Read of the Week: ‘Second Star’ by Alyssa B. Sheinmel

Second StarA twisty story about love, loss, and lies, this contemporary oceanside adventure is tinged with a touch of dark magic as it follows seventeen-year-old Wendy Darling on a search for her missing surfer brothers. Wendy’s journey leads her to a mysterious hidden cove inhabited by a tribe of young renegade surfers, most of them runaways like her brothers. Wendy is instantly drawn to the cove’s charismatic leader, Pete, but her search also points her toward Pete’s nemesis, the drug-dealing Jas. Enigmatic, dangerous, and handsome, Jas pulls Wendy in even as she’s falling hard for Pete. A radical reinvention of a classic, Second Star is an irresistible summer romance about two young men who have yet to grow up–and the troubled beauty trapped between them.

This book is the best form of retelling genius-ness.

Peter Pan.



Fairy dust.

Yes, yes, yes. This book is it for me.

I’m a total sucker for Peter Pan, always have been, always will be. When I first watched the Disney sequel I cried all three times I went to the theater, solely because I couldn’t be Jane. When I was six I told my mother I wanted to marry someone like Peter, part boy, sort-of man. From then on it’s gone downhill. I still haven’t met my Peter Pan, but I’ve made up for it by watching all the Peter Pan films I can find and singing along to the Disney versions, because there’s nothing better than that. I’ve also read the J.M Barrie novel and I’ve cried repeatedly for the boy who’ll never get to grow up. I’ve also already decided that I need to have two sons in the sometime future so that I can dress them up as Hook and Peter. So, yes, like Robin Hood, I have an unhealthy Peter Pan fetish.


I’m going to take a wild guess and say it has something to do with the feathered caps.

Moving on, Second Star is one of my favorite retellings of Barrie’s story. Ever.

It’s like the perfect summer story with Peter and Hook and Tinkerbell, and this should make all of you very happy because I’m so happy just thinking of this book.

Alyssa Sheinmel did a great job of dropping little hints and making small things relevant to the original story. It was great being able to point out little factors and laugh about it.


Most of all, I loved that Hook was not played out as the ultimate villain. Jas was great and for a love triangle, I did find myself rooting for him for some time, but will still admit that I am a bit iffy as to whether I’m team Pete or Jas. They both had their pros and cons, and while I’m almost certainly sure I know just who Wendy picked, I still can’t help but be a little torn just because I loved both characters that much. Bell was also another favorite, but I had wished that we’d gotten a little more into her story seeing as she is such an integral character. Michael and John have my heart, though, and I wanted so much more time with them that I, unfortunately, didn’t get.

Also, there is what I thought to be a huge plot twist at the end of the novel, and I definitely did not expect things to end the way they did, but it felt right, as fidgety as it still makes me to think of it. Something tells me we won’t ever get a sequel, but there’s always our own minds to take care of problems like those.

The scene to this novel is perfect. Beach squatters and parties and salt water, it’s all so yummy. This book is going to be perfect to take on a weekend getaway. Second Star from here on out will be my summer go-to, and I hope, yours, as well.

Rating: 10/10



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