Tag Archives: Hollow City

‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’ Movie

13 Apr

Movie Poster via To Hollywood and Beyond Wiki

After FINALLY finishing Library of Souls, my husband and I figured it was time to pick up the movie based on this series, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. I actually watched it a few days before finishing the book and I was afraid I’d ruined the book for myself. They were so different it didn’t make a lick of difference.

Things I Thought Were Awesome

Hollows. Really, this is about it. I was excited to hear Burton was doing this film, but I think this was his only add to it visually. The book was already so visual that there wasn’t much more to do. The Hollows were a little reminiscent of Jack Skellington so it even gave the impression he was copying his previous work. Regardless, they worked well. Except for the CG error when their pinstripes showed up while covered with cotton candy. That was dumb.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

Fiona talking. I didn’t understand why her character was silent in the books. Having her talking and walking around was fine with me. She was completely different from what I imagined and much younger, but oh well. And she didn’t have an adorable love with Hugh but again, I could live without it.

Shortening the series to one movie. If you’ve read my reviews, you know I thought the series was meandering and far too long. This shortening was awesome. The ending was also much more satisfying than the end of the book series.

Switching Emma and Olive’s powers. Because honestly, Olive’s power was pretty useless and Emma is pretty useless so it didn’t really matter.

Olive being older. With her having the fire power, I can see why it’s easier to portray her as older. A 6-year-old with fire hands would be a bit terrifying.

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

Number of Hollows and Wights. In the books, there were hundreds and that’s why they were scary, they were all over the world. The movie portrayed it as just a small number, about 10 or so, and a few of them were wights already. That’s a lot less scary and I felt like I wouldn’t be as terrified of something where there are so few and some of them aren’t invisible anymore. Especially watching this after reading the third one, the numbers seemed way off.

Emma and Jacob’s creepy relationship. I mean, it was still there, but it wasn’t clear that Emma and Jacob’s grandfather had been together. Which gave it an ‘ick’ factor that wasn’t brought through in the film. Their relationship was really flat, anyway. She wasn’t appealing enough (in my opinion) to give up life for and there was no time for them to develop a relationship that would attract him at all.

Cover Image via Goodreads.com

Things That Changed Too Much

Miss Peregrine being young. Ugh. This was too much for me. Miss Peregrine was an older woman in my head and would have been a better role for Judy Dench where she didn’t get killed off right away. Young Miss Peregrine was wrong.

Hollow v. Skeleton Battle. The most epic battle of the whole movie is completely CG and takes place in front of a bunch of Normals? Really? This is so off from the series that it was annoying. And it kept all of the characters out of the climactic battle. That’s poor pacing.

Emma’s air power. Where did this come from? And how did it work? She could make the room of an underwater ship air-tight? And if she can blow enough air to raise a cruise ship from the ocean floor, why can’t she produce enough air to hold off a wight for a decent amount of time? I just don’t get it.

Changing the past. So Jacob and his friends are able to change the past enough that Abe doesn’t die? That was odd to me. Plus, the movie left Jacob abandoned in January 2016 London and he would somehow have to make his way back to Florida and it would see there would be two of him once he got there. So how did that all play out?

I heard this movie didn’t do well in theaters and I can see why. It’s riddled with plot holes and doesn’t seem to have attempted to capture the book fans. Reader, have you see the Miss Peregrine movie? What did you think?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Book Review: Hollow City by Ransom Riggs (2/5)

27 Jul

I was a little underwhelmed with the first book in this series, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, which I reviewed last year. But the book left off on such a cliffhanger that I decided I would eventually continue the series. Obviously I was in no rush. My husband and I had a nine-hour drive on our camping vacation so we decided to knock this one out. I’m left with much the same feeling.

Cover image via Goodreads.com

Cover image via Goodreads.com

Hollow City by Ransom Riggs

Summary from Goodreads:

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.

This lackluster summary is appropriate for this book, which has a serious case of ‘Second Book Syndrome.’ The first book introduced us to a ton of unusual characters and a cool underground world where the second one gave us a lot of throw-away characters and introduced too many new main characters. The idea of the first book being a story to string together the odd photographs was great, but the new pictures have entirely different people in them and seemed to necessitate adding another large number of characters to the second book. I didn’t find that necessary and it was a bit overwhelming. I was also highly disappointed in the ending. I thought it rendered the rest of the book pointless. I put the final one on my TBR, but at this point it feels like morbid curiosity than eagerness.

I found the relationship between Emma and Jacob really forced and disturbing. It diminished Emma as a character for me, which is unfortunate because she’s such a main presence in the book. For someone who seemed to be pining after Abe in the first book, she’s very quick to crush on the guy’s grandson. Plus, isn’t that creepy? I think it’s really creepy. The fact that it didn’t bother Jacob either got to me. He acted too much like a love-struck puppy for me and it seemed at odds with his authoritative leadership among the Peculiars. It was all too inconsistent for me.

Bronwyn became a very stand-out character for me in this book. I don’t remember her playing such a big role in the first novel, probably because she was too busy taking care of Victor. In this book, she takes care of everyone else. I thought it was a good development of her role.

I remember the rebellious feelings Jacob has. I remember how that felt when I was sixteen. I thought my parents were wrong about everything and were only trying to control me. But I realized they were right. I was better off staying away from dangerous people and being home rather than God-knows-where. If Jacob had just stayed put, would all of this have happened? Probably not. I understand why Jacob pushed against his parents, but I wish he’d take a little credit for what’s happened.

Ransom Riggs Image courtesy of Wikipedia

Ransom Riggs
Image courtesy of Wikipedia

I liked the menagerie. I thought those characters, though only two talked, were well-developed and I saw a purpose to having gone there and learning what they did. I’m glad Addison came back in the end because I think he could be a really good character to have in the final book.

The ending ruined the whole book for me. I’m going to talk about it now so skip to the end if you haven’t read this and don’t want to know what happens. Finding out that the bird wasn’t Miss Peregrine all along makes their whole journey to save her pointless. Without it, they would be lost and vulnerable on an island. Now they’re lost and vulnerable in London and we have a lot of other characters involved. I feel like nothing important happened in the book. There wasn’t a lot of character development to justify a circular plot. It makes me want to give up on the series, but I need to know that something substantial happens in the final book at the same time. So conflicted.

The audiobook I listened to was narrated by Kirby Heyborne. He is not the same person who narrated the first book in the series and I noticed the difference as soon as we started it. Heyborne did a fine job, don’t get me wrong, but I think I prefer the previous narrator. Though I did enjoy the droll sarcasm of Jacob in Heyborne’s voice. I was getting a bit sick of the accents by  the end because I was thinking that if I read the book, I wouldn’t have to deal with them. It was a bit cumbersome but helped keep the characters apart in my head.

The end of the book reminded me a lot of the end of Catching Fire in the Hunger Games series. There’s a war starting and even teenagers have to decide if they should stand and fight. In reality, it is teenagers who have to make this decision as young as eighteen (seventeen if you’re a wizard). Knowing what’s right and what’s worth fighting for is important and unfortunately for Jacob, it’s come down to life or death to push the issue for him.

Writer’s Takeaway: Characters, characters, and more characters! Way too many for me. I know Riggs likes using the vintage pictures to bring characters into his books, but I think it caused him to introduce too many. Not every picture needed to turn into a new peculiar in this world. It was overwhelming. I was given the general rule that if you can take a character out, to do it. Too many characters confuse the reader.

Not as engaging as the first but still well written. Two out of Five stars.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Related Posts:
Hollow City by Ransom Riggs | Gerrytology
Hollow City – Ransom Riggs | bellsiebooks
BOOK: Hollow City (Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children Book 2) by Ransom Riggs (2014) | Senceless Pie
Book Review: Hollow City (Miss Peregrine Book #2) by Ransom Rigs | Eamo The Geek

WWW Wednesday, 8-July-2015

8 Jul

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


MockingjayCurrently reading:  Stil a hold on Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. Wait and see.
I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai is going pretty well. With my big trip over the weekend, I didn’t get a lot of ereading time on my phone. Not much of a need for it in the middle of the woods. Hopefully this can pick up soon.
I’m really enjoying Hotel at the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford. Henry is a really great character and I’m enjoying his story mixed between flashbacks and the 1980s.
Two new audiobooks this week. The first is Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins which is a re-read for me. I wanted a refresher of the story before I see the film. I’m curious how much had to change because of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death and how accurate they could keep the story.
The second new audiobook is The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer. I don’t remember how this fell onto my radar but I think it might have been a recommendation? We’ll have to see how it is because I’ve only just begun. With my shorter commute to my new job, I’m not sure how fast I’ll get through this 22 disk audio.

HollowRecently finished: Two finished! Both audio. Harry, a History by Melissa Anelli was really good and it reminded me of all the awesomeness that is Harry Potter and being a Potterhead while the books were being released. Great read.
My husband and I flew through the audio for Hollow City by Ransom Riggs. I didn’t like this one as much as the first. I’ll have to write the review to put my thoughts together.

WidowReading Next: No changes to my plans. It will be a physical book that I read next. Either A Widow for One Year by John Irving or Every Man for Himself by Beryl Bainbridge. Depends on when I get a copy of ‘Widow’ from my work book club girls. Sounds like I might get it soon!


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 1-July-2015

1 Jul

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


MalalaCurrently reading:  No progress on Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. Hoping the hold comes through soon!
My audiobook is Harry, a History by Melissa Anelli and it’s going well. I find myself insanely jealous of Anelli’s life every time I open it up.
I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai is going pretty well. I wish there was more about her. Right now it seems like a history lesson about her region of Pakistan. I know it’s setting up the political situation that led to her getting shot, but it’s still not as interesting as I was hoping for.
I started Hotel at the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford earlier this week. Our book club has chosen it as our selection to discuss in July. No shame to say this was my recommendation! I hope it’s a good one, I’ve heard good things.
I technically haven’t started it by the time this post goes up, but my husband and I are leaving for a trip to the Smokey Mountains and of course we had to have an audiobook to supplement the nine-hour trip (each way!). We choose Hollow City by Ransom Riggs, the sequel to Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children which we listened to last year. I hope it’s good!

BitesRecently finished: I fought my way through Wuthering Bites by Sarah Gray. It’s not that the book’s bad, but that I wanted to finish it by Monday. Wuthering Heights isn’t a book you rush through and this one is the say way. I kept wondering how much longer this was because of the vampire plotline.

And two book reviews! The first was for La sombra del viento (The Shadow of the Wind) by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. It feels good to have this one behind me because it was a long journey, but wrong because I enjoyed it so much.
The other is On the Okey Dokey Trail by I. Leigh Private. I enjoyed it but thought it lacked a little depth. Check out the reviews to know more!

ManforHimselfReading Next: There are two possibilities. The first is that my work book club gets me a copy of A Widow for One Year by John Irving before I finish Hotel.
If that doesn’t happen, I’m going to continue my fight to finish the When Are You Reading? Challenge. Next up is Every Man for Himself by Beryl Bainbridge. I was introduced to Bainbridge a few years ago when I read The Girl in the Polka Dot Dress for my book club. The author has a really cool style. I saw that she had a book about my favorite event in history, the sinking of the Titanic. I was lucky enough to find it at a used bookstore in Ann Arbor, MI and I’ve been waiting for a reason to read it ever since. So pumped!


As I’ve said, I’m in a car on my way to Tennessee so please forgive me if responses are delayed. It all depends on how good the audiobooks are and how good the phone reception is!

Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!