[If you missed my post about Peter Pan last summer, you can find it here: "Make This the Summer You Read Aloud J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan".]
This story is delightful for children and adults alike. Throughout the book, the omniscient narrator interjects many humorous asides and explanations to the reader - apparently Barrie's attempt to remind us adults, who surely have lost touch with our childhood imaginations, about the inborn behavior of children. But I think he also wants to admonish children to appreciate their carefree youth while they have it. Young children may not fully grasp the meaning of what is discussed throughout the novel, but they will love the adventures of Peter, Wendy, John and Michael.
The story of Peter Pan has always been special to our family. My dad (Peter) fondly remembers as a boy being taken to see the play, starring Mary Martin. My own daughter became a fan of the story as an eighth grader when she read the illustrated edition (pictured above) for the first time. And she was thrilled when she was given the dance (and flying!!!) role of "Peter" for her ballet studio's production. Then there's my nephew, Peter who cried because the adventure was over when they finished reading Peter Pan aloud as a family (he was nine at the time).
Here are some of my favorite covers, and their illustrators (click on the illustrator's name to see more):
|Gwynedd M. Hudson|
|Mabel Lucie Atwell|
|Buchel's original theatre poster for the 1904 production of Peter Pan|