(click the cover to see the Goodreads page on the book)
Ok, I'll admit, every time I read the title, I kept thinking of Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends. But comparison wise, its not that far off. This book is told through the eyes of Jacob, who grew up hearing fantastic tales of his grandfather about a home he stayed at after he fled the Nazis and before joining the army. As most kids do, Jacob reached an age where he decided that the tales and pictures of his grandfather's childhood friends weren't real. After his grandfather's untimely death, Jacob and his father visit the island in Wales where the home was in attempts to find some closure. The story is told through accompanying vintage photographs, usually depicting the grandfather's peculiar friends.
I loved this novel. I think the photographs added so much to the story, and it rather reminds me of going through my grandparents' pictures and them breaking off into some story or other. I had heard other people who thought the book was creepy, but I never had that feeling (though I suspect it takes a lot to weird me out. most "scary" movies tend to be more boring or stupid in my book). The subject matter (period before The Blitz, persecution) could get to be a little intense for some readers, given that it is marketed as a young adult novel, but I thought it balanced out with the lighter moments of the book. Now I got this as a library e-book, and the pictures were about the size of the photographs of the time on my Nook Color, but I heard some people express that they had difficulty seeing them on their readers, so if you don't have a tablet or larger size reader, you might consider checking out a physical copy if you are borrowing it from the library. ★★★★★