Before Peter Pan belonged to Wendy, he belonged to the girl with the crow feather in her hair. 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. Peter is unlike anyone she's ever known. Impetuous and brave, he both scares and enthralls her. As the leader of the Lost Boys, the most fearsome of Neverland's inhabitants, Peter is an unthinkable match for Tiger Lily. Soon, she is risking everything—her family, her future—to be with him. When she is faced with marriage to a terrible man in her own tribe, she must choose between the life she's always known and running away to an uncertain future with Peter. With enemies threatening to tear them apart, the lovers seem doomed. But it's the arrival of Wendy Darling, an English girl who's everything Tiger Lily is not, that leads Tiger Lily to discover that the most dangerous enemies can live inside even the most loyal and loving heart.
(Picture and synopsis from Goodreads)
Natalie: As you may have guessed, we really like pretty covers.
Hannah: And the cover of Tiger Lily is another cover that we really like. So that means we are going to squeal about it, and Natalie is going to stroke the book. Because Natalie tends to stroke books with pretty covers.
Natalie: I can't help it! They're pretty!
*insert squealing here*
Hannah: Moving on to the words in the book.
Natalie: So this book was a retelling of Peter Pan. It was told from Tinker Bell's point of view, which I thought with really cool and interesting.
Hannah: I liked how the Tink started out narrating pretty objectively, but then she because more biased as the story went on and she became more involved with Tiger Lily and Peter Pan and everything.
Natalie: The story took popular characters and gave them more depth than the animated Disney versions.
Hannah: A character that wasn't my favorite was Tiger Lily. She could be so mean to poor Pine Sap. I mean, hasn't Pine Sap suffered enough with a name like Pine Sap?
Natalie: I felt like she was trying so hard to be strong and tough that she came across as detached at some points.
Hannah: This is an awkward transition, but it's next chronologically in our post it note markings... So I liked how Peter Pan's spelling was very Winnie-the-Pooh. For example: "IN MEMRY OF THE STRANJER".
Natalie: Going back to characters, it was cool to learn the story of how Hook got his hook.
Hannah: The backstories to Hook's hook and the alligator's clock and the Lost Boys and stuff were really neat. It was one of my favorite parts of the retelling.
Another random aside--the evil mermaids were totally like the merpeople in Harry Potter. (Natalie and I are obsessed with Harry Potter).
Natalie: I liked the romance between Peter Pan and Tiger Lily, but in the beginning it was rushed and kind of came out of nowhere. (And this isn't a spoiler--the back of the book says that PP is a match for TL and they have a bond.)
But this part is a spoiler so if you don't want to be spoiled...
The part when Peter killed one of the pirates was kind of a reality check. This book isn't the rainbows and unicorns tale that the Disney movie told. It's dark and gritty, but that's what makes it so good.
...skip to here!
Hannah: I liked reading about the Sky Eaters, Tiger Lily's tribe. The details about their life were really interesting. My favorite part was how they watched every sunset and remembered them all.
Natalie: Another annoyance I had with Tiger Lily was that she wasn't very logical sometimes. She was unhappy with the Sky Eaters, but when opportunities arose for her to change her situation, she didn't take them.
Hannah: (and Natalie, too) We kinda hate Wendy. That's all.
Natalie: The ending was so powerful for me (I can't say anything else about it because that would spoil it and apparently we're not spoiling anything now). The last page literally had me in tears, which hasn't happened since I read The Fault in Our Stars.
Hannah: Tiger Lily was really good. I liked the backstories and Tink's narration, but Tiger Lily was kind of an annoying character. Tiger Lily also could have been a bit more interesting, especially since the book was called Tiger Lily.
Natalie: I absolutely loved Tiger Lily. It was such a lush, dark retelling of one of my favorite "fairy tales." The writing was outstanding and so interesting to read. There was such a great cast of characters that were developed through out the story. And I think Hannah is crazy for only giving it 3 stars.
Random Side Note: Jodi Lynn Anderson also wrote May Bird and the Ever After, which Natalie reviewed six-ish years ago for summer newspaper writing camp that we both went to. (Hannah wrote about the possible-planet-object that caused Pluto to be, in Natalie's words, kicked out of the solar system.)