Unhooked by Lisa Maxwell
For as long as she can remember, Gwendolyn Allister has never had a place to call home—all because her mother believes that monsters are hunting them. Now these delusions have brought them to London, far from the life Gwen had finally started to build for herself. The only saving grace is her best friend, Olivia, who’s coming with them for the summer.
But when Gwen and Olivia are kidnapped by shadowy creatures and taken to a world of flesh-eating sea hags and dangerous Fey, Gwen realizes her mom might have been sane all along.
The world Gwen finds herself in is called Neverland, yet it’s nothing like the stories. Here, good and evil lose their meaning and memories slip like water through her fingers. As Gwen struggles to remember where she came from and find a way home, she must choose between trusting the charming fairy-tale hero who says all the right things and the roguish young pirate who promises to keep her safe.
With time running out and her enemies closing in, Gwen is forced to face the truths she’s been hiding from all along. But will she be able to save Neverland without losing herself?
Hopefully none of you will hate me, when I say, that I've never liked the Disney version of Peter Pan. It was a little annoying and when I was a child I didn't like pointy ears on anyone. Needless to say, my take on point ears changed once I set eyes on Orlando Bloom as Legolas in Lord of the Rings. Anyway!
It took me a little while to finally get to this read on my TBR for two reasons. One, I was in a huge reading slump and two, I was scared to read a retelling (yes, this is my first retelling! I know, right?). As I got older, I felt that Fairy Tales were of the past, until I realized, that um... they're not! I finally picked up Unhooked and read almost the entire thing in a day! Stupid bed times, for stupid work :/
I loved how the story took off, in a more gloomy setting of London, preparing the way for a more unique way of telling a Peter Pan story. It completely grabbed my attention because it wasn't your childhood fairy tale anymore. It was a twisted version. Some might say, a twisted and dark version? I might say that haha! And who doesn't like a twisted version of your classic fairy tale novel?
Our main protagonist, Gwendolyn, is not your typical Wendy either. She is curious and spunky. She's ready to investigate and question things, which is my kind of character. I don't like reading about young women who go with the flow of things, I have to do that myself enough of the time. And the other characters of Neverland? Well, they're not who you might expect them to be either.
In a Neverland where good was once bad and bad is now good, it's easy to feel that you are a bit turned around. A dashingly handsome pirate will definitely make you swoon more than you would expect to, especially with his dark secrets and young Peter, well, Peter will draw you in, every moment he can, with that devilishly grin and boyish charm. The twists and turns in this book will have you second guessing your second guesses!!! But don't fret, because Maxwell wraps it all up in such a way that will make you love her for every minute of this exceptional retelling of your favorite flying Pan and infamous captain.