Christina Henry takes you into the world of Peter Pan, but not like you remember Neverland …
I myself am a sucker when it comes to fairytales and retellings. I would prefer to read them all! (All in good time.) So I was thrilled when I came across Christina Henry’s Lost Boy, and couldn’t wait to get started. But … It took me a while to finish it, and I’ll explain why in a minute.
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.
Never thought Neverland
was so cruel
Let me start with the pluses: Christina knows how to create a unique world in no time, of a world that we (think) have known for a long time! And turn everything the people know about Peter Pan completely upside down. At the end of the story, you would prefer to embrace ‘Hook’, and wish Peter to be as dead as Hook (sorry, not sorry).
Christina’s writing style is, so to speak, colorful in a dark world, and she’s really good at creating an atmosphere. But…
Patient readers required
Because the beginning … no, I dare say … the first half of the book, felt rather slow. I had no qualms about putting the book down (and it wasn’t because I read the book in English). In retrospect, every thought, emotion, and scene was needed to deliver the punch in the climax, but it really is something you have to go through for a while.
I wouldn’t have done it any differently
Nevertheless, I don’t think if I had written the story, I wouldn’t want to change it. Everything fits together. And once you have passed the middle you go through it like an express train. That was also the moment that it was more difficult for me to put the book down, and the story started to haunt my mind while daydreaming, and that is exactly what I want with a story.
Do I want to reread it?
Such a difficult question! Because somehow the story sticks with me, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I would have liked. So for now I don’t tend to, but who knows, someday …