Feb 11, 2014

Mini-Reviews: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children; Fracture Me

Title: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children #1)
Author: Ransom Riggs
Release Date: June 7th 2011
Publisher: Quirk Books
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Bought
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.
Miss Peregrine's caught my eye the moment I spotted it in the bookstore, but it wasn't until Ransom Riggs' book signing last year that I finally picked it up. I didn't know what to expect from this book but because of the weird, creepy photos - I was so creeped out that, at times, I closed my eyes before turning the page, but they really made it easier to immerse into the story - I seriously thought this was a horror story or something. It's not.

Dark yet funny, this book is a slow-building and atmospheric mystery. I really admired how Jacob tried to unravel his grandfather's life so he could move on with his, especially when he first explored the old house in Cairnholm Island because I've watched enough horror movies to know that if I were him, I would have ran away from there, screaming like a banshee.

Until now, though, I'm still not sure why Miss Peregrine's didn't amaze me much. It was highly-original and suspenseful, but for the first half I had a hard time staying focused on it. I also think Jacob and Emma's relationship progressed a bit too fast for my liking. But if you're looking a breath of fresh air in the YA genre, then this is the book you'd want to get your hands on.

MY FAVORITE PART was (this is just a tad bit spoiler-y)
"Millard! Who's the prime minister?"
"Winston Churchill," he said. "Have you gone daft?"
"What's the capital of Burma?"
"Lord, I've no idea. Rangoon."
"Good! When's your birthday?"
"Will you quit shouting and let me bleed in peace!"


Title: Fracture Me (Shatter Me #2.5)
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Release Date: December 17th 2013
Publisher: HarperCollins
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Bought
Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository
In this electrifying sixty-page companion novella to the New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series, discover the fate of the Omega Point rebels as they go up against The Reestablishment. Set during and soon after the final moments of Unravel Me, Fracture Me is told from Adam's perspective.
As Omega Point prepares to launch an all-out assault on The Reestablishment soldiers stationed in Sector 45, Adam's focus couldn't be further from the upcoming battle. He's reeling from his breakup with Juliette, scared for his best friend's life, and as concerned as ever for his brother James's safety. And just as Adam begins to wonder if this life is really for him, the alarms sound. It's time for war.
On the battlefield, it seems like the odds are in their favor—but taking down Warner, Adam's newly discovered half brother, won't be that easy. The Reestablishment can't tolerate a rebellion, and they'll do anything to crush the resistance... including killing everyone Adam has ever cared about.
So. In my efforts to put off reading Ignite Me because I just don't want this series to end yet, I've finally read this. I actually bought a Kindle copy when it was first released but I decided to wait because of all the... negative things I've heard.

Who's laughing now? Us who've been in Team Warner all along, of course! ;D

But first I'll focus on the good. Through Adam's eyes - because let's admit it, Warner is about three steps away from Juliette's level of sanity - we see just how unstable yet kind Juliette is. We also see more of Adam's relationship with James. He's the kid's brother but due to the life they've endured, he's actually more like a father. His top priority is James' safety and well-being, and that's nothing short of admirable. I know some people hate that he chose James over Juliette but think of it this way - if he chose to run after Juliette instead, wouldn't you just hate him more? I know I would.

There's actually only one thing I hated in this novella: Adam's view of Juliette. He thinks he's got her - and everyone else, too - figured out, and he thinks of Juliette like she's a scared, weak, little girl who would cower in a corner at the first sight of gore.
She would've been so much safer if she'd stayed behind. Why does no one ever listen to me?
Because unlike you, Mr. I Have A Practically Useless Special Power, Juliette can punch through walls and start earthquakes. Yeah. Definitely someone I'd want on my side of the battlefield.

There's no denying now that Juliette and Adam have no reason to stay together. She loves Warner, and Adam will never be able to give Juliette enough of himself because of James. He thinks so low and weak of her while Warner has so much faith in her strength and kindness. And when Adam actually sees her being strong, it doesn't make him proud or happy - it scares him.

*waves my Team Warner flag*

MY FAVORITE PART was James asking Adam to tell Juliette not to eat his pudding :)) 



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  2. I haven't read both of these books but everyone seems to be raving about them! I should get to reading them. My friend who read Miss Peregrine's also told me she didn't find it that amazing either, so you're not the only one. I'm glad you enjoyed Fracture Me though, that's one series I should get into soon! Great reviews as always Kazhy! :)

    -Kimi at Geeky Chiquitas

  3. I agree with you that Miss Peregrine's stands out because of its uniqueness and originality. The writing's really good too. I was actually surprised by how much I liked the voice Ransom used with Jacob. I wasn't head over heels with the romance, if you can call it that, but I was very much engaged while reading the book.

    I'm glad you still liked Fracture Me! I read some pretty bad reviews about it was a little turned off, actually. Since I have a copy of Unite Me already though, I'll have to read it some time. Really not that psyched about reading Adam's POV though. Go, Team Warner!


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