Monday, April 22, 2013


Title: The Peculiars
Author: Maureen Doyle McQuerry
Edition: Hardbound
Published: May 1, 2012
Publisher: Harry N. Abrams
Pages: 354
Source: Bought from National Book Store
Category: Steampunk, Paranormal, Romance, Fantasy
Trailer: Here.

This dark and thrilling adventure, with an unforgettable heroine, will captivate fans of steampunk, fantasy, and romance.
On her 18th birthday, Lena Mattacascar decides to search for her father, who disappeared into the northern wilderness of Scree when Lena was young. Scree is inhabited by Peculiars, people whose unusual characteristics make them unacceptable to modern society. Lena wonders if her father is the source of her own extraordinary characteristics and if she, too, is Peculiar. On the train she meets a young librarian, Jimson Quiggley, who is traveling to a town on the edge of Scree to work in the home and library of the inventor Mr. Beasley. The train is stopped by men being chased by the handsome young marshal Thomas Saltre. When Saltre learns who Lena’s father is, he convinces her to spy on Mr. Beasley and the strange folk who disappear into his home, Zephyr House. A daring escape in an aerocopter leads Lena into the wilds of Scree to confront her deepest fears.
The Peculiars is peculiarly interesting.

Hiding herself from people who would criticize her because of her unusual hands and feet, Lena tried to cope and forget the pain. His father left her when she was a child and she grew up being labeled as goblin. In a world where Peculiar people are sent to Scree to mine all their life, on her eighteenth birthday, she decides she has to go and find her father and figure out what she really is.

The Peculiars is a very interesting novel. The steampunk slash paranormal combination never fails to fascinate me no matter how many times I've stumbled upon it. The world this story belongs to is very rich in history and the people are all amazingly different that gave me enough reason to continue devouring this one. I loved the eerie type of world it presented and the plot of it is seriously amusing. However, I found one thing about it unagreeable. The pacing at it becomes too slow that I felt bored at some point. This is a reason I mark a novel less of a star. I don't actually feel good when I read something that when I wait up until two hundred pages and nothing happens, it immediately disappoints me. And some of it are easily predictable.

I liked how Lena and the other Peculiars were described. They are as if magical creatures. But again, nothing was really explained here. Not their origin, how they become almost extinct and why are they being treated that way. Not even a brief history. Lena is very immature too. That might be probably because she wasn't sure how to mingle with people because she grew up almost isolated. She's very easily lured and most of the time, a little hindrance. I loved Mr. Beasley's library and personality. His hospitality and warm hearts towards those in need are very positive traits to lighten everyone's faces. And his unyielding confidence towards his friends is pleasing. I also liked Jimson. His love for science and knowledge is truly passionate and I like how he manage to tell Lena straight to her face that she's being foolish.

I was actually looking forward to reading The Peculiars and thankfully, I liked it. I still enjoyed reading this dark, mysterious and intriguing steampunk novel and I am hoping that if there's a sequel to it, I would find answers by then.
"But do you know who you are? Does anyone really? What makes a decent person? Does being the same as everyone else mean being better than other people or does it just make it easier to look down your nose at them?"

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