Before before I jump into that story, let me tell you another one.
A few months ago, while road tripping down to North Carolina with two of my closest friends, I had the opportunity to listen to the audio version of Ransom Riggs’ debut YA novel Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children. I like audiobooks, but I wasn’t one hundred percent certain that this book would work on audio because of all those pictures. But my friend assured me that the audio version was audio.
As I listened, my mind conjured up images of Jacob, of his beloved grandfather, of the peculiar children I knew were lurking in the pages ahead. But what my mind hadn’t imagined was this: the start of the audio book moved at a sluggish pace. Still my one friend assured me it would pick up, and that I would end up falling head over heels in love with Miss Peregrine and all of her peculiar children.
As we listened to the detail and the not so great accents I started to get into the story, even though in my heart of hearts I felt this was a story that I much rather read – physically read, with the hardcover book in my hands. Because my one friend was not enjoying it, we decided to leave it for another time, another trip that we’d be taking just a few weeks after this one.
Let’s fast forward to that trip. Again, a friend and I loaded into my car and started our journey to South Carolina, with the sole intentions of going to YallFest. As we drove along I-95 we decided it was time I revisited Miss Peregrine. And this time I intended on finishing it.
And finish it we did.
Words can’t express just how freaking much I loved Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children. The writing was stellar. The plot was creep-tastic in the best way possible, and the pictures were simply mesmerizing.
So it was a good thing that I was on my way to YallFest, because then I’d have my chance to meet Ransom Riggs and tell him how very much I loved his book.
Well, that didn’t happen. Unfortunately, he had a bad case of food poisoning, and instead of meeting him, I received a signed book plate – which was awesome, but just not the same.
So, with the approach of Hollow City, I figured he’d be coming around sometime soon. And come around he did!
This past Sunday (January 26th) Ransom Riggs visited the Powerhouse Arena in Brooklyn – which I really, really liked and thought it was a great venue for such an event – for the Brooklyn launch of Hollow City. To say this was a great event is a blatant understatement.
This book event was unlike any other book event I have ever attended. And trust me, I’ve been to a lot. He didn’t just talk about his new book, he didn’t simply host a question and answer session. Instead, attendees had the chance to catch a glimpse into his photo collection, we had the chance to watch a some short documentaries on urban exploration and photo collecting. Attendees had the chance to get the know the person who created the books, and that was really cool.
Of course he talked all about both Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children and his latest title Hollow City. Of course he answered question after question. And of course he signed books and snapped pictures.
But unlike most of those other events I’ve attended in the past, I left this one feeling a bit different. It left me feeling like I wanted to get out there and explore the world – not just the hidden gems and crumbling buildings, but the whole wide world. It left me feeling like I wanted to discover my own creepy photos – scouring flea markets, antique stores, and thrift shops.
But above all things I left there feeling okay with the fact that like Ransom Riggs, I too haven’t read the whole Harry Potter series! Ha Ha
In short, it was a great event. If you haven’t picked up Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, you’re certainly missing out!