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Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens / Peter and Wendy

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  5,585 ratings  ·  268 reviews
In Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, J.M. Barrie first created Peter Pan as a baby, living a wild and secret life with birds and fairies in the middle of London. Later Barrie let this remarkable child grow a little older and he became the boy-hero of Neverland, making his first appearance, with Wendy, Captain Hook, and the Lost Boys, in Peter and Wendy. The Peter Pan storie ...more
Paperback, Oxford World's Classics, 288 pages
Published October 28th 1999 by Oxford University Press (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)

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Average rating 4.06  · 
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 ·  5,585 ratings  ·  268 reviews

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Charlotte May
3.5 stars!
My copy is split into the two stories, Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens and Peter and Wendy, and they are so different!

Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens.

"The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease forever 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."

This story focuses on the origin of Peter Pan. A young child of only 7 days falls out of his pram and lives with the birds and the fairies in
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 rated it liked it
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 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, favorites
"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
Mariel Zani Begoña
Peter Pan was AWFUL. Gave it 1⭐ But I rather enjoyed Peter Pan In Kensington Gardens (3⭐). So, overall 2⭐
Aug 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Naomi Smith
Shelves: favorites, own, fantasy
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 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
May 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, cute, funny, sad
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
Oct 25, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
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
A book that can be enjoyed by children as well as by adults.
While the plot and the several events in this book are written to cater to a kid's imagination, it includes jokes and references (e.g. to history, other books...) that are probably more suitable for the enjoyment of their parents. Such clever hints were my greatest joy while reading, and best of all you don't have to get them all yourself because, in my edition at least, they are explained in a glossary, so everyone can enjoy the book
Joana Veríssimo
I read Peter and Wendy just a few months ago and it became my favorite classic and today it's one of my favorite books, so I bought this edition. But I'm not rereading the story now, but reading Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens and the play "The Boy who would never grow up" which I found online in Gutenberg Australia
Starting with the play, the dedication was so beautiful and then again the stage directions were so well done and hilarious how things were put. The story was very much the same as th
Ayu Palar
Apr 04, 2009 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 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 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
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.
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
Jan 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
Jul 02, 2011 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
Annemieke / A Dance with Books
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 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
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
Anna Groover
"All children, except one, grow up."

It's not often that I review a book without giving it a star rating, but if there's one I think necessitates a lack of that, it's this one. I read Peter and Wendy (the novelized version of Peter Pan, categorized as the "definitive" version by the author, J. M. Barrie) for a children's literature class I'm in this semester. We're using a Freudian lens to look at a lot of the books we're reading, and while I loved the new light it cast on the story of Peter Pan
Mar 30, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
We had to read this for Children's Literature and I enjoyed it quite thoroughly. Obviously, this is about Peter Pan, and it has so many themes and symbols that are quite intriguing. I really liked Peter Pan and although he acted completely his age, he was a fascinating character. Peter and Wendy is very similar to the Disney movie and I found that to be incredibly intriguing. Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens we did not have to read for class, but I read anyways out of curiosity and found it to be ...more
Nov 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I read this ages ago when I was in eighth or nineth grade and went on a big J.M. Barrie kick. I read some of the plays too. I think my idea was to check on the accuracy of Disney movies. I read the original Bambi then too. Disney had messed up Johnnie Tremaine big time, so I felt the need to check the rest.
'All children grow up; except one' - a classic which never gets old
Dec 17, 2016 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?
Samantha Grubey (ABookHaven)
Still totally in love with Peter Pan but definitely prefer the movie rather than the book!
Jan 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really love the whimsical elements of both stories, like a dream. While you're reading (and if you're immersed enough) it makes sense and is a wonderful time. But, on later thinking it doesn't make any sense and when you try to retell it to someone else it's really disjointed.
Of course this is an old ass book and people back in the days were horribly prejudiced so fair warning to people who've never read books from way back-be prepared for constant racial slurs and belittlement of women.
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Goodreads Librari...: Wrong Peter Pan book? Or a wrong original title? 2 22 Dec 11, 2014 07:18PM  
Read by Theme: Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie 7 41 Aug 20, 2012 12:42PM  

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Sir James Matthew Barrie, 1st Baronet, OM was a Scottish author and dramatist, best remembered today as the creator of Peter Pan.

The son of a weaver, Barrie studied at the University of Edinburgh. He took up journalism, worked for a Nottingham newspaper, and contributed to various London journals before moving to London in 1885. His early works, Auld Licht Idylls (1889) and A Window in Thrums (188
“See," he said, "the arrow struck against this. It is the kiss I gave her. It has saved her life.” 42 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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