Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children Book 1) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004FGMDOQ/ref=cm_sw_r_other_apa_4rNpAb2KNVZP0

SPOILER WARNING: I avoid spoilers through most of this but there is a major reveal that I talk about at the end.

I borrowed this book from the library on kindle and whem I didn’t finish it on time I turned off my Kindle and then returned the book through the web. Now that I’ve finished it i can finally start syncing my Kindle again.

I went into this book with only a few memories from the movie trailer to tell me what it was about. The meta-concept is that the author had started collecting weird vintage pictures that had no history or context. Knowing that he would never know the history of these pictures the author decided he needed to invent a history. The book is riddled with these older pictures along with invented contexts which is very cool but sadly they didn’t show too well on my old kindle touch.

The book is the first part of a trilogy and very much the origin story of the tale. I’m a fan of origin stories so I enjoyed the extra time put into our protaganist Jacob’s family life that perhaps dragged on for longer that it needed to. It will be interesting to see if some of these support characters will reappear in the next two books.

The story is told first person but rather than giving us an unreliable narrator we are instead given a slightly cluely narrator. Everything he experiences happens but Jacob is often terrible at interpreting things that are obvious to the genre savy reader.

Overall the characters are likeable or at least sympathetic enough to keep you caring what happens to them. These children have abilities but they are not for the most part superheroes. But for a couple exceptions the abilities are more changeling, circus freak inspired which can dig into some dark places but not so much that you start to dislike them.

Spoilers Time

The biggest gotcha for me is our main character’s power set and how it interacts with the timeline of the world. So the peculiars have always existed and are a naturally occuring phenomena. The bad guys of the tale are more recent in that they were a group of peculiars who wanted to achieve godhood and failed spectacularly resulting in Tunguska/turning themselves into veiled monsters.

Jacob’s power is the ability to peirce the veil and see the monsters for what they are. Does that mean that before the monsters existed there was a whole class of peculiar that was never recognized as such?

Add to that Miss Peregrine and other peculiars like her have the ability to create time loops of a given day that can be entered into from other days. With the right knowledge one could jump back in time by going from loop to loop. The momsters are described as being good at this without the implication being fully explored. How far back in time have the monsters been able to travel? In which case has there always been a need for someone who can see them? Also when the monsters came into existence did all of time suddenly change because otherwise the people who became the monsters would have known about the monsters right?

These may be questions for the sequels to answer.

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