Trigger Warnings: Asphyxia; Death of a grandfather (recounted); Eyeball trauma; Gun violence; Physical injuries; Recreational drug use; Smoking
The Conference of the Birds is the fifth, and penultimate, installment in Ransom Riggs’ highly acclaimed series: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and it has made me even more excited to read The Desolations of Devil’s Acre!
The first thing that stood out to me in this book was the incredibly fast-moving plot. Having read all the books in this series, I knew that this would happen, but nothing could prepare me for the feeling of speeding through the book, whilst still noting every detail around the quest to save peculiardom. This really helped to bring the story to life, as I was imagining the story in my head, as if I was a part of it (and given the graphic descriptions and Hollowgasts, I’m thankful that I’m experiencing it through a book, and not in real life)!
From the very first book in this series, I have loved each of the characters, as they are all so unique, and the story could not be the same with the absence of any one of them. This was heightened in The Conference of the Birds, as I felt increasingly protective of each of them, especially when they were putting themselves in danger for the sake of peculiardom. Therefore, the tension was really enhanced, as I wanted the ‘children’ to complete their tasks, but I also wanted them to all stay safe, so that I could read more about their stories in The Desolations of Devil’s Acre. This immediate warmth towards characters is something that I have not seen in any other books, especially on such a large scale. The characters and their family sense/nature really is what makes this series stand out so much.
I think it would be criminal to review The Conference of the Birds without mentioning the signature photos. I loved how these were black-and-white again, as this restated the eeriness that the colour photos in A Map of Days was missing. Each photo shaped the story, and each time that a picture of a new character was introduced, I remembered what they looked like so that they could be added into my internal imagining of the story. I think it would be impossible to choose a favourite photo, as they’re all so eerie and creepy, which was so important for pushing forward the narrative and tension.
The epilogue, for me, was the perfect ending to The Conference of the Birds. The final sentence sent shivers down my spine, as I could only guess who ‘he’ was. If I’d had The Desolations of Devil’s Acre to hand, I would have started it immediately because my mind was racing with who ‘he’ could be. I do have one big guess, however I won’t say it here so that I don’t spoil this book for those that haven’t read it.
Overall, I recommend this series and book to any fantasy and horror fans, as well as fans of the series as a whole.
Have you read The Conference of the Birds? Have you read any other books in the Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children series? Let me know in the comments!
Thank you for reading this post.