Sunday, November 27, 2011

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

by Ransom Riggs

This book was not what I was expecting even though I am not sure what I thought it would be. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is somewhat of a World War II story and somewhat fantasy/science-fiction. The hero is your average sixteen year old American boy who isn't really so average after all. When his grandfather dies, Jacob sets out on a mission to understand his last words and make sense of some peculiar photographs he left behind.

Abraham Portman's parents sent him to a rescue mission in England prior to the outbreak of WWII. As he came to understand the monsters who were killing his people, he decided to leave the safety of the orphanage and join the war. But nothing is really as it appears in this rather eccentric novel. The war is real, the monsters are real and so are the peculiar children in Miss Peregrine's care. Scattered throughout the book are photographs of these curious kids, which just adds another quirky dimension to the story.

Overall, this was a quick and fun read. I did feel like the book was split in two halves and almost two genres (part one adventure and part two fantasy/sci-fi). That may have been intentional since Jacob says his life can be described as before and after the event. Another downside was the ending, which was a little open-ended and could lead to a sequel.... but not so much that you were left hanging. I think Harry Potter fans would like this one.

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