Tuesday, November 1, 2016

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

Synopsis: 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. (from the inside of the cover)

Review: The premise of this story intrigued me, in particular, the use of the vintage photographs. Originally, Riggs wanted to do a picture book of the strange photographs, but after collecting them, a story immerged and he wrote this book.
My other reason for picking up this book is a bit more personal. My best friend went to high school with the author, and I spent time in Sarasota, where the author grew up and where the first part of the book takes place. Riggs described Florida as only a true Floridian can. The nuance is impeccable. It was like being back in the fine city.
As for the story, it was complex, amusing, scary, and suspenseful. Riggs accurately depicts the mind and actions of a teenage boy. Told from the viewpoint of Jacob, we follow him from Sarasota to the small island near England, as he searches for answers to the death of his beloved Grandfather. There, he finds pieces to his past, his family – and himself.
With a delightful macabre, a lighthearted strangeness, and a ghoulish heart, this story explores prejudice, history, family, and what makes us who we are. This story is complex enough for adults, but tame enough for middle-school aged readers. Worth reading, particularly for a chilly winter night. 

Bookmarks: 8 of 10

Awards: None (although it spend many weeks as a #1 New York Times Bestseller)

ISBN: 978-1-59474-476-1
Year Published: 2011
Date Finished: 10-7-2016
Pages: 352

No comments:

Post a Comment