Book one for #allthebookreviews was LOST BOY: THE TRUE STORY OF CAPTAIN HOOK by Christina Henry – out now!!
Chandra and I are fans of retellings and origins stories, so the origin of Captain Hook with a dark, twisty, horror feel was right up our alley!
Chandra’s Thoughts: 5/5 stars
Everybody knows Peter Pan’s story. But do you know Captain Hook’s? Everyone believes Peter but Peter lies. Enticing boys to the island with no rules, no grown ups and a promise of fun all the time, they are nothing but mere pawns in his on going game. The first boy, he ever took? Jamie who is later known as Captain Hook. As Lord of the Flies takes over Peter’s Island, all the children either grow up or die… except one.
Peter Pan is such an asshole.
I always thought he was an evil, selfish little shit. And he IS! And I like it! I always tend to veer towards the antagonist or empathize with the characters on the wrong side of everything. Christina Henry took Peter Pan to a dark place and I loved every minute of it. I’ve never been too much of a fan of retellings. I’m probably vastly in the minority of not loving the Lunar Chronicles or Dorothy Must Die series. I can appreciate different views though as aren’t most tales not so happily ever after? This is not so much a retelling, as it is an origins novel about an understated evil character from our basic Peter Pan story. She takes Jamie/Hook’s story line to complement Peter Pan’s, but in such a way that they are linear and we get his view on how they became such bitter enemies when they used to be the best of friends. Lovers of Peter Pan, or any type of fantasy fairy tale, will likely fall in love with this book. It’s definitely darker than I had expected it to be and there are some graphic scenes I wasn’t expecting…. and I found that delightful. Full five stars for finally giving me a book like this that I love.
My Thoughts: 5/5 stars
In a world full of fairy tales and happily ever afters, it’s always refreshing to read a retelling that has a dark side. LOST BOY: THE TRUE STORY OF CAPTAIN HOOK by Christina Henry definitely fit the bill and I loved every creepy, eerie, and scary moment of it. The entire story was just cloaked in darkness. If you love Peter Pan…well, let’s just say you won’t after reading this retelling.
Jamie is our narrator for the entirety of the book, and we get to see from the perspective of a boy who has been there from the beginning. The story we all know and love about Peter Pan is far from the truth. The promise of never growing up, adventures, and endless fun are how Peter lures his new play things to his island and away from The Other Place. In reality, the island was full of nothing but darkness, death, and danger – in the form of the pirates that Peter taunts, and the Many-Eyed, just one of the monsters that inhabit the island (their entire chapter gave me the CREEPS).
I don’t want to give away too much of the story. It’s an adventure all its own and I would hate to ruin it. Jamie – who will later become Captain Hook – is slowly beginning to see Peter for what he really is and because of this the wonder and love is wearing off. Jamie is slowly beginning to grow up as he learns new things about his friend.
With new boys being brought to the island by Peter, Jamie learns the hard way that caring for and watching over them is a bad idea. Peter will go to extreme and twisted lengths to keep Jamie all for himself. We quickly learn that everything Peter does is just to keep Jamie as his friend and play thing – and he does NOT like to share.
If you want a great retelling with a slasher movie twist, then you need this one! Not only will you love Captain Hook, but your love for Peter Pan might disappear with this one! Henry did an incredible job setting the scene, developing the characters, and building a story so that the reader’s rose tinted glasses are taken off so we can see the real Peter Pan.
This was a phenomenal start to July! Let’s hope the momentum keeps up 🙂
Thank you to Berkley Publishing for the advanced copies of this book in exchange for our honest reviews!