Early Review--Lost Boy by Christina Henry

From the national bestselling author of Alice comes a familiar story with a dark hook—a tale about Peter Pan and the friend who became his nemesis, a nemesis who may not be the blackhearted villain Peter says he is…

There is one version of my story that everyone knows. And then there is the truth. This is how it happened. How I went from being Peter Pan’s first—and favorite—lost boy to his greatest enemy.

Peter brought me to his island because there were no rules and no grownups to make us mind. He brought boys from the Other Place to join in the fun, but Peter's idea of fun is sharper than a pirate’s sword. Because it’s never been all fun and games on the island. Our neighbors are pirates and monsters. Our toys are knife and stick and rock—the kinds of playthings that bite.

Peter promised we would all be young and happy forever.


Peter lies.


I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest and voluntary review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

I’ve always loved fairy tales, fairy tales in their original format and even Disney-ified! Retellings were soon added to that list when I discovered them some years ago, and after enjoying Christina Henry’s twist on Alice in Wonderland, I was ecstatic to learn she had a Peter Pan retelling, once more, a Captain Hook origin story! For how is it that we have an adult pirate in a land filled with children who never grow up? It was always a mystery to me as a kid, and now we have an answer with Lost Boy: The True Story of Captain Hook.

Also to note, it’s best to think of the fairy tale and not the Disney movie when it comes to retellings. While I love Disney and the things that they do, they themselves are simply making retellings of fairy tales! Fairy tales were even meant for adults too, in the beginning, any Grimm fairy tale can pretty much confirm it! I’m wondering if that’s where we get the word “grim” from now that I think on it! Lol!

So here we follow the story of a young boy named Jamie. He’s lived with Peter for ages now. Peter took him away from a cold life in the Other Place and brought him to his island so that they can always have fun and play games together. And then eventually, Peter started bringing more boys over, because of course, more boys means more fun! Soon Jamie took to caring for the boys that Peter brought over. He would look after them and help them with injuries, make sure they ate. He cared for them. Then Peter brought over a very young boy, despite Jamie’s protests that he was too young for the island life. Peter thought he was cute and would be fun. For Peter is never wrong and always gets what he wants. This boy, Charlie, was rather young and he took more of a liking to Jamie since Jamie cared for him. Charlie is about five years old whereas the other boys are closer to Peter’s eleven years.

Soon we learn that life on the island—for it’s not called Neverland in this version—isn’t as fun and carefree as Peter led them to believe. Things take a darker turn. There are monsters known as the Many-Eyed who will gladly eat the boys if they came to their part of the island. Pirates wreak havoc on the cove, mermaids cause mischief in their usual lagoon, and then of course there’s crocodiles to be wary of. And when Peter starts to get jealous of Jamie’s attention going towards young Charlie, things get real scary, real fast.

As twisted as it may seem, I always love a retelling that takes your traditional villain and make them the one you root for. Though, if you know your fairy tales well, you pretty much know the outcome anyway. But the journey is always surprising anyway! While things in this version of Peter Pan wasn’t all we’re used to, there are still some very familiar aspects and we see more and more of them as the story goes on. And that’s another thing I always love about retellings when authors include the familiar with the new! It makes for fascinating story!

While we all know the general story of Peter Pan, we never really got to learn about Captain Hook. At least in the fairy tale sense, as we have had a few more origin stories pop up in recent years. This is his story. We learn that he too once was once a boy who wanted to have fun and stay young forever. But then he learns that Peter lies. There is much more to the world of “Neverland” than we ever knew before. It’s almost heartrending with the outcome, though again, it’s one we already know. But the details, the details are heartrending! Lost Boy was a fantastically magical read and I loved every moment of it!

 

Overall Rating 5/5 stars
 


Lost Boy releases July 4, 2017





2 comments:

  1. Lots of Hook stories are coming out this year -- this one sounds WAY better than the one I read. I love how this fleshes out the idea of Neverland. Great review! Thanks so much for sharing. :)

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  2. I am so happy to see that you enjoyed this one, Jessica! Such a great book!

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