I received an eARC from the publishers through netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This is a novel that had been on my radar and that I kept my eyes peeled for to request an eARC.
Here’s a synopsis of Never Never by Brianna Shrum that can be found on goodreads:
James Hook is a child who only wants to grow up.
When he meets Peter Pan, a boy who loves to pretend and is intent on never becoming a man, James decides he could try being a child – at least briefly. James joins Peter Pan on a holiday to Neverland, a place of adventure created by children’s dreams, but Neverland is not for the faint of heart. Soon James finds himself longing for home, determined that he is destined to be a man. But Peter refuses to take him back, leaving James trapped in a world just beyond the one he loves. A world where children are to never grow up.
But grow up he does.
And thus begins the epic adventure of a Lost Boy and a Pirate.
This story isn’t about Peter Pan; it’s about the boy whose life he stole. It’s about a man in a world that hates men. It’s about the feared Captain James Hook and his passionate quest to kill the Pan, an impossible feat in a magical land where everyone loves Peter Pan.
The best part about this Peter Pan retelling is that the main character is Captain James Hook. I enjoy reading from the villain’s perspective, especially when the author can get the reader to sympathize with the villain. I truly felt sad for Hook being stuck in Neverland when all he wanted was to return back to London after a couple weeks. In this Peter Pan is more of a villain than Hook is, and it’s Pan’s actions that result in Hook’s becoming vengeful.
If you’ve read the original tale of Peter Pan, then this retelling is perhaps the closest to that concept in the sense that Pan comes off as more villainous. Personally, I enjoyed this retelling. It was painted over all lovely with sprinkles like Disney’s version of Peter Pan. There was no holding back from the ugly. Overall rating on goodreads: 3.5 out of 5 stars, but I’ll round it up to 4 stars.