Sunday, May 15, 2016

Hollow City: The Second Novel of Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs. Quirk Books, 2014

“Hollow City” picks up with Jacob Portman and the rest of the peculiar children where “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” left off, with the children escaping a submarine full of wights in the ocean, trying to get back to shore and to a safe place without being caught. Between German bombs and wights, their path to safety seems hopeless. Not only do they need to get to safety, they need to get help for Miss Peregrine, who is trapped in her bird form. If they do not get her transformed back to human within a couple of days, her soul will become more and more animal, and she’ll be trapped forever.

Their path takes them to a camp of Romany people, to a menagerie of peculiar animals- including a talking dog with a pipe- who aid them, a circus, St. Paul’s cathedral during a Nazi bombing raid, and into a lot of really unpleasant places. The action never stops; the children are never completely safe. This is a pretty bleak story, but the personalities of the children keep it from being a depressing read.  They are so full of life, bravery, and stoicism that you just keep rooting for them no matter how dark the story gets. And there are intervals of safety and happiness, just enough to keep the children from despair. It’s not just an adventure story; it’s a story of love, growth, and fellowship that is, I think, a stronger story than the first book. And, of course, the high point are the vintage photographs that go with the story. 

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This did not influence my review.  

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