Fifteen-year-old Tiger Lily doesn’t believe in love stories or happy endings. Then she meets the alluring teenage Peter Pan in the forbidden woods of Neverland and immediately falls under his spell…
Take the beautiful, imaginary world of Neverland and make it a literal place where everything is messy and covered in dirt and that is the uninteresting world where Tiger Lily is set. I didn’t think it was possible to make Neverland so completely boring. A few magical elements remain like fairies and mermaids but they felt very flat and unoriginal. There’s also a poorly explained excuse for why some people get old and some people don’t. If you’re curious the reason some people don’t get old is because it just happens when something important happens in your life for no logical reason whatsoever.
The plot felt very been there done that in the way that Avatar was. It’s kind of a tired plot line to have new people come and mess everything up for the indigenous people. I also felt like there was nothing new or interesting added to this retelling of Peter Pan. I personally like my retellings to have new twists otherwise what is the point of the retelling? I’m not really sure what the overall conflict even was. It felt like the plot just kind of dragged along with an ending that kind of baffled me. Honestly, the whole book felt a little preachy. There were a few cute scenes between Peter Pan and Tiger Lily but not enough to make me really love this book.
The writing was good though it wasn’t my favorite. The word choice stood out to me sometimes and felt a little awkward here and there like it was trying too hard to be poetic or something, but there were a few quotes I really liked. Like this one:
“I’m not myself,” [Tiger Lily] offered, guilty. . . .
“You can never say that. You’re just a piece of yourself right now that you don’t like.”
-Jodi Lynn Anderson, Tiger Lily (p. 69)
My favorite character by far was Smee who sadly shows up in the book only a few times. The rest of the characters I had a hard time connecting with, especially Tiger Lily and the very strange decision she makes at the end of the book. I honestly found it hard to tell some of the characters apart.
Overall, I did not enjoy the world building in this book at all. It had a tired plot line with a cast of characters that I ended up not caring much about.
Content Rating: Medium, for some violence and non-graphic instances of rape and abuse.