September 3, 1940. Ten peculiar children flee an army of deadly monsters. And only one person can help them—but she’s trapped in the body of a bird. The extraordinary journey that began in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children continues as Jacob Portman and his newfound friends journey to London, the peculiar capital of the world. There, they hope to find a cure for their beloved headmistress, Miss Peregrine. But in this war-torn city, hideous surprises lurk around every corner. And before Jacob can deliver the peculiar children to safety, he must make an important decision about his love for Emma Bloom.
(Story synopsis from amazon.com)
After reading Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs, I immediately had to read his second story in the series, Hollow City.The second book picks up right where the first one left off, and the adventure that Jacob and the other peculiar children are on continues. The difference is that Jacob’s adventure is no longer in the world that he grew up in…instead he’s headed into a war-torn London during the 1940s.
What is great about Hollow City is that the reader begins to discover more about each one of the peculiar children and their own stories. Riggs also takes the reader to various “loops” where other (and even more peculiar) peculiars reside. One of my favorite loops that we visit is the one that holds the peculiar animals. It’s quite fascinating to read the descriptions of these animals and their very own abilities (the sheep and chickens definitely give the children a great advantage later on). It also gives some insight as to the trouble that Miss Peregrine faces now that she is stuck in her bird form. But I must say that my absolute favorite of the peculiar animals is Harrison, the pipe smoking bulldog.
Once again the photographs that accompany the story are absolutely wonderful (as you can see above). While it’s great to create an image created by an author in your head, in this case it was even more interesting to see the pictures that actually inspired some of the events in Hollow City (the pictures used are truly unique and could make an interesting book all on their own). However, there are certain parts of Hollow City that fall to the demise of the second book syndrome. While this novel does go more in-depth with the story that was originally created in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, it is also being used as a lead-up to the third book.
Despite this, I found it fascinating that we see Jacob and the other children travelling through a time that is so full of history and trying to uncover a mystery of their own in trying to turn their headmistress back into her human form. I love the way that Riggs is able to intertwine the uniqueness of the peculiar children into the history of World War II. Riggs once again is able to turn the unbelievable into the believable, even against the backdrop of such an important historical event.
(On a side note, I can’t believe that I have to wait until September to read the third book of the series, Library of Souls! I’m typically one who likes to read a series one book right after the other because I become so involved in the storyline…so if you are like me, you might want to wait before starting the Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series.)