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Unhooked

by Lisa Maxwell

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2721380,176 (3.41)2
From "talented wordsmith" (Publishers Weekly) Lisa Maxwell comes a lush, atmospheric fantasy novel filled with twists and turns about a girl who is kidnapped and brought to an island inhabited by fairies, a roguish ship captain, and bloodthirsty beasts. For as long as she can remember, Gwendolyn Allister has never had a place to call home. Her mother believes they are being hunted by brutal monsters, and those delusions have brought them to London, far from the life Gwen had finally started to build for herself. Gwen's only saving grace is that her best friend, Olivia, is with her for the summer. But shortly after their arrival, the girls are kidnapped by shadowy creatures and dragged into a world of flesh-eating sea hags and dangerous Fey. And Gwen begins to realize that maybe her mother isn't so crazy after all... Gwen discovers that this new world she inhabits is called Neverland, but it's nothing like the Neverland you've heard about in stories. Here, good and evil lose their meaning and memories slip like water through your fingers. As Gwen struggles to remember where she came from and tries to find a way home, she must choose between trusting the charming fairy-tale hero who says all the right things and the captivating pirate who promises to keep her safe. Caught in the ultimate battle between good and evil, with time running out and her enemies closing in, Gwen is forced to finally face the truths she's been hiding from all along. But can she save Neverland without losing herself?… (more)
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Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
This is really a 3.5 star. (Goodreads, seriously when are you gonna get on that?). I enjoyed reading it, and I definitely wouldn't hesitate to recommended it. I loved how Neverland was dangerous and eerie. And the forgetting played such a big part. But... I'm very picky about my Peter Pan narratives, and this ended up feeling a bit too much like a YA romance with a Neverland backdrop for me. Not bad, just not really my thing and not what I'm looking for in a Pan retelling. ( )
  banrions | Dec 7, 2021 |
I didn't realize this was a Neverland retelling :>

and if the word "pirate" is even mentioned the synopsis it's automatically added to my TBR pile

  themoonwholistens | Aug 31, 2020 |
OMG - this tale was absolutely one of my favorites to date. I have urged many of my students to read this tale! Hoping for a sequel n this Dark, murderous even frightening tale of a twisted form of the children's tale that I knew so well, well enough till this tale came about. I cannot give enough praise of this book and tale. Mrs. Maxwell, Please create more books! Coming from a 6th grade teacher, my students are on a waiting list through out the summer to get a hold of this book from me.! ( )
  MrNattania72 | Mar 17, 2020 |
3.5 Stars
Unhooked is a darker retelling of Peter Pan with some fantastic world-building and characterization. I have to say though..Captain Hook (Rowan) was my favorite of them all and I couldn't help but picture Colin O'Donoghue while I was reading. I mean, he does make a perfect Hook.
What I liked: No love triangle, the portrayal of Neverland, Hook and the story in general.
What I didn't like: The ending. The epilogue was fine but the events leading up to the ending just felt too rushed.

Overall, I had fun reading Unhooked and would recommend it for those who enjoy twisted retellings of classic fairytales.

( )
  maebri | Mar 10, 2020 |
Well. This was certainly an interesting take on Neverland. How many times have we pondered the tale of Peter Pan? What would it be like to stay joyful and young forever? At first it would seem wonderful; life would be stress-free and every day would be an adventure. But on the downside, Neverland is an unpredictable place, and with unpredictability comes danger. This book explores that downside, making it an area of longing, instinct, and, yes--danger. Much, much danger.

The Captain, of course, was more complex than Captain Hook of Peter Pan. He was, in one way, a villain. He'd killed many people, including those he loved, and he was Pan's enemy. But he had no harmful intentions in general (at least not directly), so he was more of a hero. And he had loads of internal conflict about his brother and his home--poor him. I really liked his character, especially towards the end. But as for the end itself...I was conflicted. On one hand, I was glad that Rowan and Gwen were able to stay together. On the other hand, I was unsure about Rowan being suddenly taken from the place he's (however reluctantly) accepted as "home". But since the real world was his original home in the first place, and he's come to adapt a bit at the very end, I suppose I'm okay with it.

But Gwen, the main character, was just as fascinating. It wasn't so much her personality as it was who she was. The whole history of her parents and grandparents was pretty interesting, but the combination of Light and Dark in her was most interesting. And the part when she embraced her dark side. Oh, the irony that Dark is actually more friendly than Light. It was a nice break from the commonly accepted fact, "Light is good! Dark is evil!". Nope, not in this case.

One thing that didn't amaze me, though, was the basic plot. It was just, girl is secret powerful heir, has to free the Queen, and endures some hardships along the way. It wasn't horrible; just a bit plain. But it was overall entertaining.

Even though this didn't really dazzle me all the way to my favorites shelf, I still recommend it! It has many interesting ideas and detail, and I think fans of retellings and fantasy would enjoy it. ( )
  KendraJ. | Dec 10, 2019 |
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From "talented wordsmith" (Publishers Weekly) Lisa Maxwell comes a lush, atmospheric fantasy novel filled with twists and turns about a girl who is kidnapped and brought to an island inhabited by fairies, a roguish ship captain, and bloodthirsty beasts. For as long as she can remember, Gwendolyn Allister has never had a place to call home. Her mother believes they are being hunted by brutal monsters, and those delusions have brought them to London, far from the life Gwen had finally started to build for herself. Gwen's only saving grace is that her best friend, Olivia, is with her for the summer. But shortly after their arrival, the girls are kidnapped by shadowy creatures and dragged into a world of flesh-eating sea hags and dangerous Fey. And Gwen begins to realize that maybe her mother isn't so crazy after all... Gwen discovers that this new world she inhabits is called Neverland, but it's nothing like the Neverland you've heard about in stories. Here, good and evil lose their meaning and memories slip like water through your fingers. As Gwen struggles to remember where she came from and tries to find a way home, she must choose between trusting the charming fairy-tale hero who says all the right things and the captivating pirate who promises to keep her safe. Caught in the ultimate battle between good and evil, with time running out and her enemies closing in, Gwen is forced to finally face the truths she's been hiding from all along. But can she save Neverland without losing herself?

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