Book Review: “The Conference of Birds”

Author Releases Fifth Book in Series


Photo by Morgan Kasel

Author Ransom Riggs released the fifth book of “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” on Jan. 14.

Morgan Kasel, Reporter

After over a year of waiting, author Ransom Riggs released his book “The Conference of Birds” on Jan. 14. This is the fifth book in the “Peculiar Children”series, but it is obviously not the last.

“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” tells the story of teenager Jacob Portman, and the children with strange powers he discovers after his grandfather dies. With monsters called Hollowgast and a way to travel through time, the series is the perfect combination of fantasy and adventure.

After reading the first novel, I immediately fell in love with the series and quickly finished the next two books. The third book, “Library of Souls” had the perfect ending, so I was shocked to find out that Riggs was not done with the world he had created and released a fourth book, and then a fifth.

While I can definitely say that I did not enjoy the fourth book as much as the first three, I was not inclined to give up on the series now, especially since the first book would always be one of my favorites. However, after waiting more than a year for the release of “The Conference of Birds,” I was disappointed.

The fifth novel picks up right after the end of “A Map of Days,” following the escape of Jacob and Noor from the American Peculiar gang. At first I was excited to read about my favorite characters once again, but that excitement was replaced with a predictable, slow plot and the reappearance of problems that had been solved in the first three books.

Along with the plot, I was disappointed by the characters. Yes, the peculiar children were still going on amazing and dangerous adventures, but the character development had already been accomplished in the first three books. This made it hard to connect with the story and especially with the main character.

The main story followed a political issue that had surfaced in the fourth book between the American and European peculiar groups. At times it seemed that the children were unrealistically caught up in the political affairs and this made them appear more as adults than actual kids, which sometimes made the story line hard to follow. The book would have been more enjoyable if the plot had incorporated more of Noor’s adventure and story rather than a political war.

Overall, despite the somewhat slow plot and lack of character development, I still enjoyed “The Conference of the Birds.” The book is still adventurous and fun, just not as entertaining as the first three books in the series. However, if you are looking for a book that is focused solely on the plot and not necessarily the character development and relationships, then this is the perfect book for you.

“The Conference of Birds” is available at Barnes and Noble as well as for order on Amazon