Book: “The Navigator” by Erin Michelle Sky and Steven Brown
Publishing Info: Trash Dogs Media, LLC, October 2019
Where Did I Get this Book: NetGalley
Book Description: Wendy’s troubles are far from over. Hook wants her in irons, the crew wants to throw her overboard, and Pan’s magical compass is the only thing standing in their way. But Pan himself is nowhere to be found.
When a new everlost captain appears on the horizon, it will take everything Wendy has to survive.
Previously Reviewed: “The Wendy”
Review: This is definitely an “under the radar” little fantasy series. I pretty much only strayed upon it after scrolling way, way into the backfiles on NetGalley. But man, I’m glad I did! I, obviously, love re-tellings, and “Peter Pan” is definitely one of the more rare ones, mostly because of how hard it is to get right, I think. But the first book definitely proved that the authors had a new take on the story, so I was really excited to pick up this sequel and see where things went from there!
Wendy has finally made it: she’s the navigator of a ship. Of course, no one but herself is very pleased about this fact and without the magical compass that only she can read, she’s fairly certain they would all toss her overboard at their first chance. But still. Challenges are still ahead, however. Not only must she continue to try to prove herself to this new crew, but loss and uncertainty await on the horizon as a war brews around her.
So, overall, most everything that I enjoyed from the first book continued on here. I love the twists and turns that the authors are bringing to a well-known story. There were several that took me quite by surprise. I was also pleased to see variations on other familiar characters make an appearance, like Tigerlija. It’s always fun to see new takes on characters like this, especially ones that had fairly minor roles in the original story (not to mention…um…questionable ones at that).
I also still really enjoy Wendy herself. Her story tackles a lot of emotional legwork with her struggles to gain the respect of her male crew. But she also doesn’t fall into all of the trope-y “strong woman” moments that can be seen everywhere. Instead, we see her have to become more vulnerable when confronted with unexpected losses that strike her where it hurts. She’s dealing with a war, after all, so I’m glad the authors didn’t shy away from the dangers and realities that that would present.
Hook and Pan, of course, are also still great characters. Hook’s POV chapters were especially interesting. It’s definitely a challenge to write chapters from the perspective of the villain of the story, but if done right, it can add many additional layers to the story and the interactions between characters. It’s hard not to like Hook, frankly.
Overall, I really liked this book. If you’ve read the first one, this is pretty much more of the same. Which, in this case, is not a criticism but a bonus! And if you haven’t read this series yet, but like “Peter Pan,” then I definitely recommend checking out these books. They deserve more attention than they’re getting!
Rating 8: Still a rollicking good time to be had here!
“The Navigator” isn’t on many Goodreads lists, but it is on this strange, little list Clean Peter Pan Retellings.
Find “The Navigator” at your library using WorldCat!