“I had just come to expect that my life would be ordinary when extraordinary things began to happen. The first of these came as a terrible shock and, like anything that changes you forever, split my life into halves: Before and After.”
Jacob Portman is a quiet, normal 15 year old boy. Working at the local shop and hanging around with his mate Ricky the only strange things that happen to him is when his Granddad, Abe, starts dreaming up that the monsters are after them. Jacob was brought up with Abe telling tales of children in the home where he went after he fled Poland in the late 1930’s. These children were very peculiar, some could levitate and others could lift boulders bigger than themselves over their heads. When Jacob got to an age where he stopped believing the stories Abe didn’t push him, he just let it go. Then Abe dies, after telling Jacob that the monsters had found him. Jacob finds Abe in the woods behind his house and while everyone else is convinced that wild dogs killed Abe, Jacob knows what he saw... And so begins the need to find the home in which Abe was brought up... but will Jacob find anything peculiar when he gets there?
So I was a little worried about starting this book before I went to bed one night... I thought it would really really scary and really freaky... but to be honest, it was only the latter. There were a few scary bits especially towards the end but seriously, don’t be too put off by thinking its scary!
A good story gets me in the mood to really want to read and not put down a book and man Miss Peregrine’s did not disappoint on the story front! I literally spent hours just reading and nothing else because I needed to know what was going to happen and those last 50 or so pages? You would need enough time to read in one sitting trust me! I loved the writing style and the way you felt like you were there. Riggs honestly made me imagine every nook and cranny of the island that Jacob visits, down to vivid images of the people who lived there! And he made me want to find this island and visit it myself! Its awesome and one Jacob finds the house it gets even more so!
The images throughout the book really added to the story too. You’d be sat there thinking “well i can kinda see what he means” then youd see the photo of who he was talking about and it would be exactly what you thought! To be honest, some of the photos freaked me out more than the story did, especially Miss Peregrines herself! There was just something weird about her! But the mix of images and story really helped create an amazing sense of atmosphere.
The characters within the story are just incredible too. I thought I knew all of the children Jacob talked about before he even got to the island, I believed in them fully even if Jacob didn’t and wow, I loved each and every one of them from the start! I wish I was peculiar! As for Jacob he was ok but he gets much better, you can kinda tell in the beginning of the book that he wants more from life than what hes got but hes too worried about getting more! But by the time he gets to the island I really felt something for him, i could relate to him in a way and I loved joining him on the adventure!
The only problem I had with Miss Peregrine’s is that there’s one part of the story (I can’t say what as it will be a spoiler!) that’s a little confusing. I found myself having to read over little bits to ensure that I was reading it from the right place and stuff like that, it didn’t detach me as such it just wasn’t as clear as I would have liked!
This was only one bit thought and everything else was incredible! I wish I had the same way for words as Rigsg does because he is incredible. I think if he spun me a line about anything in the way he wrote this book I’d believe the most impossible of things! I really recommend this book because I loved it and even though its damn freaky at times, its worth getting freaked out!
Miss Pergrine’s Home For Peculiar Children is published by Quirk Books and available widely in the US and via the internet in the UK. It is Ransom Riggs’ first novel and I really hope there are more to come! My copy was received in exchange for an honest review from the publisher.