Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs


Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children Book 1)

Synopsis:

A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of curious photographs.

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.

Review:

I first read Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children back when it first came out. I remembered enjoying it, but didn't remember the storyline at all. When it was chosen for my one book club book for this month I was excited to re-read it, especially since I had been meaning to read it for a while now so I can read the second book in the series.

This book is really a children's book. I had forgotten that. I think it is billed as young adults, but it is written like it is for children younger than that. I kept forgetting that the main character, Jacob, was sixteen. He seemed like he was maybe 10-12 based on the way he was written and the things he would say and do. He just didn't seem like a teenager. So that was my one issue with the book. Really I thought all of the kids were in the 12 and under range, but they weren't. When you saw a picture of Emma later in the story I was just like wait what? How old is she? It was strange. If the kids would have just been aged a little bit younger it would have worked much better for me.

The idea behind this book, how it came to be, was quite interesting. I don't think I have ever read something that was based on photos like this. The author apparently collects interesting old photos and based a story around a group of them that he had. Interesting idea and for the most part I felt like it worked. Occasionally it did seem like he was trying a bit too hard to make a story behind one of the photos and get that included in the overall storyline, but it was fun nonetheless. Really I rated this as a children's book so a lot of things were fine by that standard.

Jacob grew up with his grandfather telling him outlandish stories about monsters and children who had all kinds of powers (like the invisible boy and the girl who floated). He believed his grandfather until the kids at school make him question the stories. After that his grandfather leaves him alone about it, but it is always there. The story picks up when he is sixteen and his grandfather is getting old and everyone thinks he is going  a bit crazy. He goes out to help him one day and sees some things that are peculiar. His grandfather was killed, but everyone thinks it is just wild dogs or something. Jacob isn't convinced and everyone thinks he is going a bit crazy as well. Finally he realizes he needs to go find Miss Peregrine and her home for peculiar children on the small island in Wales where his grandfather grew up.

When Jacob and his dad arrive on the island things start to get strange. This is really a simple adventure story. Jacob finds out about Miss Peregrine and the world of the peculiar children and it is interesting. As an older reader you can see what will happen well before it does, who is involved and whatnot, but it was still fun to read. A fun adventure and I look forward to reading the next book and seeing what the next adventure has in store for everyone. Should be interesting.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

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