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Second Star

3.62  ·  Rating details ·  2,398 ratings  ·  583 reviews
A twisty story about love, loss, and lies, this contemporary oceanside adventure is tinged with a touch of dark magic as it follows seventeen-year-old Wendy Darling on a search for her missing surfer brothers. Wendy’s journey leads her to a mysterious hidden cove inhabited by a tribe of young renegade surfers, most of them runaways like her brothers. Wendy is instantly dra ...more
Hardcover, 248 pages
Published May 13th 2014 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
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Average rating 3.62  · 
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Wendy Darling
Obviously read for obvious reasons. :D

Second Star had a lovely beginning which set up the moody sunshiny vibe of California surf culture very well. This was followed by a rather dodgy middle bit, however, during which I was seething with all kinds of WENDY DARLING WOULD NOT DO THIS feelings. But but but. The last part won me over again, with a turn that wasn't entirely unexpected, but interesting all the same.

A bit more of a review to come at some point.
Second Star could easily go by the title Bad Decisions: the novel. (The movie adaptation would inevitably feature Justin Bieber.) Because really, that's all the characters in this novel make--really, really bad decisions. A retelling of Peter Pan in which Wendy is caught up in a love triangle between Peter and Hook (or Pete and Jas, respectively) should be innovative and fresh, and it was honestly a huge reason why I was looking forward to reading Second Star so much. Unfortunately, the romance ...more
Ash Wednesday
”Some of us have only ever found home when we’re on water. Some of us are always waiting for the next wave.”

My face was in a perpetual state of a frown while reading this book that I feel like sending the Botox bill to the publishers.

Seventeen year-old Wendy Darling has a bright future ahead of her who can’t seem to let go of a tragic past. Her brothers Michael and John went to surf one morning and never came home. Her parents and the police seem to have given up on the search but no
Jan 17, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc, own
Peter Pan was my favourite cartoon as a child, I must have watched my video cassette (ha!) of it at least 40 times, so it's no surprise that I was giddy about this book. While I had some qualms with it, insta-love for instance - with not one but two boy (ick) - the magical aspect of it had me delighted. It's not the kind of read that captivates from the start, but rather a book that takes you by surprise as it grows into something completely magnetic.

Grieving from the loss of her brothers, Wend
Mar 20, 2014 rated it did not like it
You'd think a novel set so very locally to me would instantly make it appealing. You'd think.

You'd think a novel with such a compelling blurb would call to me. It did. And boy, was I displeased.

I think I shall dissect that synopsis sentence by false sentence just for the fun of it.

"A twisty story about love, loss, and lies, this contemporary oceanside adventure is tinged with a touch of dark magic as it follows seventeen-year-old Wendy Darling on a search for her missing surfer brothers."

Was the
C.G. Drews
Nov 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
I doooon't know how to rate this. I'm literally torn. LITERALLY. Because on one hand, Peter Pan is my favourite story of all time. And then, while I loved reading Second Star because PETER PAN, I was a bit underwhelmed at the ending and the characters.

I mean, hello Peter?! Adorable, charming, conniving, childish and mischievous?
HE WAS NONE OF THOSE. The story is narrated by Wendy, who's looking for her twin brothers (John and Michael) who are missing. She meets Peter, who lives alone at the b
Nasty Lady MJ
Mar 04, 2014 rated it did not like it
To see full review click on one of the following links:

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Disclaimer: As far as I know there are no drugs on Neverland. Wonderland I can’t guarantee and Oz–well, we won’t even go on with what happens in Kansas. I’ll also say that I received Second Star from Netgalley and it obviously did not effect my opinion of this book.

Let’s face in, childhood classics can be bat shit crazy. As wholesome as Disney tries to make its movies there’s still some rather grotesque im
Initial reaction: I can't type all my reaction to this via tablet, but I wish this had been better. It had good ideas, even had moments of compelling writing. But the cliches and ending ruined this for me.

Full review:

Alyssa B. Sheinmel's "Second Star" is one of those books that have the "great premise, lacking execution" tag fitting it to a tee. I actually thought this book had some great ideas and a very different, but a relevant imaging of Peter Pan. Making Peter into a surfer kid, Wendy into
Feb 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This is where I thought this book would take me:

Instead it I guess it took me to the first star

It wasn't that this book was bad, it had some amazing descriptions and the plot was steady, but the ending was just so awful!

Wendy's twin brothers, John and Michael, disappear and she refuses to believe that they're really dead, since they never found the bodies. When she graduates she realizes she's losing her chance to find them and she goes on a trip to do just that when she meets a mysterious tal
Olivia (Stories For Coffee)
This quick summery read is set around a girl named Wendy whose brother’s disappeared in a surfing accident a couple of years ago. She is determined at all costs to find them to prove that they are still alive when everyone else has already lost hope. Leaving her family and best friend behind without thinking twice, Wendy tries to retrace her brother’s steps, before they went missing, and ends up at Kensington beach, home to runaway teenage surfers. She quickly connects with Pete, the head of the ...more
Nov 19, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: whyyyyyyyyy, ugh
Hey Wendy, we need to talk.

I’m a little bewildered here. How did you fuck this book up so bad? (Okay, okay, to be fair, it wasn’t entirely your fault, but, on second thought, the story is told through your eyes so actually it kind of is).

I don’t think you understand how significant it is that I disliked this book so much. Let me explain to you a thing, I was so. so. excited when I heard about Second Star. Peter Pan meets surfers, I love Peter Pan and I love surfers, loving this book is an easy j
Mogsy (MMOGC)
4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

So I don't usually read contemporary Young Adult, but when I saw the description for Second Star I was instantly intrigued. My tastes typically run towards speculative fiction, but I figured a reimagining of Peter Pan, one of my favorite fairy tales, is still close enough to be in my comfort zone. Then I heard there was also going to be a Peter, Wendy and Hook love triangle in it and ... well, okay, my curiosity just got t
Mar 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I just read this and it shattered my soul and my everything. This book is freaking amazing and if you are a fan of Peter Pan but also stories from Kasie West, you'll love this book.
It has become one of my favrouite books of all time!
A modern-day reimagining of Wendy's story with a Peter Pan and Hook love triangle?


Um, how about ZOMG YES?!
Initial Thoughts: About 2.5 stars or thereabouts, still thinking about this. This is a modern day retelling of Peter Pan. In this one, Pete is a surfer dude and so are his gang of lost boys. They live to find the next big wave. Wendy is looking for her missing (and presumed dead) brothers, who were also surfer dudes. I found this a little slow however some of the references to the Peter Pan story were clever.

The Review: 2.0 stars
Peter Pan as a surfer dude?

Second Star is a modern day retelling o
Jan 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arcs-i-own
Wow. Where to even begin with this book?!! I sat down to read it, and never got up. Read straight past my bed time, into the night, until turning the very last page. For me, the writing was absolutely enchanting and dreamlike--a fairy tale shimmering to life in a modern day retelling by the beach. By far, the most magical book I've read in a very long time.
Wendy Darling's world is shattered when her twin brothers go missing after going surfing and then never come back. Her parents are shells o
Jan 17, 2014 rated it it was ok
The synopsis for SECOND STAR promises “A twisty story about love, loss, and lies, this contemporary oceanside adventure is tinged with a touch of dark magic,” but all I received was a contemporary book set by the ocean that does indeed include lies. The story itself is pretty much based on the lies the characters tell each other.

So here’s my summary of what the book is really about:

So let’s start with the love triangle (love square?) that doesn’t really add anything to the plot except more angs
Sheyanne Royal
Jan 08, 2017 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book- for the most part. The beginning really hooked me and so did the surfing plot. Pete and "the boys" was cheese, because it was just a modern day Peter Pan type story. The ending was what made me not enjoy this book as much. ...more
Natasha (books_n_dreams)
So my exact thoughts about this book are all over the place. I really enjoyed it, but there were still answers I really wanted. I do like the twist of doing a Peter Pan contemporary story that feels like it is real. I'm such a Peter Pan fan that when this book was recommended to me I couldn't say no. I had to have it, no way around it. What I like the most about the book was the direction the story went in, it was something that was completely different. Again I loved the concept, there were jus ...more
Alexis Sky
Jan 10, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya
This is so hard for me because there was so much about the book I absolutely loved. I love the story of Peter Pan and this modern retelling had so much potential. I gave it three stars because of that. But the author failed in so many ways.
Wendy Darling's brothers are assumed dead by her family but not by Wendy. She goes in search of them only to find drifter surfers Petey and Belle and Jas (the drug dealer). She learns to surf and becomes acclimated with the world her brothers chose of her. She
Mariela Garcia
Dec 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
I am still trying to function what just happened. I am the one going crazy or the main character Wendy. Im still trying to understand what just happened. From the first few chapters I kind of figured there was going to be a twist at the end but I did not expect that to happen. To bad this is only a stand alone. But I still got questions that were not answered.
May 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Great retelling of Peter Pan, I enjoyed it a lot, and there were some strange parts, and it was a bit short, but I enjoyed it a ton!
Jen (The Starry-Eyed Revue)
An advance copy of this title was received in exchange for an honest review.

This review can also be found at The Starry-Eyed Revue.

I love a good fairy-tale retelling as much as the next girl, but still I go into each one with some amount of trepidation. What if the author butchers one of my favorite characters from my childhood? What if the story is too close to the original to stand on its own? What if the story is so vastly different from the original story that it doesn't feel like a retellin
May 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Peter Pan! It was by far my favorite childhood story, so when I discovered Second Star featuring a modern day Wendy I could not resist. In this update Peter Pan is just Pete, a former foster child and now a surfer who spends his days happily flying across the waves at a lovely secluded beach. He, his lost boys, and tiny but spirited Belle live by themselves in a dilapidated, long abandoned luxury home perched high atop the crumbling cliff that looms over the hidden cove where they surf.

Wendy is
Mar 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, favorites
I absolutely loved this story!
The story is really dreamy, just like a fairy tale. I liked the fact that it was the "retailing" of Peter Pan but in a modern way.
This story is not just about romance, it's also about the love between siblings, friendship, confusion and betrayal.

Wendy: I really like her character. When she was searching for her missing brothers, with each hint she found, I could feel the hope right with her.

Pete: Brave and responsible. He is always taking care of everyone. Even th
Tita Mirra
I almost didn't read this book because of the reviews, but I adore Peter Pan and surfing, so curiosity got the best of me. And I loved it! I understand some of the criticism, but it helps if you read it as magical realism instead of contemporary romance (can't say much more without spoiling the book). ...more
Apr 18, 2014 rated it it was ok
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Second Star by Alyssa B. Sheinmel
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Publication Date: May 13, 2014
Rating: 2 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

A twisty story about love, loss, and lies, this contemporary oceanside adventure is tinged with a touch of dark magic as it follows seventeen-year-old Wendy Darling on a search for her missing surfer brothers. Wendy’s journey leads her to a mysterious hidden cove inhabited b
Lisbeth Avery {Domus Libri}
I'm not entirely sure where I stand with this book. I somewhat enjoyed reading it, yet it was incredibly problematic. I know that it kind of sounds silly for me to say this about a Peter Pan retelling of all things but I couldn't believe any of the event at all. It was so unrealistic, and not even in an intentional way. It was just a poorly constructed story.

Second Star runs on cliches and tropes. Wendy is the straight laced, straight A, good girl who probably hasn't even thought about doing any
Peter Pan is one of my favorite Disney movies. I mean, I have a Peter Pan tattoo, so I'm not lying when I say I love it. A YA book that's a Peter Pan retelling? Sign me up!
Sheinmel has an interesting way of presenting these characters. Wendy is a girl looking for her missing brothers, John and Michael. Peter is a surfer boy she meets on her search. He lives with a bunch of runaway “lost” boys including one girl named Belle. Hook in this scenario is a drug dealer named Jas who pedals “star dust”.
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Alyssa Sheinmel is the New York Times bestselling author of several novels for young adults, including A Danger to Herself and Others and Faceless. She is the co-author of The Haunting of Sunshine Girl and its sequel, The Awakening of Sunshine Girl. Alyssa grew up in Northern California and New York, and currently lives and writes in New York City. Follow her on Instagram @alyssasheinmel and Twitt ...more

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