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Review by Seth Madaris
“Peter was the leader of the boys because he was the oldest. Or maybe he wasn’t.”
Peter and the Starcatchers is written by Dave Barry (yes, that Dave Barry) and Ridley Pearson. It is a prequel of sorts to the wonderful mythos of Peter Pan. Knowing only the basics of the Peter Pan story (mostly from Disney and Spielberg’s Hook), I came in with knowledge but not really much as far as canon. As far as I’m concerned…this is canon.
We are immediately introduced to the orphan Peter and in the first sentence, we are drawn to him. Just the way he is described as the self appointed leader of a group of orphans is magical and so Peter Panish!
Slowly characters (and titles) are introduced and we are off on an adventure that successfully acts as an origin to the boy who never grew up. Let’s just say no stone is left unturned, from mermaids to the natives, from Tinker Bell to Peter’s never ending youth.
To recap. Peter and a group of orphans are to be shipped off across the sea to serve under an infamous king known for feeding his servants to his giant serpent. Along the way Peter meets a mysterious girl named Molly who has quite a past…a past that sets up pretty much every aspect of the mythos of Peter Pan. Along the way they are pursued by the vicious pirate Black Stache and his motley crew, who is interested in a special trunk stowed away on the ship carting Peter and the others.
Amongst the multiple “villains”, Black Stache stands out substantially. Prone to bits of anger and excessiveness, his cruel demeanor is the very personification of a pirate and may be the only aspect of the literature that I would recommend a little “parental” policing of. Not so much what he does, but what he implies he has done is pretty dark, but hey, he’s a pirate. Definitely more Barbossa than Sparrow.
Fantastic nautical action set pieces (if “The Ladies” don’t make you laugh, check your pulse.), witty and believable dialogue, just enough mystery to keep one at the edge of their seat and over all, just one fine piece of literature.
Surely, surely there was something to complain about, right? Some sort of negative aspect. Something that didn’t work?
Honestly, I can’t think of any. Seriously, I read the thing in one day. Less than one day. If you like excellent writing, if you like Peter Pan, read this. You won’t be disappointed.
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My name is Seth Madaris and I am the husband to a wonderful wife and father to two beautiful children. I absolutely love to read and I honestly don’t think I day has gone by that I haven’t had some sort of a book in my hand. I also love to write and would love to be published one day. However, my favorite pastime is without doubt, jumping on the trampoline.