Hook's Daughter by Heidi Schulz
|Hook's Daughter by Heidi Schulz|
|Category: Confident Readers|
|Reviewer: Robert James|
|Summary: A bland sequel to Peter Pan, which doesn't reach the heights of other recent pirate stories.|
|Buy? No||Borrow? Maybe|
|Pages: 288||Date: March 2015|
|Publisher: Chicken House|
|External links: Author's website|
Captain Hook's daughter, Jocelyn, dreams of being a pirate like her infamous father, but instead gets sent to finishing school. Sailing to Neverland after escaping, she swears revenge on the crocodile that killed the notorious pirate, but is saddled with a crew who perhaps aren't the most bloodthirsty pirates on the seven seas, then meets up with several characters who'll be familiar to readers of Peter Pan. Can she fulfil her quest?
I love pirates, I love magic, and I love retellings and sequels to classic books, so this Peter Pan-inspired story seemed to be ticking all of my boxes. Sadly, I was really disappointed in it. Jocelyn isn't an interesting enough lead to carry this story - her quest for revenge over the crocodile is a great goal, but I didn't care about her enough to be particularly bothered by whether she achieved it. (Having said that, there's a stand-out scene when she demonstrates an awesome method of dealing with cannibals.) Meanwhile Peter Pan isn't around as much as I'd have expected, the supporting cast are thin and boring, and the old pirate who acts as narrator, constantly grumbling that he doesn't want to be telling the story, starts off as a clever device but quickly becomes annoying.
The plot isn't exactly bad, but it does feel formulaic, especially if you're reasonably familiar with the original story. It also takes a fair while to get going properly, with Jocelyn being in school doing nothing much interesting for quite a chunk of the early stages. I don't think it helps that two of my favourite reads for this age range last year, The Very Nearly Honourable League of Pirates: Magic Marks the Spot by Caroline Carlson and The Map to Everywhere by Carrie Ryan and John Parke Davis, managed to mix piracy and magic to much more of an enjoyable effect, with real originality and great voices in both of them, and that both seemed much quicker-paced than this one does.
Overall, this is serviceable, but given the amount of great books out there for the age range, I can't particularly recommend it.
As mentioned above, The Very Nearly Honourable League of Pirates: Magic Marks the Spot by Caroline Carlson and The Map to Everywhere by Carrie Ryan and John Parke Davis, are superb.
You can read more book reviews or buy Hook's Daughter by Heidi Schulz at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy Hook's Daughter by Heidi Schulz at Amazon.com.
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