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Peter and Wendy and Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens (Peter Pan #1-2)

4.08  ·  Rating Details ·  4,577 Ratings  ·  209 Reviews
All children, except one, grow up."

Peter Pan originally appeared as a baby living a magical life among birds and fairies in J.M. Barrie's sequence of stories, Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens. His later role as flying boy hero was brought to the stage by Barrie in the beloved play Peter Pan, which opened in 1904 and became the novel Peter and Wendy in 1911. In a narrative f
Paperback, 234 pages
Published December 1st 2005 by Penguin Classics (first published 1906)
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Alicia Peter and Wendy is the original novelisation Peter Pan, Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens is, as far as I understood, taken from Barrie's The White…morePeter and Wendy is the original novelisation Peter Pan, Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens is, as far as I understood, taken from Barrie's The White Bird, it's the first place Peter Pan appeared in his works, even before the play, in fact the Peter Pan in this version is very different, it's quite interesting.
But to answer your question, no it isn't a sequel, it's a book that combines the original Peter Pan novel and the story in which the very first Peter Pan originated. Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens could possibly be seen as a kind of prequel, although Barrie did very much rework Peter in his later works on Peter Pan (play and then novel).
It's interesting if you're interested in the origins and how a writer comes up with a concept and the process that takes place in bringing that concept to life. (less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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MJ Nicholls
Peter Pan or, How one man’s repressed paedophilia captured children’s imaginations for a century, was a cheery wee book. My reason for reading this as an adult? I have not grown up. I remain frozen in childhood. Whenever I find myself in adult surroundings, like an estate agent office, I wiggle in my chair and fight back the urge to say things like “how can you do that, pretend to wear the suit and act all grown up?” as I suck on my lollipop. Yes. Your humble reviewer might be able coast through ...more
May 23, 2008 Alina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Barrie says of Peter somewhere: “Oh, he was merry! He was as much merrier than you, for instance, as you are merrier than your father.” With all due respect, he could not have made a worse choice of adjective. Merriment is joy grounded in something solid; Peter is certainly gay, but there is nothing merry about him, nor about his world.

Now, I don’t dislike the world of Peter Pan for being magical; if anything, it is not magical enough. The hallmark of a really magical world is that everything ma
Sep 07, 2014 Indah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, classics
"To die would be an awfully big adventure."

Peter Pan is one of these stories that means a lot to me, meant a lot to me and always will mean a lot to me. It's the story my dad read to me about a billion times for a bedtime story, the sequel of the Disney movie was my first ever movie I saw in a cinema.

And my dad always says that it was so important to him because it's a story for children and their parents, with so many layers. And now I'm 16 and a little closer to 'adulthood' than I was than
Oh that was marvelous. Where to start? I've been familiar with the story of Peter Pan for most of my life. As so many of you, I grew up with the Disney film. I must admit that it wasn't one of my favourites, but I remember the mermaid-scene vividly. The film and novel aren't that different from one another plot-wise( as far as I remember. Cut me some slack on this one, it's been at least 10 years since I've last seen Peter Pan ), but what struck me most about the novel is how vastly different th ...more
Jul 16, 2007 M rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: the WORLD
Like the best children's books, especially children's fantasies (meant in its most expansive definition), much darker and thornier than the versions everyone remembers. The novel is even a couple steps darker and more poignant than the play, with a would-be murderous Tinker Bell (two words, okay?!), Wendy getting seriously confused over whether she's a child or adult, the constant description of youth as "gay, innocent and heartless", the mass death of most of the Indians, and the incredible cal ...more
Ayu Palar
Apr 04, 2009 Ayu Palar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I first knew Peter Pan from that Disney’s film, and after knowing the boy for many many years, I finally got into the original text written by J. M. Barrie. I am really impressed since I never thought that the story is much complicated and philosophical. That made me wonder whether Barrie wrote this book for kids or not (from Finding Neverland, he wrote it for kids). I also found this heartbreaking tone in Peter Pan, especially the scene when Peter finally finds that Wendy has grown up. Is it a ...more
Jan 20, 2016 Enaya rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a really cute book! I absolutely loved delving into the world of Peter Pan again, it brought back so many memories <3
Mar 02, 2016 Sherri rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I did not care much for Peter Pan but Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens made up for it a bit. I tried to go into it without thinks of the Disney version but it was difficult.
Apr 26, 2013 Antonomasia rated it really liked it
Penguin Classics edition with introduction & notes by Jack Zipes

A book "directed in part at younger readers, it is clearly ... written primarily for adult readers", and to remind them what it is to be childlike and imaginative - and less appealingly given Barrie's paternalistic manner "to explain children to adults". I do like the introduction here a lot. It does spend too much time on biographical detail that differs surprisingly little from Finding Neverland - but it only quickly alludes t
Mar 15, 2017 Chari rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Leído en español, y una vez más, Goodreads no encontró mi edición escaneada. Comprendo que a los niños pueda resultarle largo para leer entero seguido, yo lo he disfrutado mucho leyéndolo a capítulos durante varios días y me ha encantado.
May 13, 2015 Sinead rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, sad, funny, cute
Some books will always remain classics. Harry Potter, the Chronicles of Narnia, Lord of the Rings. They will be remembered for years to come. So will Peter Pan. Most people know it as the 1956 Disney movie, which is what I knew it as too. Then I watched the 2003 real-life film, and Finding Neverland (the retelling of how Barrie was inspired to write Peter Pan). Watching all those movies got me a little obsessed with Peter and the wonderful and exciting world of Neverland, where mermaids, pirates ...more
Jan 31, 2015 Andie rated it it was amazing
Inspired by Barrie’s friendship and patronage of the Llewelyn Davies family, the story of Peter Pan, the boy who will never grow up, first appeared in Barrie’s 1902 novel The Little White Bird, written for adults, as a story the narrator tells a young boy as they walk in Kensington Gardens. The section where Pan first appears is included in the Penguin Edition and is definitely worth reading in order to understand Pan’s myth. The story we are most familiar with, however, was published in novel f ...more
Oct 25, 2012 Jolene rated it did not like it
Shelves: classic, reviewed
2 stars for the last 1/3 of the book, no stars for the first 2/3.

I think I would have liked this book more if I had skipped the introduction. I may have ended up seeing things that weren't really there. After reading the intro, I saw this book as nothing more then Barrie writing this story to get over mommy issues.

I honestly found nothing likeable about Peter. He was a sadistic bully who found joy in murdering anyone he felt like. We're told while Peter is away, Neverland is a happy place. Every
Aug 29, 2015 Stephanie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Naomi Smith
Shelves: fantasy, own, favorites
Reading this, you can easily tell it is meant to be read aloud. The flow of the words, the pacing, and even the narrator's little asides all lend themselves beautifully to being read aloud. And J. M. Barrie's tale of a timeless boy is a timeless tale for all to read and enjoy.

Like many, I was first familiar with Peter Pan through the Disney adaptation. While good in its own right, the book has so much more depth and so many more layers to Peter Pan and the Neverland than Disney was able to touch
Jul 02, 2011 Grace rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book contains both the classic story "Peter Pan" and the story "Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens." Though I have read "Peter Pan" before and thoroughly enjoyed it, for some reason in this reading, I came away with a sense of sadness at the end of the story. This may be due to the fact that Peter Pan does not stay with Wendy, and often times forgets to come back to visit her, but also to the fact that we are reminded that we must all grow up and lose our innocence. I feel that many of us ofte ...more
Jennifer Jensen (Literally Jen)
This book is really hard for me to rate. First of all, I love and adore Peter Pan. The play, the movies (Disney and the 2003 film, as well as "Hook"), and even the spin-offs, adaptations, etc.

We see so very little of Never-Land and all of its magic in this short little novel. The narrator is a little too involved for my taste (Barrie, I still love you for providing me with hours of entertainment...really, I disrespect here...) and for the type of story I wanted this to be, I would prefe
Mar 19, 2016 Annemieke rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, 2-star, 2016
Peter Pan is a figure I think we all remember thanks to the Disney movies about him. Most of us will also know that it is based on a book by J.M. Barrie. Based but certainly not the same. While the main idea is the same, Peter Pan and the others are a bit different.

While Peter Pan and the other story in the book I read, Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, were quite short, it did not feel like it at all. In fact especially the starts of both stories felt incredibly drawn out by longwinded descript
*3.5 stars

so I liked this original Peter Pan story so so much more than the Disney version I've seen. (and the musical for that matter, I saw a Dutch musical version and yes it's for children but it was just too childish)
The way this story is told is lovely and its a classic I really could get into.
I'm not going to say a lot about the story since I suspect that most of you already know it but this was a refreshing telling of the story and also the original which made me understand why this story
Anthony William
Mar 28, 2016 Anthony William rated it really liked it
The Disney film was a hallmark of my childhood so I was excited to read the book. Although it wasn't what I expected, the snippets of charm and humour certainly served to delight me. I was particularly fond of Mr. Darling and his sensible silliness.

However there were also unexpected snippets of darkness. Although the killing didn't bother me, what did bother me was the cruelty sometimes evident in the narrator. I particularly wasn't fond of the line about Mrs. Darling being dead and forgotten, a
Feb 07, 2016 Yasmine rated it liked it
So many mixed feelings. I really do love Peter Pan, the archetype, the kind of never-growing-up character, because I strongly identify with it... But I never would have guessed how cruel and strange the actual Barrie character is!

I'm sure there is plenty to analyse in this novel (Peter Pan and Wendy) but right now, my feelings are unsettled. Peter is cruel, selfish and ignorant. Is it a way to teach readers that growing up is actually best? That children are selfish little pricks?
Peter forgets a
Yousra Bushehri
Re-Read Review
There are so many things that you just don't notice the first time. It's just awesome. Like opening up an origami puzzle.

I reread this for a paper I'm writing for one of my MA classes. THERE WAS SOOO MUCH GOING ON!!


I never thought this book would be as good as it turned out to be. I thought that since I knew the gist of the story that nothing would surprise me or move me in a big way. But this book was a complete and utter j
Dec 17, 2016 Ross rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"So long as children are gay and innocent and heartless"

This was a really beautiful book, to be honest. I mean, who doesn't love the story of Peter Pan?
Feb 29, 2016 Sarah rated it really liked it
I read this book for the first time when I was a lot younger, and I never understood the gravity of the ending until now. Reading it this time around, I wasn't all that impressed with the first 90% of the book. It was the same old story I'd heard many times before and seen in the movies, and it was cute and reminiscent of my childhood, but nothing huge. The last chapter, however, was different. It was much heavier and more realistic. It's hard to put into words, but Barrie somehow perfectly capt ...more
Mar 10, 2008 Gabrielle rated it liked it
Recommended to Gabrielle by: Ciara
Shelves: fiction
I like the introduction/critique in the Penguin classic books, and I would recommend Penguin classics to everyone.

I thought this book was interestingly written especially based on the common Peter Pan story we know from Disney. The role of the narrator sometimes seems overly involved. Overall the story of Peter and Wendy was a fun read.

I must say that the short story Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens I found quite dull. His adventures were not all that interesting. It is interesting how Barrie dev
Sep 16, 2011 Alex rated it really liked it
1906 - 1911 -

I read this a while back and somehow forgot to write anything whatever about it, or mark it as read, or anything. I remember liking it; it was fairly dark, moved fast. Can't remember if I thought there were weird sexual undertones or was surprised to find there weren't.

Humph. I hate when I don't document properly.
The Treeman
Apr 04, 2014 The Treeman rated it really liked it
Shelves: classic
Basically saying that humans are adaptable creatures especially when growing up. Still it is a fine tale but if you have ever watch a play, a movie or even Disney's version of Peter Pan then there isn't much to be surprised about in the novel.
Jul 31, 2010 Kathryn marked it as on-hold  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own, classic
It is a blessing he did not know, for otherwise he would have lost faith in his power to fly, and the moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it. The reason birds can fly and we can't is simply that they have perfect faith, for to have faith is to have wings.
Sep 28, 2014 Mie rated it it was amazing
'All children grow up; except one' - a classic which never gets old
Feb 14, 2015 Susan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Despite the issues of racism, I found this book beautifully written.
Raeleen Lemay
Dec 24, 2012 Raeleen Lemay rated it liked it
Shelves: classics
A children's novel with a lot of insight into the ways of children... Interesting!
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Goodreads Librari...: Wrong Peter Pan book? Or a wrong original title? 2 19 Dec 11, 2014 07:18PM  
Read by Theme: Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie 7 39 Aug 20, 2012 12:42PM  
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Sir James Matthew Barrie, 1st Baronet, OM (9 May 1860 – 19 June 1937) was a Scottish author and dramatist, best remembered today as the creator of Peter Pan.

The child of a family of small-town weavers, he was educated in Scotland. He moved to London, where he developed a career as a novelist and playwright. There he met the Llewelyn Davies boys who inspired him in writing about a baby boy who has
More about J.M. Barrie...

Other Books in the Series

Peter Pan (3 books)
  • Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens
  • The Little White Bird
  • Peter Pan

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“See," he said, "the arrow struck against this. It is the kiss I gave her. It has saved her life.” 38 likes
“Again came that ringing crow, and Peter dropped in front of them. "Greeting, boys," he cried, and mechanically they saluted, and then again was silence.
He frowned.
"I am back," he said hotly, "why do you not cheer?”
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