The most recommended Peter Pan books

Who picked these books? Meet our 22 experts.

22 authors created a book list connected to Peter Pan, and here are their favorite Peter Pan books.
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What type of Peter Pan book?

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Book cover of Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens

Helen Falconer Author Of Primrose Hill

From my list on for teenagers to pass around their friends.

Why am I passionate about this?

Well, apart from having once been a teenager myself, I’ve also raised four teenagers and I know what they like to read, and in return, they’ve all helped me write my own books. I have a pretty eclectic attitude to stories as you can probably tell from the below list. I don't expect anyone to share my opinions, but I'd never introduce a reader to anything that’s just written to make money. 

Helen's book list on for teenagers to pass around their friends

Helen Falconer Why did Helen love this book?

Starting from an early fascination with graveyards, where I would (and do still) like to sit and chat to the dead, making good friends with some of them, I’ve always been drawn to themes about death. And this book is a really dark, peculiar prequel to Peter Pan where an infant Peter ends up as the unofficial gravedigger for dead babies. It’s also a very beautiful book, but defintely not suitable for young children!

By James Matthew Barrie,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

Trajectory presents classics of world literature with 21st century features! Our original-text editions include the following visual enhancements to foster a deeper understanding of the work: Word Clouds at the start of each chapter highlight important words. Word, sentence, paragraph counts, and reading time help readers and teachers determine chapter complexity. Co-occurrence graphs depict character-to-character interactions as well character to place interactions


Book cover of Peter and the Shadow Thieves

Eddie Jones Author Of The End of Calico Jack

From my list on fun, fast “clean” reads for reluctant YA readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

Fer over ten years I skippered a small book publishing company. During them years I inspected countless book proposals, most which got tossed overboard. I kin quickly gauge whether a manuscript be ripe fer publication. I bring that same skill ter reading YA and middle grade fiction. Ter be honest, it be a good deal easier ter judge the work of others than write great ficiton. But since “voice” be the reflection of the author’s soul, it helps ter know that those who be crafting the tales ‘ave thar moral compass aligned ter true north. These four authors be stand up in my book.

Eddie's book list on fun, fast “clean” reads for reluctant YA readers

Eddie Jones Why did Eddie love this book?

So I got this book recommendation from an alert reader, Samantha Zlobotnik, with the alarming news that pirates are now stealing ebooks and selling them on the web. I swear I am not making this up. My policy with alarming news that arrives unsolicited in my email is the same as my policy with updated privacy policy alerts. I trash them. But in this case, I bought the book recommended by Samantha Zlobotnik because it was, after all, a Dave Barry novel and written for YA boys. (Maybe also for YA girls, though I cannot confirm this.) It's funny, features pirates, includes bumbling pirates (if you're down to one good leg and a peg you're going to bumble and stumble about), and in my opinion way too long. Still, I can't stop re-reading it. Humor, pirates, ships, treasure, Peter Pan... Samantha Zlobotnik had me at "Aaarrrr! you still reading pirate…

By Dave Barry, Ridley Pearson, Greg Call (illustrator)

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Peter and the Shadow Thieves as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

A ship draws near Mollusk Island, bringing an eerie passenger - a cloaked stranger who makes even the desperate pirate crew shake in fear. Lord Ombra is coming for Peter and the Lost Boys...Peter and Tinker Bell must travel to the mean streets of Victorian London on a mission to save the world from the forces of darkness - but can they survive the sinister Shadow Thieves? A must for Peter Pan fans - young or old - this action-packed magical adventure reveals even more of the boy-who-never-grew-up's past!


Book cover of Peter Pan

Cay Fletcher Author Of Queer Windows: Volume 1 Spring

From my list on to take you on a fantastical adventure.

Why am I passionate about this?

Fantasy has long been a favorite genre of mine for the way you can explore so many different concepts and ideas, and the freedom it gives you as a storyteller. If you feel like you’ve been transported to that world as the story unfolds, I see that as a successful story. Creating vibrant, diverse, new worlds and real, flawed characters for readers is something I strive towards with every project. As a queer author, I find it especially important to give queer characters the hero roles they deserve. The best thing about fantasy is it can be anything, and anyone, from any background, can be the main character.

Cay's book list on to take you on a fantastical adventure

Cay Fletcher Why did Cay love this book?

Peter Pan was one of the first books that made me want to write and create my own worlds. Neverland was an escape, not only for the Darling children but for my earliest stories. It was a place to be anyone, and go on endless adventures, without the limitations of adult expectations. The characters will always be special to me. We may have to grow up, but we can always keep special places like Neverland in our hearts and strive to create worlds that generations of readers will enjoy. 

One note is that while I will always love this book, it was published in 1911 and I cannot endorse the racist portrayals of Native Americans/Indigenous People. As the historical costume community says, ‘vintage style, not vintage values.’

By J. M. Barrie,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Peter Pan as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

Peter Pan is a character created by Scottish novelist and playwright J. M. Barrie. A mischievous boy who can fly and never grows up, Peter Pan spends his never-ending childhood adventuring on the small island of Neverland as the leader of his gang, the Lost Boys, interacting with mermaids, Native Americans, fairies, pirates, and occasionally ordinary children from the world outside of Neverland. In addition to two distinct works by Barrie, the character has been featured in a variety of media and merchandise, both adapting and expanding on Barrie's works.


Book cover of Sisters of the Neversea

Lorelei Savaryn Author Of The Edge of in Between

From my list on retellings for middle grade readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I studied retellings as I prepared to write my own take on The Secret Garden. Retelling a classic story can not only usher something like The Secret Garden or Peter Pan into our current time and place in history, but it can also awaken the wonder and magic many of us experienced when reading these tales for the first time in a new generation. It’s been so fun for me to see how modern authors put their own spin on these stories, and I hope you will enjoy them too.

Lorelei's book list on retellings for middle grade readers

Lorelei Savaryn Why did Lorelei love this book?

In this unbelievably gorgeous take on Peter Pan, Lily and Wendy are step-sisters who must now spend a summer apart. But a mysterious boy has been watching from the window and intends to take them away forever to a mysterious land. This book tackles head-on the problematic aspects of the original story and contains a story both thrilling and fun. Family, sisterhood, and magic reign supreme in this hard-to-put-down retelling. 

By Cynthia L. Smith,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sisters of the Neversea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Five starred reviews! In this beautifully reimagined story by NSK Neustadt Laureate and New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith (Muscogee Creek), Native American Lily and English Wendy embark on a high-flying journey of magic, adventure, and courage to a fairy-tale island known as Neverland...

Lily and Wendy have been best friends since they became stepsisters. But with their feuding parents planning to spend the summer apart, what will become of their family-and their friendship?

Little do they know that a mysterious boy has been watching them from the oak tree outside their window. A boy who intends to…


Book cover of Hook's Tale: Being the Account of an Unjustly Villainized Pirate Written by Himself

Gwyn McNamee Author Of Squall Line

From my list on fulfilling your pirate fantasies.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a criminal defense attorney, mom, and wife who grew up along Lake Michigan in Wisconsin and lived there for 35 years, staring out at the vast water of the “Inland Seas” aka The Great Lakes. Intrigued by pirates, the criminals of the water, and the stories of pirates roaming the lakes, when I began writing fiction, I absolutely had to write a modern pirate series set in the area where I grew up. I’ve read dozens and dozens of historical non-fiction books about pirates, watched all the classic films and shows about them, and have read pirate romances my entire life, so writing my own was the next logical step.

Gwyn's book list on fulfilling your pirate fantasies

Gwyn McNamee Why did Gwyn love this book?

Growing up, I was always more intrigued by Captain Hook, the villain of Peter Pan, more so than I was the title character. John Leonard Pielmeier writes an incredible “memoir” from the most famous fictional pirate and uses the beloved characters from the Peter Pan story of our childhoods in a whole new way. The backstory with Smee, the conflict with the infamous crocodile, and all the major things we see in the classic story are told in a whole new way. I thoroughly enjoyed it and would recommend reading in tandem with the original Peter Pan for a fun way to see two sides to a story.

By John Leonard Pielmeier,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hook's Tale as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A rollicking debut novel from award-winning playwright and screenwriter John Pielmeier reimagines the childhood of the much maligned Captain Hook: his quest for buried treasure, his friendship with Peter Pan, and the story behind the swashbuckling world of Neverland.

Long defamed as a vicious pirate, Captain James Cook (a.k.a Hook) was in fact a dazzling wordsmith who left behind a vibrant, wildly entertaining, and entirely truthful memoir. His chronicle offers a counter narrative to the works of J.M. Barrie, a "dour Scotsman" whose spurious accounts got it all wrong. Now, award-winning playwright John Pielmeier is proud to present this crucial…


Book cover of An Awfully Big Adventure

Mark Beauregard Author Of The Whale: A Love Story

From my list on witty historical novels.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always loved satire. In college, I wrote and performed comedy sketches as part of a two-man team, and most of my work features at least some comic elements. For example, my novel The Whale: A Love Story is a serious historical novel about the relationship between Herman Melville and Nathaniel Hawthorne that also offers moments of comedy to honor Melville's comic spirit (Moby-Dick, while ultimately tragic, is a very funny book). The most serious subjects usually contain elements of the absurd, and the books I love find humor in even the gravest situations. 

Mark's book list on witty historical novels

Mark Beauregard Why did Mark love this book?

Stella Bradshaw, an aspiring teenage actor in 1950s Liverpool, joins a local theater company for its Christmas production of Peter Pan, and everyone gets more than they bargained for. Stella is a willful working-class ingenue desperate to escape her broken home life, and her enthusiasm and fearlessness force a collection of dissolute, jaded theater actors and directors to confront their own career and life choices.

The revelation on the last page makes you reconsider everything that went before in a surprise ending that’s far from a gimmick.

By Beryl Bainbridge,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked An Awfully Big Adventure as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'This is one of Bainbridge's best books. The close observation and hilarity are underlain by a sense of tragedy as deep as any in fiction' The Times

SHORTLISTED FOR THE BOOKER PRIZE IN 1990

It is 1950 and the Liverpool repertory theatre company is rehearsing its Christmas production of Peter Pan, a story of childhood innocence and loss. Stella has been taken on as assistant stage manager and quickly becomes obsessed with Meredith, the dissolute director. But it is only when the celebrated O'Hara arrives to take the lead, that a different drama unfolds. In it, he and Stella are…


Book cover of A Land of Never After

Rose Sinclair Author Of The 8th Rank

From my list on fantasy romance to fall in love with fairy tales.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have a passion for fairy tale stories especially ones for adults because they are often the first stories we learned as kids. The ability to look back at how we interpreted them and how our understanding changes over time and culture makes for something that is truly timeless, and therefore like a beloved trope is never the exact same thing twice. Each time only builds on our enjoyment and the many possibilities we can imagine. Not only in worlds of magic, but our own.

Rose's book list on fantasy romance to fall in love with fairy tales

Rose Sinclair Why did Rose love this book?

As someone who writes fairy tale retellings where everyone shares one world as we all do now, I always love the tales that my own characters don’t get to interact with. That’s where A Land of Never After comes in. Featuring a pirate queen a strong-willed Wendy, and a trans Peter Pan. I think the diversity different people expand on is what makes humans so magical in the first place.

By R. L. Davennor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Land of Never After as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

All my life, I’ve dreamed of the sea.


Mermaids, stormy skies, daring adventures, pirates…it was little wonder I sprinted to the docks the moment I left the orphanage. Eager to begin my new life, I searched for a ship that would have me—and found a thief instead. I chased the bastard.

Now I’m trapped.

I’m told this place is Neverland, but everything I touch is dead or dying; what’s left is hellbent on killing each other. Monsters lurk around every corner, and everyone I meet hides a damning secret. I’m thrust in the middle of a deadly feud, and the…


Book cover of Lost Boy: The True Story of Captain Hook

Bronwyn Eley Author Of Relic

From my list on fantasy for those who live in the dark.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been writing since before I can remember and my stories always edge towards darkness. If darkness is a cliff-face, I stand precariously on the edge, taking my readers with me and maybe… eventually… giving them a little shove. Sorry, not sorry. As a writer of dark YA fantasy, it is both my duty and privilege to read as many dark fantasy stories as possible. My series, The Relic Trilogy, isn’t all sunshine and happiness. Whenever I see a review where the reader admits they ended up in a puddle of their own tears, I celebrate because that is precisely what I’m here for folks. 

Bronwyn's book list on fantasy for those who live in the dark

Bronwyn Eley Why did Bronwyn love this book?

I will unashamedly tell anyone I meet that I am obsessed with Peter Pan. I wished I’d written it myself and will one day write a retelling. Because, honestly, sometimes the retelling is better. When Peter is darker, when Neverland is madness… or more so than it already is.

Lost Boy was not what I expected. The ending got me hard and I’m completely obsessed with this book. I don’t even want to explain anymore. Just please read it. 

Most of us are familiar with the original story thanks to the cartoon movie, but if you haven’t yet read the original book, I highly recommend that because it is a lot darker than you might think. I remember being blown away by it when I finally read it as an adult. 

And then you can go on an obsessive read-a-thon of all retellings, starting with the magnificent Lost Boy

By Christina Henry,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Lost Boy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

There is one version of my story that everyone knows. And then there is the truth. Once I loved a boy called Peter Pan.

Peter brought me to his island because there were no rules and no grownups to make us mind. He brought boys from the Other Place to join in the fun, but Peter's idea of fun is sharper than a pirate's sword. He wants always to be that shining sun that we all revolve around. He'll do anything to be that sun. Peter promised we would all be young and happy forever.

Peter will say I'm a…


Book cover of A Dictionary of Fairies: Hobgoblins, Brownies, Bogies, and Other Supernatural Creatures

Nina Antonia Author Of Johnny Thunders: In Cold Blood

From my list on decadence & the supernatural.

Why am I passionate about this?

A cult author who has survived by the skin of her wits. Nina has spent her adult years in London though many believe she is from New York, which sounds like a lot of travelling for someone who has spent the majority of her life in the dream land of writing. What does being a cult author entail? It is to be a literary Will o’ the Wisp, possessing a gem like glimmering in a mist of obscurity, loved by the rarified few. After writing many critically acclaimed books on various nefarious rock n’ rollers, her ardor dimmed with the passing years as those she had loved were no more and so she returned to her first love, which is the strange and supernatural.

Nina's book list on decadence & the supernatural

Nina Antonia Why did Nina love this book?

There is a world of difference between the fairies of folk-lore and the ‘airy-fairy’s’ to use one of Katherine Brigg’s descriptions that infest popular media. Disney’s depiction of Peter Pan & Tinkerbelle as ordinary kids who happen to have wings bears no relation to the fairies of folklore. The moment a fairy character is absorbed into capitalist entertainment, their magic is lost. The unsurpassable fairy lore of Katherine Briggs 1898-1980, takes up an entire shelf on my bookcase and includes The Anatomy of Puck, The Fairies in Tradition and Literature, The Vanishing People, and A Dictionary of Fairies. The one-time president of the English Folklore Society, her books are so authoritative and imaginative, they bring to life the incredible inhabitants of the otherworldly realm. All the best books on the subject were written before 1970, the later ones tending to be cribbed from Briggs and that other great…

By Katharine M. Briggs,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Dictionary of Fairies as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Book cover of Hook's Revenge

Annie Sullivan Author Of A Touch of Gold

From my list on YA fantasy with pirates.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a young adult fantasy author who’s been in love with pirates since before Pirates of the Caribbean came out…and who then wrote a novel inspired by it. I grew up watching every pirate movie I could and have always wanted to hunt for treasure. I feel my most calm when I’m by the ocean, and I’m a bit of a wanderer myself—having traveled to over 60 countries and to every continent (yes, including Antarctica!). I have a master’s degree in Creative Writing and love sharing my adventures with the world. 

Annie's book list on YA fantasy with pirates

Annie Sullivan Why did Annie love this book?

Okay, I cheated with this one. It’s a Middle-Grade book and not a Young Adult book. But it’s a list about pirates! You should’ve expected a little bit of cheating going on. And I had to include this one because of the voice. It’s told by a narrator who’s as off-putting as he is entertaining. And if that’s not enough, it follows Captain Hook’s daughter on her quest for revenge against Peter Pan. You’ll be hooked right away…get it? Get it??? Hahaha! I’ll be over here laughing at my own jokes (and you should go add these books to your to-be-read piles!)

By Heidi Schulz, John Hendrix (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hook's Revenge as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Twelve-year-old Jocelyn dreams of becoming every bit as daring as her infamous father, Captain James Hook. Her grandfather, on the other hand, intends to see her starched and pressed into a fine society lady. When she’s sent to Miss Eliza Crumb-Biddlecomb’s Finishing School for Young Ladies, Jocelyn’s hopes of following in her father’s fearsome footsteps are lost in a heap of dance lessons, white gloves, and way too much pink.

So when Jocelyn receives a letter from her father challenging her to avenge his untimely demise at the jaws of the Neverland crocodile, she doesn’t hesitate―here at last is the…