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Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children) Paperback – June 4, 2013
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From the Publisher
Amazon Best Books of the Month, June 2011: As a kid, Jacob formed a special bond with his grandfather over his bizarre tales and photos of levitating girls and invisible boys. Now at 16, he is reeling from the old man's unexpected death. Then Jacob is given a mysterious letter that propels him on a journey to the remote Welsh island where his grandfather grew up. There, he finds the children from the photographs--alive and well--despite the islanders’ assertion that all were killed decades ago. As Jacob begins to unravel more about his grandfather’s childhood, he suspects he is being trailed by a monster only he can see. A haunting and out-of-the-ordinary read, debut author Ransom Rigg’s first-person narration is convincing and absorbing, and every detail he draws our eye to is deftly woven into an unforgettable whole. Interspersed with photos throughout,
“A tense, moving, and wondrously strange first novel. The photographs and text work together brilliantly to create an unforgettable story.”—John Green, New York Times best-selling author of Looking for Alaska and Paper Towns
“Readers searching for the next Harry Potter may want to visit Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.”—CNN
“Riggs deftly moves between fantasy and reality, prose and photography to create an enchanting and at times positively terrifying story.”—Associated Press
“I read all of the Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children books and I loved them.”—Florence of Florence + The Machine
“[A] thrilling, Tim Burton-esque tale with haunting photographs.”—USA Today Pop Candy
“With its X-Men: First Class-meets-time-travel story line, David Lynchian imagery, and rich, eerie detail, it’s no wonder Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children has been snapped up by Twentieth Century Fox. B+”—Entertainment Weekly
“Peculiar’ doesn’t even begin to cover it. Riggs’ chilling, wondrous novel is already headed to the movies.”—People
“You'll love it if you want a good thriller for the summer. It's a mystery, and you'll race to solve it before Jacob figures it out for himself.”—Seventeen
“This peculiar parable is pure perfection.”—Justine magazine
“One of the coolest, creepiest YA books.”—PopSugar
“It’s an enjoyable, eccentric read, distinguished by well-developed characters, a believable Welsh setting, and some very creepy monsters.”—Publishers Weekly
“An original work that defies categorization, this first novel should appeal to readers who like quirky fantasies. Riggs includes many vintage photographs that add a critical touch of the peculiar to his unusual tale.”—Library Journal
“Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children is a wonderfully original and inventive book with colorful characters, a mysterious tale woven together with threads of historical relevance, and incorporating unforgettable vintage photographs which bring the story to life.”—Geeks of Doom
“Brace yourself for the last 70 pages of relentless, squirm-in-your-chair action. I loved every minute of it.”—Cleveland Plain Dealer
“Hands down, this is one of the best books of recent years...both creepy and terrifyingly delicious.”—Forces of Geek
“Though technically a children's book, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is more Grimm's than Disney, and Riggs images, dropped like bread crumbs, could lead audiences of any age happily down the path of its spellbinding tale.”—Florida Times-Union
“In a time when so much summer entertainment seems to be more of the same, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is a pleasant surprise—a story that is fresh and new, engrosses and grips, and provides enough clues so that the ending makes sense and seems thoughtful.” —PopMatters
“A twisting tale of phenomenal children, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is a book that both children and adults will love.”—Romper
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Top customer reviews
I confess I got this book solely on account of its cover. The creepy, black and white photograph of a (very children-of-the-corn looking) girl, standing stock still, staring directly at the camera, as if contemplating how best to eat your soul stood out like a corpse at a holiday party. And the title? How could I resist? I plucked the book from the shelves and brought it home. Then (as you already know, if you read my post from a few days ago), I got distracted (things were shiny), and the book languished on my shelf. Then low and behold, the book will soon be a movie--directed by Tim Burton no less--and I didn't even want to look at the previews without reading the book first.
Miss Peregrine's is a young adult novel, but one that transcends the genre and is enjoyable even for those of us who have left high school far in the past. The best books in the genre (think Harry Potter) feature young adult leading characters and high school age problems, but also rise above the mundane to speak to the problems of a bigger adult world. The less enjoyable books in the genre (sparkly vampires *cough*) leave you wondering if you might have enjoyed the book when you were thirteen, but fairly confident you were never that insipid (though, obviously, all teenagers are insipid by nature).
Miss Peregrine's is one of the better books in the genre. Following the death of his grandfather, sixteen year old Jacob finds out that the fairy stories his grandfather told him as a child--about a magical island inhabited by children with paranormal abilities--may not have been just stories after all. Jacob sets off to learn the truth about the island with its mysterious house of peculiar children, all watched over by a bird who smokes a pipe.
The story is accompanied by photographs throughout the book, all black and white, with that particular creepy vintage vibe you get if you google search "scary Easter bunny". The pictures are all quite striking, and serve to add to the atmosphere of the book. When you learn that all these photos are actual vintage photographs (most unaltered), collected by the author, it adds to the creepy vibe (what were those people doing?) rather than detracts from it. The book is largely an adventure story suffused with all the creepy atmosphere an ancient, fog-shrouded island off the coast of Wales can deliver. There are a few scary/creepy/violent moments, but these are generally around the level of the dementors in the Harry Potter novels (as, after all, this is still a YA novel, creepy atmosphere not withstanding).
In all, this is a great read, and a fine example of a YA novel not only accessible for adults, but enjoyable as well. The characters are interesting and generally well done, and the backdrops, first of Florida, and then the Island are fully realized and contribute well to the tone of the book. I enjoyed my time with Miss Peregrine's and can't wait to read the second book in the series.
I do, however, reserve judgement on the movie version.
Check out more reviews by checking out my blog!
This book was one of the first books SHE mentioned wanting to read on her own. We jumped in the car and raced off to the book store to see if we could capitalize on her "read all of the books mood" once she flipped through the book she was hooked in... inside the store! We wanted to order it on amazon, so we negotiated the two day wait for shipping with her by offering to buy buying all three books in the series. She agreed.
Some people may have an issue with this book's language or somewhat sketchy subject matter being appropriate for children, but honestly... She is 11. It's nothing she hasn't heard by now. If I am completely honest- With as much effort as we have put into encouraging her to read over the years, if she asked us to buy her a copy of Helter Skelter I might seriously consider it. Mom might not, but I would.