes across photos as the story unfolds, and we are able to see what Jacob sees. The photos are used to introduce characters, to set the mood, and, in some cases, to freak you right the heck out. And I mean that in the best way possible, because this book is deliciously dark and mysterious.

Riggs's writing too is excellent. It's by turns suspenseful, sweet, and humorous at all the right moments. His storytelling is nicely paced and wonderfully descriptive, so that you feel like you're right there with Jacob on his peculiar journey. The end wraps things up, but at the same time it leaves them wide open for the next book so that almost anything can happen from there. I'm excited to see what happens to Miss Peregrine's peculiar children next. And I certainly hope there will be plenty of photos.

Final verdict: I'm obsessed with it! I thought this book was amazing! It's now officially one of my favorite books! I immediately bought a copy for myself because I will be rereading it again and again! I shall be shouting about it from the rooftops for days and I am currently recommending it to everyone I come in contact with!

{ Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children book trailer }

More about Ransom Riggs }

Ransom Riggs's Goodreads profile
Ransom Riggs's website
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