Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children


It seems like everyone has the best intentions of reading this book or have already finished it. I had my eye on it when it gained notice on the New York Times best sellers list but didn't approach the book... or a bookstore for that matter. I had banned myself from buying more books in September with far too many to read and the reading never being done. Then the end of the year approached and I broke down.


Working in a tutoring center I can read while not helping students. But the end of the year was also the start of final papers and tests which meant I couldn't be knee deep in Charles Dickens and easily hop up to help a student. I needed something enjoyable and quick. So I headed to the bookstore.

After flipping through the book and reading the first page I found it to (hopefully) fit my expectations and a few hours later I was beginning to read.

It seems that people have an assortment of expectations for this book: they want it to be scary, creepy, or just a little strange. They think it is entirely about the lives of children in this tiny home and they seem disappointed when it isn't exactly what they expected.

But this is what I expected: entertainment. I wanted to be taken somewhere else and experience another world. I wanted characters whom I could cheer on; no matter if I loved or simply put up with them. My expectations were met and happily so.

Now... the plot. I feel that I could easily give too much information away but I will use as much caution as I can. The main character, Jacob, has a relatively normal (if borderline boring) life. He has a job he hates, parents who are neither here nor there, and a somewhat insane grandfather who can see "monsters". As a survivor of WWII, It's easy to picture what monsters he may assume he is seeing. But assuming isn't always the way to go and there is certainly more than what meets the eye with nearly every character in this book.

There is a certain creepiness that is obtained by the use of vintage photographs through out the book and I certainly would not be willing to experience most of what the characters do. But in the end I found myself eager to find out what happened next with all of the characters and excited to begin each chapter.

Ah, I forgot, I did have one assumption for this book: that it was an open and close type of story. That everything would be wrapped up at the end. It isn't that type of book. There will be more (I believe a second book is on its way) so my assumption was wrong.

And I am completely okay with that!

So people thought it was too scary, others were bored because it wasn't scary enough, and some teased it for seeming to be a strange version of X-Men. Well, I still enjoyed it and I intend on reading the next book when and if it comes out. This book is incredibly popular right now and it's easy to get sidetracked by all the praise and criticism. The best thing to do is go out to your local bookstore or library and flip through it's pages. See what the book says to you and decide then if you're willing to read it. If you happen to like it, remember me, I liked it too.

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