So on my list of books I wanted to read in 2021, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children was on that list. I know the book originally came out in 2011, but I just didn’t pick it up at the time because I was too busy reading other books and working on my undergraduate degree. So I decided this was the year to read it and see if it was worth the hype… and at least for me, it wasn’t worth the hype.
I didn’t enjoy this book at all. I spent the first half of the book wondering where the story was going. Then we got to where the story was going… and I just wasn’t for it. I know this book had been out for almost a decade now, but I am still going to put the spoiler warning on this next part.
So these are some of the many things about the book that didn’t vibe well with me. *SPOILERS START HERE*
1. The relationship between Emma and Jakob. She was his grandfather’s childhood love and then they end up liking each other. It’s weird. Had she left with Abe, she could have been his grandmother! I know she isn’t his grandmother, I know they were only childhood love interests, but it’s walking the very fine line toward incestuous. I don’t think their romantic interests in each other is appropriate.
2. Keeping Victor in the house even though he’s dead. I get that losing someone you’re close to is hard, but keeping him in the house instead of burying him because they “want to see him”. IT’S WEIRD! And he literally played no role in the book whatsoever. So they just had a dead body in their attic for no purpose other than sentimentality. Sorry, but that’s not a good enough reason to keep him in the attic.
3. It took too long to get to main point of the story. I was almost two hundred pages in and still had no clue where the story was going. The book is only 352 pages long… and I was bored. Very bored.
*END OF SPOILERS*
Honestly, I kind of felt like this story was the dollar store version of the X-Men. You have a group of children with special powers who are guided and protected by a mentor who also has special powers and there are forces in this world that want to kill them and/or use their powers for their own gain.
What I did like about it was the use of sepia photographs. I think that made it easier to visualize the characters and was something different. Besides that, I have no interest in continuing the series. I actually went online and read the synopsis for the books that are out… and it was disorienting. This series feels like a mess to me. Maybe I’m too old for this series now. Maybe my tastes have just changed too much, but Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children will never make my recommended reading list.
So the day I finished the book, my fiancée and I decided to watch the movie. While the movie was better, it wasn’t that much better. *MOVIE SPOILERS START HERE*
- Ava Green as Miss Peregrine was brilliant. She was a perfect fit for the role and she is a QUEEN!
- I hate that swapped Emma and Olive’s powers. There was no reason to swap their powers. By swapping their powers, you’re taking away a huge part of their character’s identity and I’m against that. That would be like having Wolverine shoot lasers out of his eyes and have Cyclops have claws and healing abilities… no, just no!
- They actually gave Victor a purpose in the movie, but it was weird.
- From the start of the movie you could see that they wouldn’t be following the book perfectly. I understand the need to cut some characters/change some other characters, but the ending was NOTHING LIKE THE BOOK! It was like they read the end of the book, went “Nah, this isn’t good enough for the movie. So let’s change it” and then they went in the completely opposite direction! JAKOB DOESN’T RESCUE MISS PEREGRINE IN THIS BOOK! HE DOESN’T STAY IN HSI TIME TO BRING BACK HIS GRANDFATHER! HE DOESN’T TRAVEL THROUGH DIFFERENT TIME LOOPS TO GET BACK TO EMMA! Seriously movie writers, what the fuck were you doing?! … sorry, but it really makes me angry when they just throw the source material out like it’s nothing. I may not like the book, but that doesn’t mean I want to see the author’s vision completely changed.
- Though I’ve read that they plan on making the second book into a movie, they basically changed the movie ending too much for that to be possible. The way the book ended opens up the reader for a grand adventure… the movie cuts the adventure off at the knees. So it’ll be interesting to see if they can pull it off, but I have my doubts.
*END OF MOVIE SPOILERS*
So overall, this is a series I won’t be continuing on with. It’s a very rare occurrence for me to not complete a series, but this one just wasn’t for me. If you love this series, then I respect that you do, I’m just expressing why for me it isn’t a series I want to finish.
Have there been any book series that you haven’t been able to complete? What was the reason? I would love to know! I hope everyone has a great weekend!