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The Child Thief: A Novel (2009)

by Brom (Author, illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,3936513,691 (4)91
Fantasy. Fiction. Horror. Mythology. HTML:

The acclaimed artist Brom brilliantly displays his multiple extraordinary talents in The Child Thief—a spellbinding re-imagining of the beloved Peter Pan story that carries readers through the perilous mist separating our world from the realm of Faerie. As Gregory Maguire did with his New York Times bestselling Wicked novels, Brom takes a classic children's tale and turns it inside-out, painting a Neverland that, like Maguire's Oz, is darker, richer, more complex than innocent world J.M. Barrie originally conceived. An ingeniously executed literary feat, illustrated with Brom's sumptuous artwork, The Child Thief is contemporary fantasy at its finest—casting Peter Pan, the Lost Boys, even Captain Hook and his crew in a breathtaking new light.

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» See also 91 mentions

English (62)  German (3)  All languages (65)
Showing 1-5 of 62 (next | show all)
I really wanted to like this book. I has faeries! Peter Pan! An adult spin! But really, it was a hollow echo of a much better work, and I was severely disappointed.

Brom's writing is choppy, his editor ought to be spanked for not taking a firmer hand in the formatting. It was a huge turn off. That alone shaves a star off the rating. Miserable set up makes for unhappy reading.

The characters were shallow and lacked much personality. The mishmash of religion, abuse, myth was hamhanded. Worst of all, the complete lack of resolution of the central character's conflict - that'd be Nick, not Peter - is terrible storytelling and I can't believe that this is a third novel, instead of a 'could have used a stronger editor' first attempt!

It is a book to avoid unless you are REALLY that desperate for a new take on Peter Pan. Brom's a fantastic artist, but his fiction is not, sadly, worth reading. Maybe his other works are better -- but this one is a total pass unless you like poorly formatted stories wherein the protagonist does whatever he wants, and only the people around him suffer for it -- and somehow, you're supposed to be happy at his personal validation of all the horrible things he did at the end of the book.

Sorry, just not interested. ( )
  crowsandprose | May 15, 2024 |
Peter Pan couldn't get any darker than this--definitely NOT for the kiddies and no way is this a YA. The Child Thief also straddles the line between Fantasy and Horror, but remains mainly in Fantasy.

This book pulls you in with the 1st chapter. I was so horrified by it in the sample I downloaded to my Kindle that of course, I immediately went to purchase; I didn't even bother to read the rest of the sample.

There was little in this book that I anticipated before hand, unfortunately, what I did anticipate were large plot elements. While this didn't take away any enjoyment of the book for me, it might for some. Other elements were totally surprises. This is not a good guys against bad guys book although when bad, the bad guys are baad. And the good guys are never just good.

At every crossroads, be assured that the author took the opportunity to take turns down the dark road. If I had to think about that prior to reading, I would guess that it would make for a depressing book. And while some parts of the book are depressing, there was always a tiny thread of hope; after all, we were in the mind of Peter Pan. And whatever else that he is, he is the eternal child.



( )
  jazzbird61 | Feb 29, 2024 |
4.5 stars. Video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAZr1hlyMxQ ( )
  VanessaMarieBooks | Dec 10, 2023 |
The unnecessary gore and violence could be overlooked if the characters were more consistent. ( )
  bookwyrmm | May 25, 2023 |
The blurbs about The Child Thief describe it as a dark re-imagining of the classic children’s tale of Peter Pan. This is true as far as it goes, but distinctly understated. Brom’s version dials the Dark up to eleven. He takes the story of Peter the Puer Aeternus, adds the Fae and a great deal of Celtic mythology, a group of puritan settlers turned monster, and throws in a large glug of Lord of the Flies and cooks it all up into an entertainingly nightmarish story, ably accented by his artwork.

I like dark re-imaginings of fairy tales and such, and enjoyed this one. But I found I had to consume it slowly, in rather small bites. ( )
  Ailurophile | Feb 27, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 62 (next | show all)
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This one is for John Fearing.
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It would happen again tonight: the really bad thing.
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Fantasy. Fiction. Horror. Mythology. HTML:

The acclaimed artist Brom brilliantly displays his multiple extraordinary talents in The Child Thief—a spellbinding re-imagining of the beloved Peter Pan story that carries readers through the perilous mist separating our world from the realm of Faerie. As Gregory Maguire did with his New York Times bestselling Wicked novels, Brom takes a classic children's tale and turns it inside-out, painting a Neverland that, like Maguire's Oz, is darker, richer, more complex than innocent world J.M. Barrie originally conceived. An ingeniously executed literary feat, illustrated with Brom's sumptuous artwork, The Child Thief is contemporary fantasy at its finest—casting Peter Pan, the Lost Boys, even Captain Hook and his crew in a breathtaking new light.

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