Review: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children – Ransom Riggs

After reading the summary and a few reviews, I have to say I wasn’t very interested in reading Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, but not because it sounded awful, or anything, rather it just didn’t really appeal to me. However, a friend of mine offered to loan me the book in exchange for borrowing one of my books (Paper Towns) and I accepted, figuring I’d give it a chance anyway.

In all honesty, the beginning was slow, and I had to push myself to read on, and I’m thankful that I did. It wasn’t long before it picked up and so many things were happening all at once. Jacob, a sixteen year old who just witnessed his grandfather’s mysterious death, is presumed crazy and his parent’s send him to see a psychiatrist, Dr. Golan. Dr. Golan, who at first isn’t very likable through Jacob’s eyes, tries to help Jacob work through his problems, in hopes to get him over the crazy stories his grandfather told him and help him move on from his death.

“I used to dream about escaping my ordinary life, but my life was never ordinary. I had simply failed to notice how extraordinary it was.” ― Ransom Riggs, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children

In this pursuit, Jacob and his father end up embarking on a trip to an island, located off of Wales, where his grandfather was sent during WWII and stayed for with other fugitives in Miss Peregrine’s home (thus the title) and discovers all sorts of new things about the island, his grandfather, and everyone who lived at Miss Peregrine’s home.

I found myself growing attached to all the characters, even Dr. Golan and Jacob’s father, and felt like they were all very realistic and easy to picture as actual people (aside from the peculiarity and such). However, the one thing that really bugged me was how there was always something, some knowledge, that was being kept from us (Jacob, and me as the reader). After each new secret or piece of information that Jacob finally gets his hands on, it’s suddenly apparent that there’s something else he needs to know but that they, the children and Miss Peregrine, I mean, refuse to tell him. I understand that it’s supposed to be a mystery, and that to keep it a mystery some things cannot be revealed, but there’s just SO MANY things that are kept from him and it’s not just things that he can’t figure out, it’s things other characters are deliberately keeping from him, like, “I know this thing, it’s important, and you should know it too, but I can’t tell you, sorry.” It was frustrating, but other than this, I really enjoyed this book.

Overall: I would recommend this book to anyone who likes mystery, suspense (and secrets!), and fantasy. The plot is well-developed, the characters are great, and the writing was enthralling. One thing that really stuck out to me, though, was how Riggs wrapped up the ending. He managed to end it in SUCH a satisfying way, despite having a sequel on its way, and he didn’t leave any loose ends, some of which I had completely forgot about (Whoops!) until he tied it up. In all honesty, I may not continue on with this series, as it’s not something I love, though I did enjoy it, but hey, maybe I will.

 

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