Peter v. Harry

Over this nice long labor day weekend I got to catch up on some of my YA reading. I’ve discovered that for long vacations I like to take along a novel or a lively piece of non-fiction, but for three days it’s nice to be able to zip through a book and still read good fiction

So here, I’ve got a mini review of Peter and the Shadow Thieves, by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson.

This is the second in a series of books about the infamous Peter Pan. If you didn’t catch the first book Peter and the Starcatchers, you should start there and then move on to the second. The first book creates the back story to Peter and his troupe of Lost Boys. It’s a fantastic high seas adventure with just the right amount of fantasy and mystery, while explaining how Peter got his powers and why he doesn’t grow old. (spoiler) Turns out that Peter was doused in a magical substance called “starstuff” a kind of radioactive, magical cosmic dust that is extremely powerful. Peter’s story is like a story you might read in a comic book, like anther Peter I know who got bitten by a radio active spider.

The second book is about how Peter learns to handle his new super powers (with great power comes great responsibility). A large about of the starstuff has been collected and needs to be returned to the heavens. There’s a secret society of Starcatchers who’s job it is to collect and return the stuff. The Starcatchers have to return the treasure chest of starstuff before the evil, dark, and really feak’n scary guys get to it.

I love that this books are co-authored by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. As you read you can imagine Dave tossing in the jokes and Ridley countering with another dark turn of events. The balance of humor and darkness is well balanced and makes for great reading. I have to say that I’m more fond of the first book, mostly because it’s got more pirate adventure, but the second book takes Peter all across London and eventually to Stonehenge. The story also deals with Peter’s new abilities. Like any good superhero, he’s learning what it means to never grow old and how to use his powers responsibly. I know it sounds just like another boy with magical powers, but trust me, Peter is way cooler than Harry.

So put down that brick of a wizard book you’ve been carting around and read something better.

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