A 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.
I was born in Stanford, California, and even though I moved across the country to New York when I was six years old, I still think of myself as a California girl.
Like so many writers, I grew up loving books. I loved stories so much that when there was nothing to read, I wrote my own stories just to give myself something to read. And when there was no pen and paper to be had, I made up stories and acted them out by myself. I played all the parts, and I was never bored.
Second Star by Alyssa B. Sheinmel
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I was really excited for this book… sun, sand, surfing… all to set the stage for a reinvention of the classic Peter Pan. I guess maybe I am not a fan of Peter Pan because this wasn’t what I had hoped it would be.
Quoting the summary from goodreads “Second Star is an irresistible summer romance about two young men who have yet to grow up–and the troubled beauty trapped between them.” But this was not at all what I read.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved the beginning and the set-up of the story, but about half way through I was kind of like ‘What in the hell is going on here?’
Wendy’s twin brothers go missing while surfing… Wendy and her family are informed that they died chasing the waves they loved, but Wendy isn’t convinced. She is determined to find them, she swears they are still out there at some beach surfing their lives away. She meets a gorgeous boy named Pete and he leads her to Kensington… a beach filled with abandoned homes sitting on the edges of cliffs and this is where the drama begins.
I think where I struggled most with this story is that I never really felt a connection to any of the characters. They were simply these shells and I wanted Sheinmel to go a bit deeper with them so I could form that connection to them. From Pete to Wendy to Jas I just didn’t know enough to care.
But I also wasn’t sure what to make about the story as a whole… There were parts of this story that were really beautifully done and the first half of the book was exactly what I was hoping for when I read “irresistible summer romance.” But then things take a turn. I’m not going to say anything about what happens, but I will say that there are definitely some twists and turns that I wasn’t expecting. They weren’t bad, but they just didn’t do anything to endear me to the story or the characters.
In all honesty, I didn’t hate this book… I know it may seem that way, but I didn’t. I just wasn’t really sure what to make of it when I turned the last page and that in turn has me confused about what I should be thinking about this. It was a different and enjoyable read but it definitely isn’t something that will be a memorable book for me. If you’re looking for a story that retells you the story of Peter Pan,THIS IS NOT IT. It is definitely a ‘reinvention’. But if you can go into this without preconceived notions and you want something that will have you wondering what’s going to happen next, then definitely check this one out.