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Thursday, August 27, 2015

Never Never by Brianna R. Shrum ARC Review

4.5/5 Stars
Details of the Book
Paperback ARC, 356 pages
Published by Spencer Hill Press
Publication Date: September 22nd, 2015
 Buy It: Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository |

Synopsis: James Hook is a child who only wants to grow up.

When he meets Peter Pan, a boy who loves to pretend and is intent on never becoming a man, James decides he could try being a child—at least briefly. James joins Peter Pan on a holiday to Neverland, a place of adventure created by children’s dreams, but Neverland is not for the faint of heart. Soon James finds himself longing for home, determined that he is destined to be a man. But Peter refuses to take him back, leaving James trapped in a world just beyond the one he loves. A world where children are to never grow up.

But grow up he does.

And thus begins the epic adventure of a Lost Boy and a Pirate.

This story isn’t about Peter Pan; it’s about the boy whose life he stole. It’s about a man in a world that hates men. It’s about the feared Captain James Hook and his passionate quest to kill the Pan, an impossible feat in a magical land where everyone loves Peter Pan.

Except one.

James has always wanted to grow up and become a man like his father. That is, until he meets Peter Pan, a magical boy who loves childhood and never wants to grow up. James finally decides to enjoy being young by taking a holiday to Neverland. This fantastical island is full of mermaids, fairies, pirates, and everything a child could ever want. However, when he starts missing his home and family, Peter refuses to bring him back to London, leaving him trapped. In Neverland, growing up is strictly forbidden, but James can’t seem to stop himself from doing it. Thus begins James’ long adventure of becoming a pirate, and his quest to kill Peter Pan.

Never Never is a beautifully written re-telling of Peter Pan, a story from Captain Hook’s perspective. From the moment I heard about a book written from the perspective of the cruel pirate, I was on board.  It really made me look at the fairy tale differently. I felt very connected to James, the pirates, and the lost boys who were kind to him when Peter wasn’t. Even though there was a lot of unnecessary violence, each death mattered and made a difference in the plot. I especially loved Tiger Lily, because she was clever and sarcastic. I would definitely recommend this book, especially for anyone who loves Peter Pan, Disney movies, or pirates.


1) I really enjoyed Brianna Shrum’s smooth writing style, which made this book a quick read. I totally wasn't expecting that because it's not a small book by any means.

2) All of the characters had well-rounded and distinct personalities, especially Tiger Lily, who was funny and spunky.

3) I loved the unique spin on the original story. Reading this really changed the way that I'll view the Peter Pan Disney movie, because the added depth and backstory for Hook has made me see the storyline from a different perspective. Overall, this book is what all re-tellings should strive to be!


1) This is more of a personal preference, but I felt like there was some unnecessary violence in this book. Otherwise, even while trying to nitpick, I couldn't come up with anything negative to say!

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) “I say”, said James. “Is that a clock?”

It was as though he’d just asked, “Is that a bomb?” or, “Is that a soul-eating crypt keeper coming our way?” For all the boys were in a flurry and panicking.

James frowned. “I did say ‘clock’, didn’t I?”

2) “Is there a time you’re not going to assault me upon meeting me?” She yelled.

James’s mouth fell open. Perhaps it was time he stop assuming that everyone in the vicinity was looking to murder him.”


  1. I haven't seen too many review for this . . . well I haven't looked either, but I'm definitely excited! I really love the idea of all the violence, (I need my villains to be super evil) and I'm so happy to hear that Shrum took the original story, and gave us something completely different. I should be reading this now buttttt, I'm distracted by The TOG series lmao.

    1. Yep, I'd definitely recommend it as soon as you get the chance to read it! I'm actually about to start reading the Throne of Glass series too

  2. I found about this book the other days, and I'm totally dying to read it! Thank you for this great review! Now I'm even more excited about it, can't wait to meet Jame's perspective on this one!

    ~L. @ Reading Against Time.

    1. Thanks :)! I really enjoyed Captain Hook's perspective on the story, and I would definitely recommend it.

  3. I'm so excited for this one. This reminds me a little of Once Upon a Time and their recreation of the Peter Pan story. I've always been a fan of Captain Hook, and it will be interesting to read from his side. I love when a character has an equal side of good and bad. :D

    Sarah @ The Reading Petal

    1. I agree, I've also always found Captain Hook interesting! Sometimes I find characters too forgiving and kind, and he wasn't.

  4. This is only the second review I've seen of this book, but I'm so excited for it! The cover is so pretty and it sounds so awesome! I am going crazy for retellings lately and this one sounds fantastic! I can't wait to pick this one up! Awesome review!

    1. Thank you :). I've also been reading a lot of retellings recently, and the first thing I noticed about Never, Never was the cover

  5. Glad to hear you enjoyed this one since I am really looking forward to it. Great review!

  6. By the sounds of it, this is literally one of the very FEW retellings that sound amazing to me.. I really want to read this.

    1. I recommend it! Never, Never came as a surprise to me, seeing as I haven't enjoyed a lot of the retellings I've read recently.