The best thing ever is retelling a story everyone knows in a new, awesome way. Suddenly, a story we all love becomes fresh again, with major nods to the original story. Wendy Spinale understood this well, clearly. She decided to retell the story of Peter Pan in her latest novel, Everland.
This steampunk, dystopian novel is everything you’ve ever wanted. Featuring glimpses of the original story, and even some of the original lines, Spinale created a story in a dystopian London, riddled with bombs and disease. The Horologia has virus spread and killed off many people.
But Gwen, Joanna, and Mikey Darling trek on, scavenging at night and avoiding Captain Hook’s Maurader’s during the day. That is until Joanna gets caught by the Maurader’s.
Hellbent on finding a cure, Captain Hook believes the key is to be found in one of the survivors who lurk around London. Unsure if the Horologia virus has spread beyond England, Hook persists and captures kids as a means to an end. Joanna, his latest victim, turns out to be the most conflicting kidnap, however, since Gwen joins forces with Pete and his gang of Lost Boys.
Peter Pan is, and forever will be, a classic story, enjoyed by both kids, and adults. It’s marked a significant rite of passage for many generations. The pressure to deliver on a retelling must have been huge for Wendy Spinale. But she delivered! Leave it up to a former Disney actress to retell Peter Pan in the best of ways.
The reason that Everland works is because it’s the perfect balance of old and new. It doesn’t try to change everything about J.M. Barrie’s story, it simply changes the details. The bone structure of the original story we all know and love is very much still there.
Furthermore, it’s nice to see London be the setting, once again. Only, rather than just be Industrial, it’s Steampunk, the fictional version of Industrialism. It amplifies the story, enhancing the fantasy and magic behind the characters.
Not to sound love-struck by this novel, but finding cons was rather difficult. The main one we can think of is how the story alternates between two main perspectives: Captain Hook’s and Gwen’s. It makes sense because they end up being the two main characters. Gwen is the sole cure for the virus, being immune to it. Hook seeks a cure, so he can leave England. It sets the stage, and by alternating the POV, you get the best of both worlds.
The bone to pick here is that Pete falls behind. And what is the original story about? What is the name? It would have been nice to see Peter Pan’s POV in the story, but we understand why it wasn’t incorporated. Makes sense, but still!
Our Final Verdict
We love this book, and we suggest you go out and purchase a copy right away. Everland is a treat to read, exhilarating and awesome with every passing page. It’s new and old, simultaneously. By making it steampunk, it adds yet another layer of magic.
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