Book Review: : Library Of Souls (Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children # 3) By Ransom Riggs (Quirk Books)

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Spoiler Alert! If you haven’t read the first two books in the series, you may want to read those before continuing as there are major spoilers within.

It’s been quite the journey for Jacob Portman and his peculiar friends, just as he was settling in to life as a peculiar in Miss Peregrine’s loop, everything was ripped away and out hero found himself on a dangerous trip across wartime Britain in Hollow City on a quest to find Miss Peregrine, which ended in disaster, with most of the peculiars captured by Caul, Miss Peregrine’s evil brother.

In Library Of Souls, Jacob and Emma must enter a dangerous loop in order to find their friends and ymbrynes who have been taken by the villainous Wights. Jacob is still coming to terms with the discovery that he has the ability to control hollowgasts and the effect having such a connection with these monsters has on him (they did after all, kill his grandfather.)

The loop we are introduced to this time is very different to the others we have encountered before. It’s a hellish place, ruled by wights where peculiars are enslaved and their essence harvested as a drug. Jacob discovers that Caul is seeking The Library Of Souls, where past peculiar’s souls are kept, which also gives access to their abilities, giving ultimate power to whoever finds it.

While Riggs’ world building has been impressive so far, he has certainly upped his game for this final outing, providing an eloquently detailed landscape to

Library Of Souls is a much more intense affair than the first two books, and is all the better for it. While there was plenty of action in Hollow City, it did feel at times as if the narrative was lagging slightly. This is certainly not the case with this final part. This feels like a much bigger story, with much more at stake. There is a terrific sense of urgency throughout as our desperate heroes stumble their way across this terrifying environment and the pace gathers momentum steadily until it reaches rollercoaster proportions at the spectacular finale.

While Riggs’ world building has been impressive so far, he has certainly upped his game for this final outing, providing an eloquently detailed landscape populated by many new characters, some heroic and sympathetic to Jacob and Emma’s cause, some more ambiguous, driven by motives that are not quite clear until later in the story, but each is memorable and well-crafted, and bring an interesting dynamic to the plot as it unfolds.

As with Hollow City, the “found” photographs are mostly used to illustrate certain characters and while still a nice touch, I didn’t find them as atmospheric or as necessary as I did with the original book. This doesn’t detract from the reading experience in the slightest though.

I think Library Of Souls is probably my favourite of the three. It’s on a much more epic scale than it’s predecessors and is given the unenviable task of finishing a well-loved series, and thankfully it does so on all counts. In particular, Riggs absolutely nails the ending, bringing a highly enjoyable trilogy to a very satisfying end.

 

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