Last Week on Inked Brownies

Review ::Hype or Like Friday:: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Hype or Like Friday is a meme that was created on Goodreads by  Jill @Rant And Rave About Books,  Larkin @Wonderfilled Reads, and Britt @Geronimo Reads. The focus of the group is to talk about hyped books and whether they deserve such high praise. Each month, there’s a Book of the Month that will be reviewed on the last Friday of said month. To join the group or find more information about it, please go to the Goodreads page HERE.

October’s Book of the Month is Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs, and…it’s the last Friday of the month today, so here’s my take on the book!vintage-1735195_640

A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of curious photographs.
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.

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Okay, I will start by saying that I own a paperback of this book as you can see on the picture up here, but I listened to the audiobook version via my new app (Storytel; totally recommended but not available in many countries yet, unfortunately) for about 75% of the book. Hence, my final judgement is mostly based on that.

Let’s start with the book in general. As you’ve probably heard or seen somewhere by now, there are pictures in this book. Real pictures of real people. At first, I thought it was awesome because they’re not just your average pictures. They’re black and white, and old, with either peculiar looking people or people posing peculiarly (or both) in front of the camera. You can see an example of this on the cover with a floating girl in front of a creepy looking background.

After a while, though, it started to get on my nerves a little. The pictures in itself were still pretty darn cool, but to me, it seemed like the author just spread out a bunch of those odd pictures on his desk and invented a story around them. Which, let’s be fair, he probably did, but it was so obvious? Here’s a guy with a red beard who’s looking kind of creepy. Ya know what? Let’s give all the evil characters a red beard!

Mixed feelings about this! On the one hand, it’s a certainly a creative way to write a book. On the other hand, I just felt like I could’ve come up with the same kinds of background stories as well? Meaning it’s not very imaginative at all.

The less you know about the story, the better; the best quality of the book is not knowing where the story will lead you. Which accounts for many books, of course, yet, some of them can be re-read again while discovering all kinds of new and exciting things. If I have to read this book again, I don’t know if I’ll be able to abstain myself from falling asleep.

While the characters could’ve been awesome, most of them fell pretty flat to me. This is most likely largely due to the narrator of the audiobook version, but just looking at the characters in general doesn’t get me very excited either.

Jacob, the protagonist is a 16-year-old boy with ‘issues’. I didn’t really feel any sparks coming off his character. In fact, he’s often so boring he can’t even entertain an idea.

Emma Bloom, the female main character (in my opinion), is more adventurous but seems a little too eager to me at times when it comes to smooching. She could be a product tester for Viagra for crying out loud (don’t worry, though, little ones, there is no real sexy time in this book. I’m just saying it would’ve been a different case if it were up to Emma!).

The only two characters I liked were Miss Peregrine, and Horace, a boy who always dresses like a true gentleman from the ’40’s, monocle included.

Since I’m not going to tell you more about the story, apart from the fact that it really isn’t as scary as I thought it would be, let’s move on to my thoughts on the audiobook. 

Ah yes, the audiobook. When I started listening to it, I thought: Great! Slow paced, clear voice, I can totally work with this without getting distracted and having to rewind whenever I lose track of the story because of it.

Then, Jacob’s grandfather, Abe Portman, was introduced. Abe is Polish. Abe, however, speaks with a German accent. Mkay, shit happens, it’s probably a fluke, right?

WRONG

When it comes to the narrator (Jesse Bernstein): he doesn’t know his arse from his elbow when it comes to accents. Miss Peregrine? A German transvestite. Emma Bloom and most of the other peculiar children? Mentally challenged transvestites coming straight out of the Mary Poppins movie. And just when you thought you heard it all, there’s a Welsh sheep farmer who sounds like Apu from the Simpsons…

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Needless to say, this pretty much ruined a LOT of my experiences with the book. The suspense that is in there falls dead, and while the atrocities of accents are kind of funny at first, they will really start to get on your nerves after a while.

As I’ve heard the series gets better (and I bought the boxed set right away because I thought it was going to be awesome), I will read the sequel and hope for the best. It will probably help a lot that they have replaced the narrator with someone who is capable of doing a proper British accent. Jesse Bernstein has a nice and soothing voice, but he should really stick to his own American accent.

TL; DR

The story, in general, was okay but not as exciting as I hoped for. Can still be recommended to the faint-of-heart because it’s really not that scary. The narrator of the audiobook couldn’t hit sand if he fell off a camel when it comes to his European accents. This book is a hype for me: an okay book mostly. I hope the movie is better.

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Links to the book:

Amazon US
Amazon UK
The Book Depository
Bol.com
Goodreads

 

 

 

About Anne (231 Articles)
Dutch book reviewer who reviews in English. Grammar nazis beware!! I like brownies. And chamomile tea.

80 Comments on Review ::Hype or Like Friday:: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

  1. I am reading this with my oldest right now. We are taking turns reading out loud. I was uhm a little startled that it had so many vulgar words in it. Normally not a problem for me but trying to explain them to a 9 year old is a no go. So now I am mostly reading it and editing as I read it to him. Its a nice bonding time. I really wished he would’ve picked Percy Jackson or something this book is not holding my interest.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, some of it was a bit odd for sure! I know Emma is secretly my mother’s age or so, but I also thought her coming on’s a bit…inappropriate? Hahaha, bonding is what matters (but I do hope he will pick something else next time for you as well 😉 )

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great review I feel the same as you about the book. It didn’t blew me away, but I loved the pictures and parts of the story. This meme looks fun to do, I’ll check out the goodreads page now 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! 🙂 Yes, it was definitely not as exciting as anticipated, but not a truly horrible book, thank god. You totally should! 🙂

      Like

  3. I never realized that the girl is floating in the cover.
    My sister (who doesn’t read but watches a lot of scary movies) had the same opinions. She also told me that the book wasn’t scary though the pictures were interesting.
    Hilarious review! I have also heard that they changed the movie a lot?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t either until I read about it in the book XD. Your sister was obviously right ;). And the pictures were definitely interesting but also kinda off when it comes to the story at times. Thank you! 😉 Oh, I haven’t seen the movie yet, but I hope it will capture some more of the possible excitement.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Awesome review Anne! I did enjoy this and the sequel, but I agree for basically the same reasons you listed, that it definitely didn’t live up to the hype. Which is why I haven’t gotten around to reading the 3rd book yet.😕

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Damn, this review is awesome! Well played Anne, it starts of quite normal and innocuous and then bang in comes the product tester for viagra line! Followed by the narrator bit, mentally challenged transvestites and a sheep farmer who sounds like apu! Quality, made me smile.😀

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Geronimo Reads // 28/10/2016 at 21:59 // Reply

    Lol love your review! Straight and to the point. I attempted to read it this month but I was already so bored 10 pages in that I want sure if I even wanted to continue.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha! It could’ve been a bit shorter for the straight and to the point part I suppose 😂 but thank you so much!! You should probably move on to something else then 😉. It takes a long time before the story gets going.

      Like

  7. I don’t understand all the hype with this book, I gave it four stars on Goodreads, and I could not stand how Jacob came across as a whiny brat.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. awesome review! hahaha @ “couldn’t hit sand if he fell off a camel!” and what Drew said- agree with that 100%! ☺

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! Hahaha, that was all thanks to you dear 😁. Because this was a rant, I thought it would be a great time to grab the irish book of fecking insults and see if there was something I could use from it. And hell yes!! I was thinking of putting in a little disclaimer at the end at first, but then thought I’d wait and see if you would notice it without one 😂😂😂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Megan @ bookslayerReads // 29/10/2016 at 01:18 // Reply

    Oh no! I hate to hear that about the characters and stuff. I’ll be starting this one for HoLF pretty soon. I’m a bit behind on my reading. Nice review, Anne! Sorry to hear it wasn’t great.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Again, as I mentioned on Jill’s post, I was a fan 😛 It doesn’t sound like the narrator helped at all though! A German transvestite… haha still rolling in the floor. Even though I have an opposite opinion on this one, I love this review!!! You make everything so fun ❤ I am still confused though, as to how so many people had this listed under spooky reads?! I read it when it first came out and cannot remember it being advertised as such. I must be missing something. Fabulous write up though!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha! Yes, I should’ve just stopped listening to the audiobook but I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to finish the book in time otherwise with all the household chores having piled up 😊. Girl, do you know Sascha Baron Cohen’s Bruno? I swear, Jacob’s grandfather sounds like him. Thank you! 😘 I have no idea either. I guess the marketing must’ve changed, maybe due to the spooky season? Glad you liked it 😊💜

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Awesome review! Have to say I loved this book- but I think I’m the only one right now cos so many people didn’t! Haha you’re part about the audiobook cracked me up! How typical to muddle up all the accents and make them ridiculous- I bet that changed the experience a little!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Awesome review!!!! i hated this book so damn much though lol however your review was fun to read.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Thank you for this lovely review, Anne! I haven’t read this book yet, and if I’m curious about it, I’m also nervous and wonder if I’d like it, or not…. I guess I’ll have to try haha 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • There are lots of people who like it and I can understand why! So you should definitely try it some day :D. Just stay away from the audiobook 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Oh no, narrators can really make or break a book. Thanks for the warning – I was contemplating the audio for this one!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, definitely don’t spend any money on it unless you feel like getting the Apu experience and see for yourself if it’s funny or horrid 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  15. In the end I never read this XD And I didn’t watch the film either… I was excited at first but I ended up losing interest . Loved your honesty!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I might watch the film at one point. The poster of it looks so colourful! xD Thank you! I have to admit I liked having something to justifiably rant about again for once ;).

      Like

  16. Totally agree with you 100%. The accent comparisons were awful! I was like what is he talking about? He was such a bad narrator. I would’ve rather heard this story from the dead grandfather’s POV. I think he would’ve been a lot more interesting. He was at least unhinged and sounded like he’d be entertaining. This book is definitely a snoozer! 😴 I don’t understand the hype. I could do a post- If you like boring books, read this… Lol 🙂 Nice review, lady! 👍

    Liked by 1 person

    • You know I was talking about the audiobook narrator right? :’) If he would’ve used his crazy German Bruno accent which he uses for Jacob’s grandfather during this entire book, I think I would’ve died of annoyance! But yeah, the hype definitely what it is: a hype, lol. Thank you! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  17. OMGawd, Apu the Welsh sheep farmer… 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂 sorry, but… 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂. I have three paerbacks of this! I won one in a box of books from Quirk books, then they sent me one, and then when they sent me the sequel they sent another one! I still haven’t read it. Ha ha. I’m in no rush because I think the movie looks stupid and won’t be watching it. I have heard the same thing, that the books get better. I have no idea when I will get to it though. Thanks for sharting your thoughts so eloquently. XD

    Liked by 1 person

    • ❤ 😀 Hahaha, bloody hell Quirk books! shakes fist and I had to buy my own copy for crying out loud!! 😉 I like the movie poster which was in a Dutch subscription box last month, but I think I’ll just watch it on Netflix when it comes out there ;). Haha! ‘eloquently’ is spot on :’) but you’re welcome!

      Like

  18. BAHAHAHA! @ “she could be a product tester for Viagra” DONE! in stitches over here, great review Anne! dontcha just hate when you get a bad narrator?!?! I get 1 credit per mth from Audible & I’m always scared i’m gonna end up with a dud LOL! but it can seriously make or break a book for me. Usually if I start an audiobook & can’t tolerate the narrator, I quickly switch over to physical book just because I want to give the book a chance. I’ve heard mixed reviews for this trilogy but lately it’s been more nays than yays 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    • 😀 ❤ Thank you!! Gawd, definitely! I believe I already set the bad pretty high for narrators in general but this one was like he was telling a fucking parody or something :D. You can change the book if you don’t like it with Audible right? Cause that would suck big time if you this shit and then that’s it for the rest of the month! I should’ve done the same, but I kept on going because I wouldn’t be able to finish the book in time unless I multitasked while hammering floors and such :’) :’). I noticed that too. Are you going to watch the movie?

      Liked by 1 person

  19. I’m having the opposite experience: was underwhelmed by the movie, but will hope for better from the book. NOT the audio version – thanks for the warning! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • HAhaha, yes, as long as you stay away from the audiobook, you might end up having a better experience with the book I hope! 😀

      Like

  20. I’m pretty sure I’m not supposed to laugh so much when reading a review! “She could be a product tester for Viagra” Only you can come up with such sentences 😂 Fab review ❤ I’m so sorry the audiobook ruined the story for you. All those transvestite accents to deal with! I’m reading the book in November because I received it on Friday, leaving me no time to read it at all! I was really hoping this one would be a like, but I’ve only seen one good review of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • 😀 ❤ I secretly have Liz to thank for that particular sentence. She sent me an Irish Fecking Book of Insults for my birthday and this quote just went perfectly with Emma Bloom’s description XD. Thank you! Yeah, I only kept on going because I wanted to finish the book before the end of the month and I wouldn’t have been able to do so with the paperback alone, but DAYUM! 😀 Maybe you’ll be your usual rebel self and will give it 5 stars? xD

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Hahaha awww sorry the audio book was read by transvestites! A good narrator can totally make or break a book!
    I didn’t know there were pictures in the book, that’s kinda interesting. I’ll put this on my maybe list.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. This book is so hyped that I feel agitated for not having to read it yet but after reading your review I don’t know if I really want to read it. The way you described everything, I wonder why there’s even a movie for it. You are really good with words! Your reviews always makes me smile. I like your humor 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wouldn’t put it on your top priority list ;). But there are plenty of people who love the book(s)! Haha, thank you!! ❤ blushes

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m thinking some people may love it in their reviews so the book could make a sale so that they can earn a commission? I have a feeling your reviews is ones where I don’t have to worry about that 😊

        Liked by 1 person

        • HAHAHA, yes, definitely NOT!! XD I think I handed out three 5 star-ratings in 2016 so far :’). No wonder I’m never getting any commissions! 😉

          Liked by 1 person

  23. Are you sure the pics in the book aren’t pics of your long-lost relatives? 😂😂😂
    I’ve got this book, but I haven’t read it. Too busy with all my lame stuff apparently. (I’m lame and will probably watch the book before I read the movie: I know, I’m a bad person)
    😈👿😈

    Liked by 1 person

    • No, in fact, I might make a post with pictures of THEM in it to show peeps how to write a story around a bunch of weird looking pics :’). Gasp! You’ll watch the book before you read the movie?! Are you going to watch the Chinese version with subtitles?? (assuming you don’t speak Mandarin or any other Chinese dialect)

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, that’s EXACTLY what I had planned! How did you know?
        Yeah, I think I did see that book of family pics…I heard about your new autobiography too! I don’t know why they don’t call it by your name…Frankenstein doesn’t make sense as a title. 😂😉😂😉

        Liked by 1 person

        • Magic! wiggles fingers Bwahaha, it would because it means dead corpse revived and that’s exactly what I feel like during most days :’) :’). So what about yours? I heard your memoir will be hitting the stores soon!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Already out: it’s called American Psycho.
            They made me a man in the book bc I insisted on being anonymous…but I thought I could tell you. 😉
            Just don’t tell anyone!

            Liked by 1 person

            • Great, and now I’m reliving the American Psycho Christian Bale sex scene in my head for the second time this week! With Christian Bale actually being you of course. Oh man! YOUR —->>>>SECRET<<<<—- IS SAFE WITH ME!

              Like

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