Title: Hollow City
Author: Ransom Riggs
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, photography, Sci-fi, Historical fiction
Thoughts: Just wow… This series just keeps continuing to impress me. The intricate plot line, and character developments, mixed in with vintage photographs, and the overall creepy feeling to this book and its series… I literally could not put this down.
“This second novel begins in 1940, immediately after the first book ended. Having escaped Miss Peregrine’s island by the skin of their teeth, Jacob and his new friends must journey to London, the peculiar capital of the world. Along the way, they encounter new allies, a menagerie of peculiar animals, and other unexpected surprises.” http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23164983-hollow-city
Still following our main character, Jacob Portman, he and his newly found peculiar friends have to travel to London to help their beloved guardian, Miss Peregrine. Hollow City quite literally starts where the first book left off. It was a very engaging story, and every chapter, I would get to the end, meaning to put it down, and then something else exciting would happen, reeling me back in.
The storyline, while it can be confusing in parts, is very imaginative. The descriptions of the monstrous Hollowgast were amazing, and I particularly liked this book because of the setting – London. Having been there myself, I could easily picture the landmarks and streets as they passed them, like St Paul’s cathedral, meaning I got a much better feeling of where the Peculiars were. And then to the actual characters themselves. I feel like they’ve all grown so much since the first novel, and I could actually notice the change in them. I began to forget that it had only been like a week since Jacob met them all, and that this novel only took place in the midst of 48 hours. It was crazy. So many things have happened.
For anyone worried about spookiness or creepiness in this series, I wouldn’t hesitate to pick it up. While the pictures add to the overall eerie plot, it was just the right amount of scary for me. Not enough to give me nightmares or anything, but definitely something where I was on the edge of my seat. And again, the vintage looking photos Ransom Riggs has used so effectively, brings this story to life. While there were a few sad ones near the beginning that were a bit hard to look at, they most definitely helped get across the message that he wanted to convey with them, and I really, really love the way that he weaves them into the story so smoothly that sometimes you don’t even notice there’s been a break in words, and suddenly you have the clearest image in your mind of what you’ve just read. I’ve never read any other books that use this method, and I really find it effective.
And now for the big finish!! What a twist! I was fooled the entire way through the book, believing they would get some sort of resolution when… BOOM – twist ending. I did not see it coming at all. And it left me feeling excited for the next book, Library of Souls. Lucky I’ve already got it at home…
I think the only reason why this book could be any better than Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, is that little extra bit of action. This entire book is full to the brim with it, every chapter something new and exciting happening. While in the first book, there was the few introductory paragraphs, setting the scene and characters, and then a few chapters here and there, Hollow City was an explosive book, that kept me engaged the whole time.
“I liked this idea: that peculiarness wasn’t a deficiency, but an abundance; that it wasn’t we who lacked something normals had, but they who lacked peculiarness. That we were more, not less.”
― Ransom Riggs, Hollow City
Why should read it? Obviously, if you’ve read the first one, definitely go on reading the rest of the series… It’s good. And for anyone who is worried it isn’t their thing, or too creepy, don’t worry. I had the exact same thoughts as I picked the first book up for the first time, and am very, very glad I did. This is one of those books that, if it were known, would be the next big thing.
Book in a word: Engaging