This week I couldn’t put down Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. The book serves as a prequel to Peter Pan, who at the time is an orphan without a last name. Peter and the other orphan boys are sent aboard a ship named the Wasp, to go to Rundoon and serve the evil King Zarboff, the third. During their journey, Peter sneaks out of the boys’ quarters to attempt to find real food for them to eat. Along the way he makes a new friend named Molly, who is an apprentice and descends from a long line of Starcatchers. Molly is traveling separate from her father and guarding a magical trunk aboard their ship which is to be delivered to the Queen. Peter and the Starcatchers is a mystical page turning adventure involving familiar characters such as the pirates Black Stache and Smee, Captain and first mate aboard the Jolly Roger, the most terrifying pirate ship in the sea. As more sailors become privy to the magic withheld inside the trunk, chaos ensues on the high seas and five separate parties (Slank and Little Richard, Black Stache and Smee, Peter and Molly, the mermaids, and once they hit land, the Mollusks) battle each other to acquire the trunk.
If you have an affinity for the story of Peter Pan, you will fall deeply in love with Peter and the Starcatchers. It’s wonderful to read the events which shaped Peter into the legend he is today. You also learn about the origin of the Lost Boys, Tinkerbell, the mermaids, and Mr. Grin, the crocodile. The story is rich with easter eggs its fast paced narrative instantly engages the reader. I often found myself saying I would read “just one more page,” before I put it down, but in actuality I would end up reading twenty to forty more pages. I loved the story so much that after completing the novel I felt compelled to look further into Peter and the Starcatchers online. I had already known about the off-Broadway play in New York (which I’m going to force someone to take me to on my birthday), but I also discovered that Disney is planning on turning the book into a film. They’ve already employed Gary Ross (The Hunger Games) to direct, and I’m really looking forward to seeing the finished product.
Peter and the Starcatchers is the first book in a four book series, and you can order a copy from Amazon.