Friday, March 8, 2013

Always Neverland

Always Neverland

Always Neverland

By Zoe Barton

Summary: School has only been out for one whole day, and Ashley can already tell her vacation is going to bore her to tears. With her friends out of town and her parents working nonstop, she finds herself alone and with nothing to do--until one night she wakes up and discovers Peter Pan in her bedroom, wrestling with his shadow.

Since his original adventure with the Darlings, Peter Pan has been bringing new "Wendy girls" to Neverland to take care of the Lost Boys. But Ashley's made of much tougher stuff than the Wendy girls before her--she'd rather befriend the mermaids or fight Captain Hook and his pirate crew. Creating new adventures for her friends, Ashley is bringing change to Neverland ... and not everyone is happy about it.
Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Juvenile, Retellings
Published: October 11, 2011
My Rating: 3 stars
Let me make this clear before I get a bit 'passionate' about this story; this was not a bad book.  At some parts I was really interested in the story.  However, at other times, I was counting down the pages until I could get this over with. 
First off, Ashley....was no Wendy. Or Molly Aster, for any Peter and The Starcatchers fans.  Or Sarah for any Bridge to Never Land fans.  She was more memorable than Jane, at least.  Do you see what I am trying to say? She was not as memorable as any of these 'Wendy girls.' (Though technically, Molly Aster is the first girl that Peter Pan hangs out with, even though it isn't the 'original' version. Just sayin') I liked her, but at times I was annoyed by her.  And, really? Why would you take your mother's iPod to Neverland!? I'm sure you can entertain yourself in other ways, and there's also the fact that you are probably going to break/lose it. I was proven right about this, too.  One of the earlier chapters is entitled, 'Something Eats Mom's iPod.' 
Also, compared to other Peter Pan prequels and sequels, this was rather lacking.  I will NOT compare Always Neverland's plot to the original book, because I don't think anyone can outdo that. (Though Ridley Pearson and Dave Barry came quite close.  Sorry, I am a bit of a geek. No more interruptions, promise.)
And yet another, not so small thing.  SPOILER:        HOW THE HECK DO YOU KILL OFF HOOK!? YOU CAN'T DO THAT!!!!!! now that the bad parts of this book have been thoroughly ranted upon, and I am sorry about that, let's get on to the positives about this book.
While Ashley wasn't exactly my favorite Wendy girl, she had her moments.  Like when she managed to befriend a never bird.  That was cute, I must say.  And she had some major girl power.
And the food trees were also very creative.  I was getting hungry as I was reading about the cupcake tree.
Also, the lost boys were very interesting characters.  I liked all of them very much, except for Dibs, but you weren't supposed to really like him.  They weren't background characters, like they sometimes are--"Oh yeah, here's my lost boys. You probably won't see them very much, but I'm Peter Pan so I have to have them,"--they were actually as important as Peter himself.  They were so lovable; I just wanted to give them a big bear hug.
Oh, and as I mentioned before, I did like some parts of the book.  I think that the writer has talent.  But, it was disappointing after reading other Peter Pan novels that were, simply put, fantastic. What I am saying is that it did not measure up as a sequel. 

So, it really didn't live up to my expectations. However, I could still see people enjoying it, even if they are not major Peter Pan fans, because then you won't be comparing it to every single novel that has ever been written about him.  However, I think Peter Pan fans could still enjoy it.

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