Review: The Desolations of Devil’s Acre by Ransom Riggs

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The last thing Jacob Portman saw before the world went dark was a terrible, familiar face.
Suddenly, he and Noor are back in the place where everything began – his grandfather’s house. Jacob doesn’t know how they escaped from V’s loop to find themselves in Florida. But he does know one thing for certain: Caul has returned.
After a narrow getaway from a blood-thirsty hollow, Jacob and Noor reunite with Miss Peregrine and the peculiar children in Devil’s Acre. The Acre is being plagued by desolations – weather fronts of ash and blood and bone – a terrible portent of Caul’s amassing army.
Risen from the Library of Souls and more powerful than ever, Caul and his apocalyptic agenda seem unstoppable. Only one hope remains – deliver Noor to the meeting place of the seven prophesied ones. If they can decipher its secret location. 

So it’s been 7 years since I read the first Miss Peregrine’s book, and I finally finished the series! Thank you to the audiobook versions of the last two books in the series for helping me finally pick them up after owning them since release – I really enjoyed listening to these and it definitely helped with the daunting size of The Desolations of Devil’s Acre.

After following these characters for 6 books, it was definitely bittersweet to see them go, but I’m also ready to move on at the same time.

In the end, our real home had always been one another. 

Maybe it’s just me – but it honestly felt like Ransom Riggs crammed so much plot into this one book, that it’s almost on par with the plot of the first 3 books all together. I was honestly astounded by how much he managed to fit into this last instalment in the series, as I was definitely expecting a shorter wrap-up with not quite as much at stake, but this one definitely went out with a bang.

Although the plot packed a lot in and was quite action packed, it did also feel pretty predictable after 5 of these books. I never felt particularly worried for the characters or on edge, which did let me down. There was just such a lack of tension there for me.

My favourite part of the book was definitely the group of friends, and I couldn’t help but enjoy the ending. Seeing them band together throughout this book and witnessing their banter and the way they treat one another did warm my heart.

And a real home was all I’d ever wanted.

Although I enjoyed this one and the series as a whole, I sadly felt like there wasn’t enough tension to keep me hooked, feeling a bit predictable and quite long!

★★★
3 out of 5 stars

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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Review: The Conference of the Birds (#5) by Ransom Riggs

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With his dying words, H—Jacob Portman’s final connection to his grandfather Abe’s secret life— entrusts Jacob with a mission: Deliver newly con­tacted peculiar Noor Pradesh to an operative known only as V. Noor is being hunted. She is the subject of an ancient prophecy, one that foretells a looming apocalypse. Save Noor—Save the future of all peculiardom.
With only a few bewildering clues to follow, Jacob must figure out how to find V, the most enigmatic, and most powerful, of Abe’s former associates. But V is in hiding and she never, ever, wants to be found.
With enemies behind him and the unknown ahead, Jacob Portman’s story continues as he takes a brave leap forward into The Conference of the Birds. 

Let me just start by saying I see these six books as two separate trilogies. It’s been absolutely years since I read (and really liked!) the first three in the series, and going back to A Map of Days felt a little unnecessary. I was happy with how the series had ended, and I didn’t feel like we needed more. But I did also enjoy reading the series, and found myself wanting to know what would happen when the gang toured America.

It’s been a while since I read A Map of Days, and although I didn’t feel like I needed in-depth knowledge of the first 3threebooks, I did want to refresh myself on the fourth book. I used this recap guide by Penguin Teen and watched the video linked at the bottom of the same post, and I must say that it allowed me to dive straight into the fifth book without any problem!

There’s an art to fleeing casually. 

I chose to listen to the audiobook of this one, and I did quite enjoy it, even though I feel like you miss some of the ambience by not being able to view the pictures interspersed throughout the story at the same time as reading. I did make sure to go back and flick through my physical version, but it’s not quite the same. I thought the narration was really good, but it did make me realise how stereotypically British these characters are. I think part of this is because some of the characters are from the 1940s, and they do use some very British turns of phrase that may have been more current to the time. It didn’t annoy me too much, but it could have easily got on my nerves a little!

Although this book definitely didn’t blow me away, I did still enjoy it, and I remember feeling the same about A Map of Days. These books aren’t amazing, but they’re fun adventure stories with characters I will always root for, so I made sure to enjoy the book for what it was.

It’s not easy, running from something that might kill you while not attracting stares.

Mostly due to the fact I read the audiobook, I actually managed to read this in a day. It was just so easy to listen to and I had a day of doing mindless cleaning tasks at work, which allowed me to read most of the book. I sped through it and I found the story very entertaining, they just don’t feel super unique at this point.

★★★★
3.5 out of 5 stars

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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Stacking the Shelves #38

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga where we share books we’ve bought or received this week. Find out more and join in here!

I don’t have a massive amount of books on preorder right now, but this was one of them. Although I haven’t actually read the 5th book in the Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children yet, I definitely want to finally finish this series! I enjoyed the original trilogy a lot and I liked A Map of Days, so I am looking forward to carrying on with this story. As far as I’m aware, this is actually going to be the last Miss Peregrine’s book, but we shall see!

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What have you bought this week?

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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