First time I saw this book, I was intrigued. The cover held my complete attention. And as exaggerated as it may sound, my breathing quickened and I felt an aching need to read it. No kidding. In every single one of my visits to the bookstore — and I visit it a lot — I held Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs in my hands and repeatedly read the back cover synopsis. The one thing that stopped me from buying it was my fear of anything horror. Read: I’m a scaredy-cat. And the book felt horror to me. For months, I read reviews about it online — something I don’t normally do (I know it’s weird; I love writing book reviews but I don’t usually like reading them; there are some exceptions, of course; anyway, this could be a topic for another day!) — to see if others thought it was as frightening as I’ve imagined it to be and if it would be possible for my easily scared self to read it. It was only after my friend Jany read it and told me that it wasn’t that scary that I finally decided to be brave about it and get it over with! Ha-ha.
And I’m glad I did! It was beautiful in an eerie kind of way. The book felt very much like it was meant for Tim Burton to direct (and I love Tim Burton). (He is going to direct the film, right?) And to all those scaredy-cats like me — I can’t be the only one? — it is not scary at all! It is eerie, yes, but wasn’t something that gave me nightmares, as I’ve initially thought. I loved the peculiar children — I just wished there were more. There were some pictures of children that I was expecting to find out more about, but sadly only a few, in my opinion, were talked about in detail. OH, and the pictures! A novel with pictures is something new to me. I totally loved the experience! The addition of these black-and-white vintage photos made the atmosphere of the book more … haunting. Or strange. Or cryptic. Or glum. I don’t really know. And I mean it in the best way. Another word it reminds me of is “abandonment.”
I loved Riggs’ writing style as well. I thought it was witty. And because at first I only expected to be scared, I was surprised that some parts of the book actually made me laugh. Also, the time travel was awesome. I LOVE anything with time travel in it. Even if they always make my head hurt. They make me analyze too much.
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs is the first book in the Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series and was published in 2011.