Original review posted here: http://www.yourentertainmentcorner.com/2011/12/book-review-miss-peregrines-home-for-peculiar-children-by-ransom-riggs/
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is by far the most fascinating, eerie and intriguing book I think I’ve ever read. It not only grips you from the first page but doesn’t let go until after you’ve finished reading. Even then you want more. You need to know the next leg of the children’s journey and where Ransom Riggs will be taking his protagonist, Jacob, next. Wherever that may be I will happily follow. I couldn’t get enough of the story and flew through it in about a day. I like to think most books can be read in a day, but I find that isn’t true. Only really good books (the ones you absolutely can’t put down) seem to be read in mere hours. This is one of those books.
What I like most about Miss Peregrine’s Home is the mystery surrounding the children. Jacob learns about them through pictures his grandfather shows him, as well as, the stories of his life as a young refugee during World War II. The tales he tells Jacob as a child of only six-years-old seem fantastical and full of make believe, yet the young Jacob believes them. It’s only when he’s older that he begins to question his grandfather’s honesty. As a reader, you tend to wonder just what the truth is and how such extraordinary things could be true. This is Jacob’s journey, his turning point in life. Following him through this journey is the meat of the book and we learn just what Jacob is made of. Not only that, we come to find Jacob is a bit of a twit. He’s a spoiled rich kid at the tender age of sixteen who doesn’t know what he wants to do with his life. I doubt the thought of college even comes to this kid because he can only think about what he doesn’t want to do—which seems to be working. You get a few laughs when Jacob describes why he can’t be fired from his job. It is a curious position he has in life, one I can’t empathize with. I mean, how horrible can the life of a rich teenager be, right? But I grow to like Jacob and even feel for him when he discovers who he is and what he’s meant to do in life. You should know he questions often what his purpose in the world is and doesn’t discover the answer until he steps out of his world and into another—one full of peculiars.
I highly recommend Miss Peregrine’s Home for anyone who enjoys reading something different. This book isn’t like anything I’ve read before and the photographs included in the novel are a phenomenal tool used to help tell the story. Not only do they add to the eerie feel of the book, they aid in your understanding of the characters. Seeing these depictions—of what are essentially flea market finds, per the author’s notes—puts you in Riggs’ mindset. To know he sat down, looking at photographs and visualized an entire novel (if that is what he did) is amazing. You won’t be disappointed and I think you’ll enjoy it as much as I did. It’s a definite must read and I didn’t mind purchasing this book for continuous enjoyment.