Title: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Graphic Novel)
Author: Ransom Riggs, Cassandra Jean (illustrations)
Genre: Graphic Novel, Young Adult, Fiction, Paranormal
‘I used to dream about escaping my ordinary life, but my life was never ordinary. I had simply failed to notice how extraordinary it was.’
INFO | Goodreads
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(Adapted from the Goodreads summary)
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.
Overall, I enjoyed the story, and the plot was what saved the graphic novel from being a disaster. I loved the mystery and horror elements combined, and the unexpected twist of what the monsters really were (but don’t worry, no spoilers in this review!)
For my tastes, the illustrations were a little bit too messy and simple, and rather than this coming across as artistic, they felt a bit lazy instead. However, there were some details in the drawings which did redeem it for me – the gas masks, the birds and the monsters were all done very well.
I also loved the contrast of real photographs alongside the illustrations. Ransom Riggs actually collects old and unusual photographs as a hobby, and there’s an interesting little article on the photographs here, for anyone as disturbed as I was by them. Before reading the article, I had naturally assumed that they had been edited for the book, but it seems as though they really are just strange pictures – how intriguing!
I always knew I was strange, I never dreamed I was peculiar.
After a little research, I have also learned that the story is currently being made into a film directed by Tim Burton (who is one of my favourite directors!). According to Ransom Riggs’ website, it is set to be released in March 2016 – this has made me very happy indeed! The trailer, which I find uncannily merry, can be watched here:
Lastly, I had assumed before reading that the book was a standalone story, but I was wrong, and for some reason that really disappointed me. I’m not convinced that it will work as a series, but we’ll see, we’ll see. I really did enjoy the story, but I think I’ll be reading the later books in the traditional format so I can experience Ransom Riggs’ writing style.
I’m actually going to do a slightly different rating system for this graphic novel. The story and characters were strong, but I felt it wasn’t complemented by the style of illustration. Fans of the story might think otherwise, but as a first taste of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, I personally feel it didn’t do the story justice.
Story Star Rating: ★★★★ (4/5)
Illustrations Star Rating: ★★ (2/5)