You know how I love Peter Pan, and it's always risky reading any kind of retelling, but... Wow. This book was incredible. It takes the theme of deathYou know how I love Peter Pan, and it's always risky reading any kind of retelling, but... Wow. This book was incredible. It takes the theme of death from Barrie's original, which has largely been lost in subsequent retellings, and takes it to a whole new level. The mythology all makes sense, the story is multifaceted, and it really makes you think. I liked how she tied together Barrie (including the stories of his dead brother David and his relationship with the Llewellyn Davies family), the fictional Darlings, Peter, and the fictional Preston and his family. It all meshed so well. The multiple points of view (the deceased Preston, his grieving mother, Wendy, and Peter) really lent itself to a complex picture of what death (and life) means on either side of the divide. There were lots of layers and subtle overlapping of characters between Here (Neverland) and Before (real life) that you can either read right past as you enjoy the story or pay close attention and get even more out of it. I can't really do it justice.
The only reason it didn't get 5 stars (and it came awfully close) is because I was irritated by a handful of editing errors (I know, I know) and because I wasn't really satisfied with the motivation behind the murderer's crime and the convenience with which the person was able to get away with it so unrealistically. Basically, the death of Preston was a majorly important plot point, and logic seemed to flee with the necessity of making it happen. It seemed like a weak point in an otherwise very strong story.
I would recommend this book to just about anyone, including Peter Pan fans and anyone interested in thinking about what happens when we die and why we live. So good....more
I so wanted to give this one a 5, but I couldn't quite do it. Mostly, that's because the big "cliffhanger" that everyone keeps referring to was so obvI so wanted to give this one a 5, but I couldn't quite do it. Mostly, that's because the big "cliffhanger" that everyone keeps referring to was so obvious from close to the beginning of the book, which was frustrating. I mean, on one hand cliffhangers are annoying because you want to know what happens, but on the other hand, the anticipation makes the next book so much better! I'm still looking forward to see where the story is going, but it's not quite the same.
Anyway, that being said, this was a fantastic book. It was shockingly original even as it relied on very old material. (That would be Cinderella, in case that's not clear.) Except instead of a glass slipper, we have a cyborg foot. And a futuristic "New Bejing," where a bubonic/choleric type plague is killing citizens and royalty alike. The city was well written, the culture was interesting and easy to fall into, the characters (particularly Cinder and her android sidekick) were easy to get to know. The story was engaging, and even though I saw the big twist from a mile away, it still tells me that book two is going to go in very interesting directions. I liked how she roughly followed the Cinderella plot of stepsisters and "shoes" and princes and balls enough to make it recognizable, comfortable, and familiar, and yet also changed it to make it her own (aside from the whole cyborg/futuristic story, Cinder is actually friends with one of her stepsisters).
This book was so great. Unique, refreshing, and practically un-put-downable. (I read it in two sittings, which probably would have been one sitting if I hadn't had to go to book club the first evening!) I've been looking for some good YAF sci-fi for awhile, and this definitely gets top billing on the list. Yay!...more
I was impressed by this novel. It had the dark but hopeful feel of a fairy tale, I had no idea how it would end (or how I wanted it to), it made me thI was impressed by this novel. It had the dark but hopeful feel of a fairy tale, I had no idea how it would end (or how I wanted it to), it made me think, and the descriptions were pure magic. I would definitely recommend it!...more