Title: Library of Souls
Author: Ransom Riggs
Series: Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children, #3
Publisher: Quirk Books
Release Date: September 22nd 2015
The adventures that began with Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and continued with Hollow City comes to a thrilling conclusion with Library of Souls.
As the story opens, sixteen-year-old Jacob discovers a powerful new ability, and soon he’s diving through history to rescue his peculiar companions from a heavily guarded fortress. Accompanying Jacob on his journey are Emma Bloom, a girl with fire at her fingertips, and Addison MacHenry, a dog with a nose for sniffing out lost children.
They’ll travel from modern-day London to the labyrinthine alleys of Devil’s Acre, the most wretched slum in all of Victorian England. It’s a place where the fate of peculiar children everywhere will be decided once and for all.
Like its predecessors, Library of Souls blends thrilling fantasy with never-before-published vintage photography.
– Blurb courtesy of goodreads.com
This review may contain spoilers for previous book(s) in the series.
My Thoughts On…
After discovering that the bird they carried from Wales to London was no Miss Peregrine but her brother, Caul, Jacob and Emma find themselves alone in modern day London. Ambushed by the wrights they watched as their friends were taken away, the only reason they managed to escape was because of Addison, the talking boxer dog, who grabbed them in the confusion. However before they can follow their friends they need to escape from the wrights who are still tracking them down.
When the trail comes to an end Jacob, Emma and Addison find themselves at the Thames, and with no other option they follow the wrights path to Devil’s Acre, the darkest and direst of the time loops, a slum where peculiars go when they want to disappear and never return.
With no clue who they can trust and what streets are safe Emma and Jacob have to rely on the man who brought them through the loop in the first place, but they remain unsure if they can trust someone who is only helping them for money, not out of concern for the safety of his fellow peculiars. The most important thing is to save their friends before it is too late but Jacob and Emma have no clue where to start and no clue how to get into the wrights fort, all their first attempt at investigating does is lose them Addison.
Jacob and Emma see the darkest of the dark; peculiars addicted to ambrosia, peculiars who sell their powers to anyone with money, and peculiars who have been enslaved and are numb to the whole world. Soon they manage to find someone they think they can trust but his help comes with a price they may be unable to pay and, when it comes down to it, the hardest task is still ahead of them; break into the wrights tower and save their friends with no plan other than dumb luck.
Jacob says himself in this book that he feels like two different people; Old and New Jacob. New Jacob is brave, willing to run headfirst into danger if it means saving his new family, but deep down he’s still very much Old Jacob who is scared, lost and sometimes craves the safety of his modern day life in Florida with his parents. Most of what is guiding him is the debt he feels he owns to Miss Peregrine. She saved his grandfather and allowed him the opportunity to grow up and have children and grandchildren, resulting in Jacob being born. Now Jacob is willing to do anything he can to pay her back.
His powers have been developing through this trilogy and Library of Souls Jacob really comes into his own regarding his peculiarity . It’s a very steep learning curve he has to master, but at this point it’s either succeed the very first time or die trying.
With most of the peculiars now locked away it’s down to Emma and Jacob to save the day. Even in the previous two books Emma has always been someone the other peculiars have looked up to, someone they look to for guidance, but Emma has always has Miss Peregrine to look to for guidance and now that’s been taken away. When it comes down to it Emma has her doubts, her hopes and her fears but she pushes them down knowing they will be no use to her, only hinder her journey.
We met a lot of new characters in this book, and some more peculiars as well. There was new depths given to Miss Peregrine’s character and her past with her brothers, and we saw a much more sinister side to the peculiars that hadn’t really been explored in either of the previous books. It was very interesting seeing the darkness that can blight the peculiar world, it added a new depth to the people who, so far, have seemed a little apart from humanity. The peculiars too have their faults and their shades of grey when it comes to morality.
One of the things I loved about this trilogy is how it seems to sets up what aspect of the peculiar world it will focus on in the previous book. We learnt a little about time loops in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and they were the main focus in the second book as Jacob and is friends journey from loop to loop in order to read London. We then briefly heard about punishment loops in Hollow City and this is where most of this book was set. Devil’s Acre is a place where peculiars can flee to when they’re running from the law. It’s dark, desolate and depressing; the people there have lost all hope and most of the peculiars are addicts willing to do anything for their next fix. It makes it the perfect place for the wrights to set up their grand plan. All throughout this series there have been myths and legends of the peculiars that have basis in reality, and this book is no exception, this time the Library of Souls become more than just a story for Jacob and Emma.
I wanted to love this book but I felt the pacing of the plot was a little off. The first half set up everything for the main events to fall into place, but when it came to the conclusion it felt like there wasn’t enough room left so it was just crammed in. The ending felt rushed and a little out of place. Overall I still enjoyed this book but Hollow City remains my favourite of the trilogy.
What did you think of Library of Souls? Was it a favourite of yours or could you just not get into the story? Let me know.