Written by Ransom Riggs
Number 1 in Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children
Original Language: English
Read from 2015-04-04 to 2015-06-15
Read in English
Review: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is a peculiar book. It tries to be an impossible amount of things at the same time. It doesn’t succeed at being all of them, but it makes a very honourable attempt, and it’s not like anything else I’ve read.
I’d describe this book as a genre-defying fairy-tale for grownups. I mean that in the best way possible, but also as a bit of a warning. The reader will have to give themselves over entirely to the book and the world it creates. Disbelief has to be suspended, and one has to allow for the unlikely and fantastical, even by the standards of the “rules” set out by the book itself, to happen. I wouldn’t really blame anyone for not being on board. The characters (with a few exceptions) don’t become much more than props which help drive the story forward, and several places the plot feels very forced.
If one manages to look past all of those things, this really is a wonderful book! I allowed myself to be pulled into it, and it repaid me with dividends. Reading it awoke in me a sense of childish wonder and adventure that I can’t remember having experienced in quite a while.
And that’s not because this book is childish, because while it often uses language and tropes one would associate with books for children, it treats its readers as adults. There are a lot of elements that make this story very grown-up, both in terms of subject-matter and plot. I really felt that the story managed to keep hold of the playfulness, sense of adventure, and the magic of a story written for the wide-open mind of a child, while seamlessly venturing into mature territory when the story requires it. The style really appealed to me, and I really liked the story.
I’d recommend this book to anyone who wants a modern-day, addictive, and really entertaining fairy-tale.