What I'm Reading: Get Even by Gretchen McNeil

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Another Pan by Daniel and Dina Nayeri

Another Pan is the companion novel to Daniel and Dina Nayeri's (brother/sister team) first Marlowe School series novel, Another Faust. I read Another Faust after seeing it on a bookstore shelf, and far before I started blogging for books. I read it, enjoyed it, and have read it several times since then. Then a few months ago, I read a review of Another Pan on another blog and realized that these two had written a companion novel. I got really excited, so I went out and got it.
Here's the summary from Goodreads: Sixteen-year-old Wendy Darling and her insecure freshman brother, John, are hitting the books at the Marlowe School. But one tome consumes their attention: THE BOOK OF GATES, a coveted Egyptian artifact that their professor father believes has magical powers. Soon Wendy and John discover that the legend is real—when they recite from its pages and descend into a snaking realm beneath the Manhattan school. As the hallways darken, and dead moths cake the floor, a charismatic new R.A. named Peter reveals that their actions have unleashed a terrible consequence: the underworld and all its evil is now seeping into Marlowe.

The Marlowe books are retellings of well-known stories, Another Pan being a retelling of Peter Pan. I love Peter Pan, and this was my first re-telling of that classic, so I was excited to get into it.

What I Liked: 1) Peter Pan. It's Peter Pan! Who doesn't love Peter Pan? 2) Instead of following the pattern of Peter Pan as we know it, the authors tied it together with a Greek myth, which is how they brought the Marlowe School into it. This whole story is very unique and will keep you guessing until the very surprising ending. 3) The appearance of some old friends from Another Faust. I wasn't sure that we'd see that, but I was glad too. It was very interesting to incorporate him into this world, because it seemed that since the end of Another Faust, the Marlowe School had reinvented itself. 4) Wendy and John Darling. I especially liked John. Poor kid, he's going through this phase where he just wants to reinvent himself, and nothing seems to work. I really felt for him, and could completely understand that awkward phase he was in. 5) Happy thoughts. This is one of the biggest parts of the Peter Pan tale, and I really loved how it was translated into this story.

What I Didn't Like: Some of the characterizations were a little weak. It was hard to get to know some of them because they were a little too flat for my taste. Which, if anyone is wondering, is not what I found in Another Faust, so it isn't typical of these authors. I think maybe the plot was just so involved this time that after Wendy, Peter and John, everyone else was secondary. Even their relationships weren't very strong. Wendy was very protective of John, but everyone else just kind of revolved around each other without really touching. Wendy supposedly develops this thing for Peter, but that's just...not even insta-love. It never quite made it.

Overall thoughts: Daniel and Dina Nayeri's Another Pan was a creative and interesting re-telling of an old classic, Peter Pan. The plot drives the story forward, and readers will be surprised by the inclusion of an Egyptian myth to make the story fresh and new. The characterizations leave a little to be desired, but you know what they say. Just Think Happy Thoughts.

My rating: 3 shots

Cheers and happy reading!

4 comments:

  1. I've heard of these books but I haven't been too sure about them. Does one have to read Another Faust first?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Amber - Good question! And no, you don't have to read Another Faust to enjoy Another Pan! I personally enjoyed Another Faust better than Another Pan, but I'm wondering if because I was less familiar with the Faust story I couldn't make distinctions between the different characterizations.

    Courtney

    ReplyDelete
  3. I also enjoyed these books! Have read the 3rd one, Another Jekyll, Another Hyde and reviewed it here: http://misclisa.blogspot.com/2012/02/another-jekyll-another-hyde-by-daniel.html

    ReplyDelete

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