Ten, Bloomsbury Square by Gardner McKay
Ten, Bloomsbury Square joins the ranks of many retellings, re-imaginations, and reiterations of the classic J.M. Barrie tale, Peter Pan. Ninety years after the original story takes place, Ten, Bloomsbury Square picks up in modern-day London, where Peter Pan has become Lord Peter Isling—completely unaware of his own fantastical history, having flown into the Eiffel Tower in the midst of World War I causing him to experience amnesia. One night, after a bit too much champagne, Lord Peter stumbles into a very familiar room at Ten, Bloomsbury Square, a room once occupied by Wendy, John, and Michael Darling. The room’s new occupants are three American children. Hilarity and adventure ensue when Peter Pan begins to remember who he is and decides to take one of the American children, a young boy called Giles, on a quick flight to Neverland. Upon arriving in Neverland, Peter realizes that he has made a horrible mistake by leaving the Lost Boys stranded on the island over ninety years ago. Peter must tackle a number of obstacles now in order to rectify his mistake and bring the Lost Boys back home to London.
Despite the dialogue’s being a bit problematic—it’s at times stilted and unnatural, oscillating between highly formal diction and odd colloquialisms—this is an exciting new twist on the Peter Pan story and a thoroughly enjoyable read overall. It’s light and playful, never taking itself too seriously. Ten, Bloomsbury Square is definitely worth a read if re-imaginations of fairytales are your cup of tea!
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