Published by Quirk Books
The sequel to Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children, this again is a novel that combines a fantasy that works quite well into how children may have perceived the second World War, the lives of what were once referred to as 'freaks' in a carnival, the lives of children who have become orphaned through whatever means, and more. Ransom Riggs has taken a group of antique photos he has found throughout several years and extracted a story from the mix. Some are perfectly normal photos of the past century, some are obviously from various carnivals, all have become a story. Not the story of the photos, but a strange and compelling story gleaned via Ransom's own imagination of what they imply, and in some cases I suspect stories related through research.
The author has created a hidden world in his books. Are the photos creating the story? Or is the story the basis of the search for the photos? I think in this second book it is quite obvious that the photos inspire the story, perhaps more so than the first book. Regardless, it is out of the collection and the search that the story has been born. The photos are real. In fact, one I recognize because I once collected old postcards and in the process happened to see it. Personally, I think this is a wonderful method of creation. The imagination flows from each photo into a complete, at times war-torn, world. A complete life story has come from each personal photo, though some are pretty far-fetched, it is a fantasy after all. The monsters the 'peculiar' children are so terrified of appear to almost be an allegory of the monsters of war. Considering most of the story in their hidden time loop is in 1940, this makes sense. But it is also a love story, a group of individual children that are different becoming strong in their individualities, especially in their search for help for their injured guardian, Miss Peregrine. Regardless, this unique method has produced interesting concepts in both books and may just change the way 'different' people are viewed. Surprising twist at the end. Middle grade and up.
My review of "Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children can be found here.