Monday, September 19, 2011

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

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children
Ransom Riggs
First published June 7th, 2011
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.

This book started with a bang. It was very creepy, exciting and really intriguing, but it all went downhill from there. Once the mystery around the house was explained - which was fairly early and without any nuance - it became a very boring and almost childish story, which I didn't expect at all.

One thing I can say I enjoyed was the photographs- they're scattered throughout the book, all black and white and remarkably creepy. They add a nice eery touch to the story and gives it a really unique flair.

The plot is what I didn't like. After its strong beginning, it fizzles into this bland and predictably dull tale. Don't get me wrong. It's very unique and unconventional so I can see it's appeal. It's also well written and does stem from great creativity, but I found it lacked too much detail and sophistication. The characters, too, fell flat and as a few things went unexplained we were left with scattered holes in the plot.

This book is marketed for young adults but definitely feels more juvenile, like a child's fairy tale, which is not what I expected hence leaving me feeling a bit underwhelmed.

2/5 hot espressos