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October 31, 2017

Halloween Reads Part 3 - Lost Boy by Christina Henry

by Elisabeth Scherer

Happy Halloween Folks!  Today I'm concluding my review of Christina Henry novels with Lost Boy.  It is by far my favorite of her books and perfect for a spooky read while gorging on Halloween candy (be it your own or your kids).
Lost Boy by Christina Henry
July 2017; Ace; 978-0399584022
ebook, audio, print (292 pages)
Fantasy, Adult, Horror, Retelling

Lost Boy is a novel about the origins of Captain James Hook from the Peter Pan world.

Here is the excerpt from the back cover:

There is one version of my story that everyone knows. And then there is the truth. This is how it happened. How I went from being Peter Pan’s first—and favorite—lost boy to his greatest enemy. 

Peter brought me to his island because there were no rules and no grownups to make us mind. He brought boys from the Other Place to join in the fun, but Peter's idea of fun is sharper than a pirate’s sword. Because it’s never been all fun and games on the island. Our neighbors are pirates and monsters. Our toys are knife and stick and rock—the kinds of playthings that bite.
Peter promised we would all be young and happy forever.

This book is in the same line with Alice and Red Queen where the world is very harsh and scary. Jamie (James Cook) tells the story of how he became the nemesis to Peter Pan. At one time they were very close. Jamie was the first boy Peter brought to the island. Then they brought more boys with the lure of staying young forever and doing what they want. However, Peter never seemed to take much notice of the injured, sick, or dead. Jamie was left to care for the boys and bury the dead. Over time Jamie began to see Peter in a different light.

This book is violent and cruel, there are pirates and sharks, and monsters. It is another book that is not for the faint of heart. People die, young boys die, and Peter doesn't seem to care. The main character is forced to face things that kids shouldn't face. The concept behind the book is wonderful. I love that you could put this right down into the canon of Peter Pan's world and it makes absolute sense. It's very much in the realm of The Hunger Games when it comes to kids battling and facing mortality around them. The characters are believable and Jamie is a character that readers will identify with and hope for the best. It will make you rethink your view on Captain Hook, Peter Pan, and Tinkerbell. The action and pacing in the book pick up quickly and is a juggernaut hurling you through to the final pages.

This twisted coming of age story hits all the right notes for a clever idea brought to paper.  Jamie has to decide if he wants to ignore the realities of life on the island or if he must face his future and grow up and away from his beloved friend Peter. It is gritty and dark and is just what I was looking for when thinking about reading something around Halloween.

Buy Lost Boy at Amazon
Elisabeth Scherer grew up in a very small town in Minnesota but now lives in the lovely Pacific Northwest where she spends most of her time raising her two young children. She and her husband have a large collection of books that takes a good space of their small condo. When she's not reading she has a variety of hobbies that include crocheting, drawing, baking, cooking, and movie watching. She is currently obsessed with making French Macarons and other baked deliciousness! You can also find her blogging at

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  1. It's so interesting to see how many reinterpretations and origin tales come from Peter Pan. I've read a Tiger Lily story and I've seen at least one other Captain Hook origin story.

    Glad you enjoyed this one!