Sunday, November 20, 2011

Book 34: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Jacob Portman grew up enthralled by the adventures his grandfather had lived through.  Abe Portman was an orphan, WWII veteran, and monster killer.  But after being taunted at school, Jacob decides that he doesn’t believe in these fairy stories any longer.  His parents explain that Abe was haunted by memories of Poland during the Holocaust and that the Nazi’s were the monsters that he fought, and Jacob moves on with his life.  It isn’t until Jacob is 15 that all of his grandfather’s stories start to seem probable.

One night Jacob’s grandfather calls him in a panic for the key to his weapons closet claiming that the monsters are after him.  Jacob dismisses his worry as the delusions of an old man but stops by after work to see him anyway.  When he arrives, Jacob finds his grandfather dying in the woods and sees something that makes him think his grandfather might not have been crazy after all.  Are the monsters more than just a metaphor for Nazi’s?  Did the kids at the orphanage really have special powers?  After months of confusion and misery, Jacob’s parents let him take a trip to the remote Welsh island that Abe lived on after leaving Poland.  While there, Jacob finds out that his grandfather was telling the truth after he meets the kids that Abe grew up with and finds out that the monsters are indeed real. 

The book has odd pictures scattered among that pages to illustrate the story and apparently all of these creepy pictures are real.  It’s kind of neat, if a little gimmicky.  Overall though, this book was entertaining and a really quick read.  The end is open enough for a sequel, which I would definitely be interested in reading.

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