The Lost Darling
Rating 4 out of 5
"There are a million women in existence throughout the universe, but there is no other soul in all the galaxies like yours. I would choose you over her every day, with every breath."
"But that's the beauty of a book, the characters are perfectly flawed. Damaged just enough that we still love them. Whereas reality is nothing but empty promises and baggage the size of mountains."
Wednesday has had a rough go of it lately. She walked in on her sister and boyfriend together and now to add insult to injury the two are getting married, and Wednesday has been invited along on wedding festivities but not as part of the wedding party. On one of the trips out she gets "second star to the left and continue until morning" tattooed; it was supposed to be a nod to a future of possibilities and also a reminder to remember the magic of her childhood. That sense of wonder that is just inherent in childhood, which the burdens of life had finally snuffed out for her.
Perhaps most important the tattoo was an ode to her first crush; even if he was animated. Wednesday would have given anything to be whisked away to Neverland, considering her world was crumbling down around her. However, what she didn't know was that in getting the tattoo she had sealed her fate in ink and branded herself as one of The Lost. Neverland was everything the stories said... But one crucial detail had been left out... to get there you had to die.
Alright so this book has just about everything you could ask for. Peter Pan, steamy, morally gray characters, love triangle, a twist you didn't see coming, betrayal, and a new twist on a classic story. I was in from the minute I saw it was a Pan retelling and let me tell you it does not disappoint. The beginning starts off a little strange and with a very bitter Wednesday, but once we get to Neverland the story really flies by. I think the author does an amazing job of writing her characters and building up the moment because I felt like I was on the edge of my seat quite a bit.
I liked the backstory that the author developed for Peter, Wendy and The Lost. I don't want to give anything away so I am intentionally going to be vague. It became clear early on in the story that this was only the start of something more so a lot of world building takes place in this one. You are given just enough information but still left wondering. Peter checks all the boxes for the tall, dark and broody character. It's even his idea for himself to be painted as the villain in this story!
Peter and Wednesday have some insane chemistry and the spice in this book is perfectly balanced. If I'm being completely honest the story at times gave off some ACOTAR vibes but honestly who is complaining about that either. I'm sure by now you are wondering why it's only a four star review then, right? Well I'll blame it on the whole last chapter with its insane, took me by surprise, ending with that ridiculous cliffhanger that leaves me wanting more, which isn't coming yet! So yeah go read this book like now.