Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Peter Pan

I just finished reading Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie. I might have seen the Disney film as a child, but I don't remember. I figured it would be a fun little book to have on the shelf for my kids to pick up when they're ready to start really reading. So this was my first real venture into the world of Neverland. And reading it as a father and an adult may have made me miss the point.

I'm not sure what to think of the book.

It was written in the most fascinating fashion. Barrie often breaks the 4th wall or whatever by letting us in on his thought process as he tells the story. Feels like we're reading his notes. Sometimes the book is completely fantastical, but other times it's a step away from horrific. For all the grand fairytale of it, there is quite a lot of violence. The children in Neverland are never safe. And they are often fighting. And killing!
by Giacobino

Peter Pan, the character, is not the protagonist. I submit he's not even a good guy. He cannot see anything beyond himself. Tinkerbell is far different than the friendly Disney portrayal. She was jealous, vulgar, childish, and dangerous. I don't recall anything positive she said or did save one. She did give her life for Peter. And I guess that's everything.

The "reality" of Neverland is quite whimsical and rather untrustworthy. However, when we see the parents reaction to the kid's prolonged absence, things aren't much more normal at home. Heck, even before they left they were being raised by a dog!


by Giacobino

I love how the author recognizes the despicableness of his own protagonists by referring to them as selfish children.

by Giacobino

by Giacobino

by Giacobino

by Giacobino


Images of my own kids flying away for hundreds of days on end leaves me with negative emotions. I sense themes throughout the book that mirror Lord of the Flies, though, I'm not sure that was intended. Perhaps it's my own jaded grown-upness talking here, but I was a bit uncomfortable with the evident sexual themes throughout the book.

by Giacobino


An interesting read. Not sure I'll keep it on our shelf.

by Giacobino

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