The trailer for Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children looks pretty good. The first time I saw it I got excited about the look of the hollowghasts (the baddies). They look so much like a favorite artist of mine’s style that I actually turned to my husband and said, “I wonder if Brom was the concept artist for those?” And before I see the movie, I wanted to read the book.
I was expecting something fairly light and whimsical, even with the scary look of the hollowghasts. So when the book started in modern times and was obviously going to be about a rebellious male teenager, that took me by surprise. I don’t know if it makes any sense, but this book feels like you’re reading in black and white. In a good way. Once you start getting into the action of it, you get lost in the feel of the desolate, remote locations and the slipstreams through time.
I can’t say any of the characters were particular favorites of mine. They’re all intriguing in their own ways, and the disparity of what makes them peculiar is clever and engaging. They feel unmoored from time, though, and as if they are pretending that Jacob is really his grandfather, which feels strange.
There’s a sort of unreality to all of it—a tilt that makes everything peculiar. For me, that also meant I felt slightly distant from the characters and action—but I was definitely intrigued enough to keep reading.
As far as the photographs go, which were apparently Riggs’ inspiration for a lot of the characters, I can’t say they added much to the story for me. But then, I’m not a photography buff, nor am I into historical items like old photographs. Mostly I think they just contributed to the feel of the oldness of everything.
Ultimately I am interested enough to want to read the second and third books, but not quite to the point where I had to rush out and buy them so that I could find out what happens next.