Thursday, February 13, 2014

Shelf Life [adult]

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children: The Graphic Novel
Story by Ransom Riggs; Art by Cassandra Jean

Since the original novel was released in 2012, no doubt many people have already discovered this bestselling tale with its disturbing black-and-white photographs of levitating, two-faced and absurdly strong children. In short, there exists on an island near Wales a decrepit old home where Jacob Portman discovers a small community of “peculiars” – children who possess individual strange abilities – living in a temporal loop crated by the enigmatic Miss Peregrine, in hiding from nightmarish creatures bent on destroying them. Jacob’s beloved grandfather was once one of these children, and Jacob comes to realize he may have inherited from him a peculiar, terrifying but life-saving talent of his own.  Sounds gothic enough, but when you add Cassandra Jean’s blend of manga-like illustrations (which go from stark black-and-white to full colour and everything in-between) and photography collage, you get a fascinating interpretation of this novel that will enthrall both teen and adult audiences for hours. It is not recommended for children or for bedtime reading, given that it is a rather graphic graphic novel, and that means a bit of gore and a few depictions that could prevent a peaceful night’s sleep (particularly of the creatures that hunt the children. Ick.) Jacob’s struggle will appeal to any teen, especially readers looking for a darker, stranger journey than a certain boy wizard’s, and for adult fans of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series, the graphic novel of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is sure to please. Find it on our shelves in the graphic novel section, or at spl.bibliocommons.com under the tag “shelf life reviewed”. (For those who enjoyed the text-only version, the second in the series is due out this month.)

This review was published in the Stratford Gazette on February 13. Written by Robyn Godfrey, Librarian.

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