Thursday, January 7, 2016
Miss Peregrine's home for Peculiar Children Book Review *No Spoilers*
My first book of 2016...didn't go so well.
I'm not sure how to describe this book in my own words without spoiling it so here is the blurb from the back of book and it's Goodreads page Here.
"A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of curious photographs.
A horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.
A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography."
Disclaimer: These are all just my OPINIONS, nothing more. Take them with a grain of salt. Note: I get HARSH with this book even though I ultimately gave it a 2.75 out of 5 stars. If you liked this book and don't want to hear it torn apart...you may not wanna read on! You've been warned.
I really wanted to like this book a lot because the premise sounded very interesting and it has a lot of hype surrounding it. Sadly...it mostly just pissed me off.
The first chapter angered me so badly. I had forgotten about the blurb though and where the main character is a 16 year old boy (chapter 2 reminded me) so I was able to give some le-way there. The reason it angered me? So much of it appears to be ableism. Being disabled and having many medical issues myself, and knowing many others out in the world that do too, there were quite a few things that pissed me off. See those yellow tabs? Stuff that particularly angered me for one reason or another. Not all of them for the same reasons though.
Even trying to believe it was just part of the main character I felt the author went over-board. It's one thing to make a character flawed, I am all for character flaws as real people have flaws, but when the main character can be such a whiny arrogant pretentious spoiled priviledged jackass that we are supposed to think highly of and feel sorry for it makes it hard to like the book. There were times when I was happy when shitty things happened to the main character...and I was supposed to feel sorry for him? Normally I am an easy book crier and feeling for every character who isn't outright evil. Also if a character is MENT to be unlikable then i'd have no issue with it. I like having unlikable characters...when they are actually ment to be unlikable.
There were also other things throughout the book that irritated me, including disrespecting certain groups of people, and a few things I wasn't sure of (blue tabs). The entire book really rubbed me the wrong way. I've heard the author, Ransom Riggs, is a nice man and assuming that to be true I could give him the benefit of the doubt that some things he just wasn't aware of how it could come across and others were because it is his debut novel. That said some things still felt over-board and very irritating. Also some things just felt lazy.
It also felt pretentious at times but that is more forgivable to me, annoying but still, than other things. Also want to state the purple tabs are things I particularly liked, it wasn't all bad! The main character did show that he had a heart even if he could also be an asshat as well, and some parts of the book as i've said did interest me and have me wondering what was going to happen. I will say the main character, Jacob, does go through some character development for the better and there was a twist I wasn't expecting.
It took about 1/3 of the book to get remotely interesting to me personally, which is fine in that i'm apparently not one to give right up on a book if i'm not enjoying it, I have this habit of wanting to give them a chance. There were parts here and there that interested me but it felt slow until about 70% into the book. I did mostly enjoy the ending and with that, and a bit of the Q&A in the back of the book talking about the next one, I probably will pick up the second book in the trilogy.
Go ahead, say it, curiosity killed the cat...let's hope satisfaction brings it back. I have heard the first book in the trilogy is the best but i've heard the last 2 are better much more often..so i'm hoping i'm in that camp.
There is the first chapter of the second book at the end, so I finally decided to read it (I wasn't sure if I wanted to at first or not) and I do like it a lot more than the first chapter of this first book. Something about these peculiar children and their journey does have me interested and addicted.
I'm not sure what that says but it looks like I might plunge on with the trilogy, though i'm not in the "I NEED to know what happens NOW" state of mind more like "meh, I wanna know but..i'll read it when I read it". Even though I ended up giving this first book a 2.5 out of 5 stars on Goodreads (2 because there are only full stars on Goodreads). Also the book and pictures are really pretty..but pretty is nothing without a good story.
As i'm going back over this review a day later after writing it originally but not yet posted i'm already losing interest in reading the next book. I don't know what i'm going to do. The last trilogy I read had me dying to get my hands on the next book...this one...no. I really tried to like it and honestly i'm thinking I was too kind on the rating now.