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Lost in the Never Woods
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Lost in the Never Woods
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When children start to go missing in the local woods, a teen girl must face her fears and a past she can't remember to rescue them in this atmospheric YA novel, Lost in the Never Woods from the author...
When children start to go missing in the local woods, a teen girl must face her fears and a past she can't remember to rescue them in this atmospheric YA novel, Lost in the Never Woods from the author...
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Description-

  • When children start to go missing in the local woods, a teen girl must face her fears and a past she can't remember to rescue them in this atmospheric YA novel, Lost in the Never Woods from the author of Cemetery Boys.

    It's been five years since Wendy and her two brothers went missing in the woods, but when the town's children start to disappear, the questions surrounding her brothers' mysterious circumstances are brought back into the light. Attempting to flee her past, Wendy almost runs over an unconscious boy lying in the middle of the road...

    Peter, a boy she thought lived only in her stories, asks for Wendy's help to rescue the missing kids. But, in order to find them, Wendy must confront what's waiting for her in the woods.


    Praise for Aiden Thomas and Cemetery Boys:

    "This stunning debut novel from Thomas is detailed, heart-rending, and immensely romantic." —Mark Oshiro, author of Anger is a Gift


    "Aiden Thomas masterfully weaves a tale of family, friendships, and love in a heartwarming adventure full of affirmation and being your best self." — C.B. Lee, author of Not Your Sidekick

About the Author-

  • Aiden Thomas, author of Cemetery Boys, received their MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College. Born in Oakland, California, Aiden often haunted Mountain View Cemetery like a second home during their misspent youth. As a queer, trans Latinx, Aiden advocates strongly for diverse representation in all media. Aiden is notorious among their friends for always being surprised by twist endings to books/movies and organizing their bookshelves by color. When not writing, Aiden enjoys exploring the outdoors with their dog, Ronan. Their cat, Figaro, prefers to support their indoor hobbies, like reading and drinking too much coffee.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    January 25, 2021
    Coping with tragedy and growing up too fast takes center stage in this compassionate rural Oregon reimagining of Peter Pan. Five years ago, Wendy Darling and her brothers vanished in the dangerous woods outside town—and six months later, on her 13th birthday, she alone was found, amnesiac, with her brothers’ blood under her fingernails. Now 18 and ready for nursing school, Wendy compulsively sketches a sinister, twisted tree as well as Peter Pan, the imaginary protagonist from her mother’s bedtime stories. When children start disappearing again, the real Peter appears, fearful of growing up and begging Wendy to help find his rogue shadow, locate the children that his shadow is stealing, and perhaps save her still-missing brothers. But as Wendy’s memories begin to resurface, she realizes that Peter’s been keeping secrets—and that she’ll need to face her own painful truth. Despite a somewhat simplistic antagonist, Thomas’s (Cemetery Boys) immersive prose and nuanced, trauma-informed perspective add real depth to Barrie’s classic characters. Readers of Seanan McGuire’s Wayward Children series and Laura E. Weymouth will settle into this emotionally generous update. Ages 13–up. Agent: Jennifer March Soloway, Andrea Brown Literary.

  • Booklist

    February 1, 2021
    Grades 9-12 *Starred Review* When children go missing, the people of Astoria, Oregon, turn to Wendy Darling because, after going into the woods with her brothers five years ago, only she returned. Though the town believes Wendy to be the key to figuring out this mystery, she feels like a failure, despite the holes in her memory of that night. Then, one day, Wendy nearly runs over an unconscious boy, and Peter Pan, keeper of the children of Neverland, reenters her life, insisting that they need to work together to free the town's missing children from a terrible fate. Thomas weaves a dark retelling of J. M. Barrie's classic that is as much a gripping treatise on how grief and trauma impact our daily lives as it is a story about being forced to grow up too soon. Peter is a well-crafted character who feels pulled directly from a warm, fantastical dream, and his interactions with Wendy give the story some levity and hope, in contrast to the Darling family's palpable trauma and loss. A poignant novel about resilience, the magic of childhood, and the impossible choices that survivors often have to make in order to move forward, this will haunt readers long after they put it down--but will also leave them looking up at the stars.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Thomas' debut, Cemetery Boys, made history, earning a spot on the New York Times best-seller list in addition to a number of other recognitions. Their sophomore outing, based on the always-popular Peter Pan, will draw a crowd.

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Booklist, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    February 1, 2021

    Gr 9 Up-This dark reimagining of Peter Pan concentrates on 18-year-old Wendy Darling. She's struggling to get over the disturbing events of a kidnapping five years earlier that left her in the middle of the woods with no memories of what happened, and her two younger brothers missing. When kids begin disappearing in her sleepy hometown of Astoria, OR, it reignites the drive to find out the truth about her past. Once she runs into an older Peter Pan and his fleeing shadow, she begins to question what she knows about her childhood and starts to recover memories. Thomas brilliantly creates a malevolent tone to what should be a safe small town, crafting a feeling that something terrible is just around the bend. This modern-day fantasy touches on the classic source material while inventing new mythology that perfectly fits into place. The difficulty of overcoming a tragedy is realistically portrayed as Wendy and her family are traumatized by their shared history and have become estranged from one another as they have trouble moving on. Main characters appear to be white with the exception of Wendy's best friend and sounding board Jordan, whose family is Latinx and occasionally speaks Spanish. Characters are well-developed with surprising and emotional story arcs which will leave readers looking at Peter Pan in a whole new light. VERDICT A captivating mystery that will ensnare those who enjoy retellings and stories with a touch of magic.-Rebecca Greer, Hillsborough County P.L. Coop., FL

    Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    Wendy Darling discovers there may be more to her brothers' disappearance than meets the eye. On her 18th birthday, a spate of child disappearances in quiet, rural Astoria, Oregon, brings back memories of her and her brothers' disappearances five years prior. Only Wendy came back--found in the woods by a park ranger, clutching an acorn, and with large gaps in her memory. Complicating matters even further, a strange boy calling himself Peter Pan arrives, asking Wendy to help him track down his shadow before more kids go missing. Convinced that she may be able to find out what happened to John and Michael, Wendy agrees. Pressures mount on all sides as Wendy and Peter embark on a race against the clock. Wendy has an anxiety disorder, signs of survivor's guilt, and a compulsive hand-washing habit; the narrative treats her sympathetically, and her mental health issues are clearly linked to her past. This spin on a well-known story focuses on childhood trauma, growing up, loss, and letting go. Peter Pan's shadow serves as an oppressive force throughout, evoking terror in both Wendy and, likely, many readers at the mention of darkness or nighttime, and some scenes, especially those regarding the missing children, are quite intense. Most characters are White by default; Wendy's best friend is cued as Latinx. An intense, cathartic, bittersweet tale. (Fantasy. 14-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. (Online Review)

  • Romina Garber, New York Times-bestselling author of Zodiac "Absolutely delightful! Lost in the Never Woods is chock-full of suspense, excitement, and nostalgia. Peter Pan is as thrilling and seductive as ever, and Thomas' heartfelt tale feels as ageless as the legend himself."
  • Kirkus Reviews "This spin on a well-known story focuses on childhood trauma, growing up, loss, and letting go.... An intense, cathartic, bittersweet tale."
  • Mark Oshiro, author of Anger is a Gift "This stunning debut novel from Thomas is detailed, heart-rending, and immensely romantic. Don't miss this book."
  • New York Times Book Review " 'Scooby-Doo' meets 'Love, Simon' in this inclusive supernatural romance steeped in East Los Angeles Latinx culture."
  • Mason Deaver, author of I Wish You All The Best "This book is magical, tender, loving, and so so so important. I love it with all my heart."
  • Isabel Sterling, author of These Witches Don't Burn "Cemetery Boys is a celebration of culture and identity that will captivate readers with its richly detailed world, earnest romance, and thrilling supernatural mystery. This delightful debut is a must-read for all paranormal romance fans."
  • Publishers Weekly, starred review " Thomas marries concept and execution in a romantic mystery as poignant as it is spellbinding, weaved in a mosaic of culture, acceptance, and identity, where intricately crafted characters are the pieces and love--platonic, romantic, familial, and communal--is the glue."

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