Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

73%

46 Critic Reviews

To all the readers out there who do not read horror, let me tell you this isn’t horror - it’s more of a thriller. If this was a movie, it would be like jump scares. Things are shocking but not petrifying, and overall the story is amazing.
-Guardian

Synopsis

The #1 New York Times Best Seller is now a major motion picture from visionary director Tim Burton, starring Eva Green, Asa Butterfield, Ella Purnell, Samuel L. Jackson, and Judi Dench.

Bonus features
• Q&A with author Ransom Riggs
• Eight pages of color stills from the film
• Sneak preview of Hollow City, the next novel in the series

A mysterious island.

An abandoned orphanage.

A strange collection of very curious photographs.

It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, 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, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows.

“A tense, moving, and wondrously strange first novel. The photographs and text work together brilliantly to create an unforgettable story.”—John Green, New York Times best-selling author of The Fault in Our Stars

“With its X-Men: First Class-meets-time-travel story line, David Lynchian imagery, and rich, eerie detail, it’s no wonder Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children has been snapped up by Twentieth Century Fox. B+”—Entertainment Weekly

“‘Peculiar’ doesn’t even begin to cover it. Riggs’ chilling, wondrous novel is already headed to the movies.”—People

“You’ll love it if you want a good thriller for the summer. It’s a mystery, and you’ll race to solve it before Jacob figures it out for himself.”—Seventeen
 

About Ransom Riggs

See more books from this Author
Ransom Riggs is the author of the novel Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children and The Sherlock Holmes Handbook (Quirk Books). Before earning an MFA in film production from the USC school of cinema-television, he worked for several years as a journalist, photographer, and documentary film editor. His award-winning short films have screened at more than 70 film festivals worldwide. Currently developing a number of original feature film projects, he is also a contributing writer and blogger for mental_floss magazine and Mentalfloss.com.
 
Published June 7, 2011 by Quirk Books. 358 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Horror, Young Adult, Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction, Comics & Graphic Novels, Children's Books, Education & Reference, History, Romance. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children
All: 46 | Positive: 36 | Negative: 10

Kirkus

Above average
on Mar 31 2014

Though Jacob’s overdeveloped back story gives the tale a slow start, the pictures add an eldritch element from the early going, and along with creepy bad guys, the author tucks in suspenseful chases and splashes of gore as he goes...A trilogy opener both rich and strange, if heavy at the front end.

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Publishers Weekly

Good
on Jan 16 2017

It's an enjoyable, eccentric read, distinguished by well-developed characters, a believable Welsh setting, and some very creepy monsters.

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Guardian

Good
Reviewed by bookworm.30999 on Oct 23 2015

To all the readers out there who do not read horror, let me tell you this isn’t horror - it’s more of a thriller. If this was a movie, it would be like jump scares. Things are shocking but not petrifying, and overall the story is amazing.

Read Full Review of Miss Peregrine's Home for Pec... | See more reviews from Guardian

Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Rosa.Reader on Nov 11 2014

You could tell that every part of the book was thought out carefully, which resulted in a generally beautiful thing...Jacob didn't have much to him. He was kind of your average Joe, really...Seriously, we need some more depth here...Having said that, the children he meets are brilliantly complex...

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Entertainment Weekly

Good
Reviewed by RACHEL ORVINO on Jun 24 2011

With its X-Men: First Class-meets-time-travel story line, David Lynchian imagery, and rich, eerie detail, it’s no wonder Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children has been snapped up by Twentieth Century Fox.

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Booklist Online

Above average
Reviewed by Michael Cart on Jan 14 2017

Though the author’s skill does not always match his ambition—his pacing is particularly uneven—his premise is clever, and Jacob and the children are intriguing characters.

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Pajiba

Below average
Reviewed by Krista on Oct 02 2012

...was encouraged by an editor to create a story to surround those pictures. It's like musicals based on artists' songs - it isn't natural and if anything only proves a point that it shouldn't be done.

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PopMatters

Good
Reviewed by Catherine Ramsdell on Jul 17 2011

In a time when so much summer entertainment seems to be more of the same (i.e., Transformers and bad cable television) Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is a pleasant surprise—a story that is fresh and new, engrosses and grips...

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Look At OKC

Good
Reviewed by Betty Lytle on Jul 03 2011

The pictures make this eerie, gothic story unique. While it will appeal to young adults, readers of all ages should enjoy it.

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Watermark Books And Cafe

Good
Reviewed by Cat Connolly on Nov 01 2013

Rife with haunting photographs of the "Peculiar Children" who once inhabited (or do they still?) Miss Peregrine's home, this book reads as if one of Ann Radcliffe's plots were put into modern prose by Scott Westerfeld, making it accessible both to young adult readers and adults alike.

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SF Signal

Good
Reviewed by Jessica Strider on Jul 10 2011

I loved how the author amalgamated their existence with history as witches, changelings and circus performers. It gave the book a sense of history, and the kids a practical reason to hide.

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Starburst Magazine

Good
Reviewed by Cara Fielder on Jan 14 2017

The first half of this novel does have a brilliant creepiness to it that slows slightly as you are warmed to the children and their individual characters. But then you are quickly whisked up in the threat to them, rather than set by them.

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io9

Good
Reviewed by Kelly Faircloth on Jul 22 2011

It's almost as if Riggs wrote the entire novel to make sense of this series of bizarre photos. Whether or not that's the case, these illustrations elevate a perfectly decent YA novel to something weird and cool that truly stands out.

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Crosswalk.com

Above average
Reviewed by Glenn McCarty on Jul 18 2011

It's like a creative writing class exercise: scatter a dozen photographs on a table, then concoct a story out of them. The result is a promising debut that's the perfect goose-bump concoction for summer.

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The Daily Fig

Good
Reviewed by Laura Forsythe on Jun 07 2011

...turns out to be the other kind of time travel book. The kind where time travel is not just a way for some slacker to research the past without cracking a book, but rather essential to the substance of the events being described.

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Booked Solid

Good
Reviewed by Brenda on Mar 31 2012

Teens and adults looking for an original read might want to try this one. For me, I saw the very strange photo on the cover and said to myself, “This is a book that I need to read.” I am very glad that I did.

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Seventeen

Good
Reviewed by RACHEL LUTZ on Jun 07 2011

You'll love it if... you want a good thriller for the summer. It's a mystery, and you'll race to solve it before Jacob figures it out for himself.

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Alternative Magazine Online

Excellent
Reviewed by Marty Mulrooney on Apr 11 2011

Ransom Riggs’ debut novel is a beautiful book that immediately engulfs the reader with its vivid, fully-realised world.

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YA Highway

Good
Reviewed by KRISTIN BRIANA OTTS on Jun 19 2011

We read about a setting, and we see the setting. This, added to the world-building surrounding both Wales and Miss Peregrine's orphanage, create a gorgeous, haunting novel that left me (and other readers, I'm sure) hungry for the sequel.

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http://www.iasl-ia.org

Above average
Reviewed by Kenya Arrants on Dec 03 2012

The novel has some great action and suspense, although some readers may be disappointed with the open ending (set up for the untitled sequel, slated to be released in June of 2013). I would recommend this book for junior high and up...

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Teen Ink

Good
Reviewed by StephanieMichelle on Jan 16 2017

Readers, both common and uncommon, will immediately feel welcome at Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. It's a clever, quirky, charming masterpiece certain to become a modern classic.

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Luxury Reading

Good
Reviewed by Sarah Lelonek on Aug 17 2013

There were just enough photographs to answer some questions, but not enough to overwhelm me. I only wish that there was more time to fully develop the conflict toward the end of the book. It felt a little rushed, since most of the book was about Jacob’s acceptance of a more mystical world.

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http://skrishnasbooks.com

Good
Reviewed by Swapna Krishna on Dec 09 2011

The story of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is really magical. It seems like it would be a super creepy book from the cover, but it’s not really. Of course it has spooky and frightening elements, but it’s more of a fantastical novel with some dark twists.

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Story Snoops

Above average
Reviewed by Shannon on Jan 16 2017

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is a great chilling teen read that is not overly challenging and is certainly gripping from the first page.

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The Book Smugglers

Good
Reviewed by Thea on Jan 16 2017

No misgivings here! I loved this book from cover to cover and cannot wait for more – and there better be more, considering the dramatic finale.

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Pretty Books

Excellent
on Aug 19 2012

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is a wonderfully unique and inventive book with colourful characters, a mysterious story, and a splash of historical relevance, incorporating vintage photographs that bring the story to life.

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My Bookish Ways

Good
Reviewed by Kristin on Aug 05 2013

...by turns heartbreakingly delicate and unflinching, fraught with wonder and danger, and sparkles with delightful and terrifying magic. I highly recommend this book to kids and adults alike, and have never experienced anything quite like it!

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Of Books and Reading

Excellent
on Dec 22 2011

The writing is brilliant – Ransom Riggs ensures the necessary elements are brought together perfectly – the characters, the plot and the photographs merge beautifully.

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The Introverted Reader

Good
Reviewed by Introverted Jen on Jul 09 2013

I really didn't have a clue where the plot was going so I just sat back and enjoyed the ride. It took some very unexpected twists and turns and I have to say that I'm looking forward to the next installment.

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Cuddle Buggery Book Blog

Below average
Reviewed by Archer on Jun 27 2012

It was almost original. It had a strong start and an almost strong cliffhanger for the next book (which I probably will read despite all the problems with this book). I just feel that if Ransom Riggs...had actually done a little research rather than build the story around these found photo’s then it could have been something truly wonderful...

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Jen Robinson's Book Page

Good
on Mar 14 2013

It's well-written, with engaging characters and a memorable premise. I'll be interested to see where Riggs takes Jacob next. Recommended!

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Frenetic Reader

Below average
Reviewed by Khy on Jun 10 2013

It's got one of the greatest premises I've encountered, but without anything special in the narration, I just can't say I'm a big fan of book.

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Wordsmithonia

Below average
Reviewed by Ryan on Jul 08 2013

That's not to say I didn't enjoy this book, because I had a lot of fun reading it. It just won't be life changing or all that memorable to me.

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Forever Young Adult

Above average
Reviewed by Sarah on Jun 02 2011

Jacob's contemporary voice combined with characters from the past creates a charming, antique-y tone that reminded me a bit of The Chronicles of Narnia. While I occasionally wished for a little more teenage 'tude from Jacob, I enjoyed seeing the magic unfold through his eyes.

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Parental Book Reviews

Good
Reviewed by Amy on Jan 16 2017

This book was so great, I had high expectations for this book and the book exceeded them greatly. It was really spooky, yet heartwarming and romantic at the same time.

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Stargazerpuj's Book Blog

Good
on Jan 16 2017

I really enjoyed this strange, at times eerie adventure and look forward to the next instalment with Jacob and the children.

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The Literary Life of the Well-Read Wife

Good
on Jan 16 2017

Why did this book make such an impression on me? Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children is at times a classic adventure story and at other times…its originality is mind blowing.

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Insatiable Book Sluts

Below average
Reviewed by Amy on Feb 16 2012

I wasn’t in love with this book. Don’t get me wrong–I didn’t hate it, and wouldn’t tell anyone not to read it–but it didn’t blow me away...we’re just so eager for the next big thing–the next Harry Potter or Hunger Games–that we’re willing to overlook that this book was just–meh?

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Belle's Bookshelf

Good
Reviewed by Belle on Oct 23 2011

There is just too much left open for this to be the case with Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. It's a shame, because for the majority of the book I was thinking it would easily make it to the top of my all-time favourites list. As it is, it was still a wonderful read and I can't wait to get my hands on the sequel.

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The Book Zone (For Boys)

Good
Reviewed by BOOKZONE on Jun 22 2011

This is a book for boys and girls of all ages from confident reader young teens all the way up to readers in their 80s and 90s. If you don't like horror then please do not ignore this book for fear that it will scare you. Yes, there are a handful of creepy moments but it is certainly not a scary story.

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JeriWB Blog

Below average
Reviewed by Jeri Walker on Aug 27 2012

The second-half of the novel grows thin as the plot loses its momentum. A budding romance with Emma, the forever young but chronologically old former flame of his grandfather Abe, adds some interest and conflict, but not enough.

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Unabridged Andra

Good
Reviewed by Andra Lyn on Mar 20 2012

Though I don't want to give too much away, the Peculiar Children were endearing and terrifying at the same time.

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Looseleaf Leaflets

Above average
on Oct 01 2012

I’m not particularly fond of being jarred. However, I found the children in the book—their personalities, their powers, their different reactions to their predicament—so interesting that even when I realized there was no way the story could wrap up by the end of the book, I didn’t get too upset.

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Breaking Books

Above average
Reviewed by Susan on Dec 05 2011

Overall, I liked the uniqueness of the book and the photos really added to it. The writing style was good and kept the book moving at a good pace.

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Uncle Berg's Unsanity Files

Below average
on Oct 04 2011

Perhaps you can be more tolerant of its failures, more forgiving of its mistakes than I. But perhaps you will find yourself as I find myself, pouring back over the story in your mind, sifting through the missed opportunities with mounting outrage.

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Boys Do Read

Good
Reviewed by Virginia on Jun 19 2011

I was definitely not expecting where the author took the book. Love it! The book is being sold as a teen book, but it feels a bit like an adult book with kids in it. It's thoroughly enjoyable...

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Reader Rating for Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children
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Rated the book as 4.5 out of 5

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