Let me explain.
When I first saw this book at my local Chapters, I thought it was creepy and after looking through the pages a bit and reading like half the summary, this is what I concluded. MPHFPC is probably about this kid who goes to an abandoned orphanage and discovers letters or a book of pictures which documents the torture of these children with peculiar abilities. And y'know, he investigates. It sounded really cool in my head.
Which is why, once I was offered to review the newly released paperback version of this novel I said YEEs!>!?!???. The many acclamations by John Green also helped, because...y'know. John Green.
So thinking I knew what this book was about, I began my journey five minutes after finishing Project Cain and was ready to be creeped out. Man, was I wrong about pretty much...everything.
So what's this book really about?
After an unfortunate event, Jacob feels its necessary to visit a remote island near Wales where he discovers the abandoned ruins of MPHFPC.
So maybe it wasn't completely my fault, the summary offered by the publisher is slightly misleading. To set you straight, there are mentions of time travel, secret societies and yes, romance *sigh*. Three years ago, this would have probably been the Hunger Games of my life. Because although the story is a bit childish, make no mistake: the writing is excellent, the story is creative, and the inclusion of pictures makes the novel that much more magical. THIS IS A GREAT BOOK. It is not nearly as disturbing or creepy as you'd think but it is exceptional. Perhaps it isn't the type of book I can relate to at this time of my life which is probably why I felt so disconnected. Not to say that John Green was wrong, he just wasn't speaking to me.
BUT, I do admit that the romance in the book did indeed creep me out, and felt slightly unnecessary.
I suppose it's all to say that, I am not the target audience for MPHFPC, but I can appreciate what it has to offer: genius, creativity, exceptional writing, and a lovely series for a young audience.
Pick it up, and see what you think of it.