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Sunday, August 19, 2012

Peter Pan's Past Plus

Booker's Review
Peter and the Starcatchers (Starcatchers Series #1)  by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson

Peter and the Starcatchers (Starcatchers Series #1)I had avoided this book for a long time, even though the artwork was very appealing and customers asked for the book often.  I'm not much of a Peter Pan fan and didn't want to read a retelling of the story.  When trying to decide from a limited choice of audio books to take on our long car trip, we settled on Peter and the Starcatchers.  I was very pleasantly surprised.  (It doesn't hurt that the audio book is read by Jim Dale.)

The story is really a prequel to the Peter Pan most are familiar with.  It is fun to follow the story as different elements of Peter Pan's past are revealed such as how he can fly, how he came to be in Neverland, how he met Tinkerbell, and more. 

The story is interesting on it's own as well.  The authors did a good job of adding their own plot to the story so the book is much more than a revelation of Peter Pan's past.  We are introduced to the Starcatchers.  These people gather the left over remains of fallen stars and secret it away into safe keeping.  The remnants retain powerful magic that anyone with an evil intention could use to rule or destroy the world.  This first book has a nice conclusion while still leaving the reader anticipating what more is to come.

There's one more thing I liked about this book that I have to mention.  I have never liked the way the Indians are portrayed in the Disney Peter Pan movie.  With all these "re-mastered" and :now available in 3-D" announcements, I thought they'd come out with "new scenes" for Peter Pan and fix the awful sterotypical and racist portrayal of the natives in the movie.  There's no way they could have portrayed African natives that stupid or stereotypical and have kept it like that this entire time.  There would have been an outrage.  Anyway, I really liked how the native people are portrayed in the book.  They are not perfect, no one in the story is, but they are not stupid and they are not friends with the people they view have threatened them.  I really appreciated their role in the story.

Blogger's Review
"Peter and the Starcatchers":  This was a really good story by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. What Barry and Pearson have done is kick off a series that tells us all the origin of Peter Pan.

Peter and 4 other orphans are being sent away from their orphanage for unknown reasons. They are told by their caretaker to board a ship called The Neverland, but they don't know why. On the ship, the boys are treated very poorly, and as the leader of the group, Peter takes to stealing food to make sure the boys have enough to eat. It's on these food missions that Peter comes to know Molly, and they embark on an adventure to secure a chest of "star stuff" (the little bits of a star that falls to the earth and grants powers to the user), and keep this chest from falling into the hands of the Evil Black Stash. Along the way, we find out how Peter gains the ability to fly, how he doesn't grow old, and how he and the lost boys end up on that island. Oh, and we meet Captain Hook for the first time.

I really liked this story! I'm hoping to read others in the series soon. There's humor and plenty of action, and it's all offset with a story of friendship and loss. Just a really good book.

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