Emily May's Reviews > Tiger Lily

Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson
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's review
Mar 11, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: young-adult, fantasy, 2012, coverly-love, favourites
Recommended to Emily May by: Crowinator
Read from July 05 to 06, 2012

Edit 04/04/2013: I read this almost a year ago now and it still haunts me in the best possible way. So I just wanted to share this song with you because it reminds me of this book so much.


"Sometimes I think that maybe we are just stories. Like we may as well just be words on a page, because we're only what we've done and what we are going to do."

Everything about the appearance and description of this book it seems is geared towards the wrong audience. If it hadn't been for Crowinator's review I would have written this off as another cheesy romance that's okay when you're eight years old and watching a disney film but should otherwise be avoided. There are a number of readers I can see picking this up: romance enthusiasts, those who enjoy novels that are like disney films, or those who've read Anderson's other books (girl scouts and teen troubles). They will probably be disappointed.

How best can I put this? I know, I'll use TV shows! Let's take 90210 first of all. This is a show about rich people, celebrities, first world problems and a lifestyle with glitter on it. It's about life in Los Angeles. You know what else is about life in LA? Angel (Buffy spin-off). But Angel tells a different story, one of dingy backstreets, prostitutes, drug addicts and criminals. It's the same city but it's the story of lives that don't sparkle. If you're wondering how this is at all relevant, well, Peter Pan is 90210, and Tiger Lily is Angel.

This novel tells the tale of the dark underbelly of Neverland where the good guys don't always win and love doesn't always triumph. It's so much darker and sadder than I could have possibly imagined. Even though we are told from the start that this is a love story, it is more than that. It's about loss and loneliness and fear of change. Because who would fear change more than those who'd never had to experience growing up and dying?

Tiger Lily is one of the loneliest characters ever. Her other tribe members believe her to be cursed and she has long battled against the torment of not quite being accepted. After one misstep too many, she is told she must marry Giant - a violent oaf of a man who mistreats her whenever the chance presents itself. It is only natural that when she discovers a boy out in the forest who's almost as lonely as she is that she would fall in love with him.

By telling the story from Tinkerbell's point of view, we are able to hear it on a very personal level and get a close look at all the characters individually whilst having a wider scope than normal 1st person allows. The story itself is cleverly woven with elements of the one we know from disney and the original book. Did you ever wonder how a crocodile came to be hanging around with a ticking clock down his throat? Well, now I know.

The villains in this story are as complex as everyone else and Anderson offers new and interesting traits for familiar characters. James Hook is a sad, old man who came to Neverland on dreams of staying young forever - but his mission failed. He has since then lost himself to drink and his obsession with Peter Pan; Hook's hatred for himself and the world around him is all channelled into his hatred for Peter. Also, Smee (remember him?) is a strange case who murders those he admires for their strength and beauty but then mourns their deaths.

I don't know how deliberate it was, but I found myself comparing the "Englanders" in this book with the settlers in North America that made every effort to change the religion and culture of the natives. Tiger Lily's tribe rescue an injured Englander and nurse him back to full health, but once he is back on his feet he begins "educating" the tribe in the rules of God and what is appropriate dress and how those who don't fulfill their purpose will not go to heaven. You can see how easily it would be to change people through fear of eternal punishment, how to easily put what-ifs in their mind and make them question what they've always believed.

So, this is not the story I expected to read. But it's beautiful, I loved the writing style and the characters. The people in this book have their strengths and they have their weaknesses, and sometimes those weaknesses are too much for them to handle. The ending is both happy and sad, it isn't the one you wanted but I guess that's life for you.

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Quotes Emily May Liked

Jodi Lynn Anderson
“Sometimes I think that maybe we are just stories. Like we may as well just be words on a page, because we're only what we've done and what we are going to do.”
Jodi Lynn Anderson, Tiger Lily

Jodi Lynn Anderson
“It turned out that my curiosity did not outweigh my courage after all. Sometimes love means not being able to bear seeing the one you love the way they are, when they're not what you hoped for.”
Jodi Lynn Anderson, Tiger Lily

Reading Progress

07/05/2012 page 203
70.0% "ADE - Chapter 25"

Comments (showing 1-50 of 74) (74 new)

message 1: by Kyle (new) - added it

Kyle I never expected this to be THAT good! O.O

Emily May I really loved it, Kyle. Hope you do too!

message 3: by Kyle (new) - added it

Kyle LOL, I'm very interested to see what Wendy would think of this book. XD

message 4: by Anne (new)

Anne Wow if Wendy reads this book, oh lord, the Irony! Lol

message 5: by Shannon (new) - added it

Shannon I really wanna read this :D

Rachel (aka Ms4Tune) wow, great review! i seriously can't wait now for my copy to arrive.

Emily May Thanks Rachel :) Hopefully you'll like it as much as I did!

Keri (Va-Voom!) Another great review! :)

Emily May Thank you Keri :)

message 10: by Ela (new) - added it

Ela Wow, it sounds great! Georgeus review.

Emily May It is :) Thanks Ela!

message 12: by Molly (new) - added it

Molly Talbert Oh, how exciting! I just added this to my list. Wonderful review!

Jennika Awesome review! Thanks Emily!

Emily May Thanks Molly and Jennika!

shady Wow. Your review makes me want to read this so bad. Is it really from Tinkerbell's POV?

message 16: by Maya (new) - rated it 3 stars

Maya so glad you liked this. I added it a bit skeptically but now I'm looking forward to it.

Jasprit Awesome review Emily! You've made me even more excited to get my hands on a copy! :)

Emily May Thanks everyone! :)

fяσzєи wrote: "Is it really from Tinkerbell's POV?"

Yep. You find out there's so much more to her than the moody little fairy disney showed.

message 19: by Ela (new) - added it

Ela I looked up this book on Amazon and saw your review there as well! It's a small world :D

Crowinator Lovely review, Emily. Glad you felt the same about the book. Thanks for complimenting my review too!

Emily May You're welcome! Thanks for bringing this to my attention :D

message 22: by Andrea (new)

Andrea Blythe Fantastic review. I'm definitely going to have to read this one.

Emily May Thanks Andrea :)

Amanda This book sounded so good. And your review makes me even more excited to read it! Thanks for a great review! :)

Emily May Thanks Amanda :) Hope you enjoy it!

message 26: by Julie (new) - added it

Julie Great review but I must comment on your 90201/Angel comparison to Peter Pan/Tiger Lily. There is a lot of darkness in the original Peter Pan. Life is dangerous and betrayals and abandonments abound. Nice review - I just wanted to point out the original isn't very light and fluffy.

Emily May Thanks Julie. I have read the original and, though I can see your point, I just think it was comparatively much lighter than Tiger Lily. The darker messages in Peter Pan strike me more as subtle undertones to the child-friendly adventure story. But thanks for sharing your thoughts :)

message 28: by Kelli (new) - added it

Kelli Lee Hauntingly beautiful song, so much so I teared up. More like cried. Unrequited love sucks and if anyone knows that all too well, it's Tinkerbell. Anyhow, thanks for sharing the heartbreaking song.

Emily May Isn't it? It gives me goosebumps :'(

7hir7een I keep seeing this book around, but you've convinced me to add it to my definitely read pile. The 90210/Angel comparison really resonated with me. Thanks for the great review!

Emily May Thank you so much :) I really hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Crowinator Excellent song -- very nice choice as a pairing. (c:

shady Unliked this review just to re-like it again. That song is beautiful. Just like this review. :D Lol, I'm kissing ass by now, but I love you Emily!

Emily May Haha, Frozen, thank you! The feeling is mutual :D

message 35: by Sara (new) - added it

Sara love the song. thanks for inadvertently helping me to find the song landfill. after hearing those 2 i now know that i need an album.

Emily May I love Daughter so much! Trust me, the whole album is worth listening to :)

Tarra grrat review! i completely loved this read as well!

Emily May Thank you, Tarra :)

message 39: by Amanda (new) - added it

Amanda Alright, is the song peter a hidden track?? I'm having the hardest time finding it and I'm in love! HELP!

Emily May No, don't think so. I think it's not been officially released yet :( It didn't make it onto her new album, anyway. But it's so beautiful, isn't it? *sigh*

message 41: by Amanda (new) - added it

Amanda It's stunning. I'll have to settle for repeat on YouTube. I'm so glad you linked that. I bought about five other songs of theirs. My ears are happy. Now to buy the book. :-)

Nikki I wanted to read this book because I read your review, and thank you for writing this wonderful review because the book was beautiful and amazing, and this review basically summed it up.

Emily May Thank you, Nikki! I'm so glad you enjoyed it - beautiful review, btw :D

Nikki Thank you! But I definitely don't express my feelings as well as you do :) probably because I haven't been reviewing anything until recently :P

message 45: by Jessica (new)

Jessica Sparks I'm convinced- must buy now. Not that I even need to say it but, like always, great review:)

Emily May Thank you, Jessica :) Hope you love it!

Sahana Your review is on point- it describes all the subtle elements that reoccur throughout the book that's easy to miss. This book tormented me emotionally and as you described it will haunt a person forever.

message 48: by Zoe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Zoe Love this review! So brilliant! I'm actually playing Tiger Lily in a theater production of Peter Pan, so this should be really interesting character development for me! :) Looking forward to starting it soon!

Emily May Thanks, Zoe! Good luck with your production and I hope you enjoy the book :)

Shell The Belle Excellent review. Adding this to my TBR. Thanks Emily! xx

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