Peter and the Sword of Mercy Paperback – Jan 18 2011
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About the Author
Dave Barry is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author of more than a dozen books, including Dave Barry's History of the Millennium (So Far); The Shepherd, the Angel, and Walter the Christmas Miracle Dog; Dave Barry's Money Secrets; and Big Trouble. Along with Ridley Pearson, he is the co-author of Peter and the Starcatchers, Peter and the Shadow Thieves, Peter and the Secret of Rundoon, Escape from the Carnivale, Cave of the Dark Wind, Blood Tide, and Science Fair.
Ridley Pearson, in addition to the Peter and the Starcatchers series with Dave Barry, is the award-winning author of Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark, Kingdom Keepers: Disney At Dawn, Kingdom Keepers: Disney in Shadow, Steel Trapp: The Challenge, and Steel Trapp: The Academy. He has also written more than twenty best-selling crime novels, including Killer View and Killer Weekend. He was the first American to be awarded the Raymond Chandler/Fulbright Fellowship in Detective Fiction at Oxford University.
Greg Call studied graphic design at the Colorado Institute of Art in Denver. After graduating in 1983, he worked as an Art Director at the Colorado Institute of Art until the desire to do more illustrative work found him in Pasadena, California, attending The Art Center College of Design. Upon graduation in 1988, he began working freelance for clients in music, entertainment, and publishing. Greg has been recognized for his work repeatedly, including awards from the Society of Illustrators and Addy awards among others.
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In London, Queen Victoria's long reign has ended with her passing. Now her son, Edward, is the natural heir to the crown. But things do not go smoothly as the new king seems to be under some kind of spell. Forces are at work to keep him under the power of an evil band of men, led by the powerful Ombra, aka Von Schatten, a group that consists of the ferocious man/creature known only as the Skeleton:
"...his face, which was as hideously scarred as his hand, the shiny purplish skin drawn tight to the skull, hairless except for a few random tufts. A lone yellow eye glared from a deep socket; where the other eye would have been was only a hole. There was no nose; the mouth was a lipless cavern that could not fully close and thus revealed jagged teeth in a permanent mirthless grin."
This ruthless group is determined to get the tip of Curtana, which is Charlemagne's famous "Sword of Mercy." It is the Sword of Mercy that will give them the key to unlocking the chest that hides Stardust, the magical ingredient that grants immortality, youth and, of course, wealth.
While the Royal Family lies in peril, there are also strange happenings in the London Underground. People are disappearing, and James Smith -- once one of the Lost Boys himself -- has reason to believe that there is a conspiracy afoot. He stops one evening to visit with Molly and express his concerns, but too soon both James and Molly disappear. Now Wendy, Molly's 11-year-old daughter, is determined to locate her mother; to do that, she must first find Peter Pan. She has overheard enough of the conversation between her mother and James to know that only Starcatchers will understand the importance of this situation.
Thus begins one of Peter's most dangerous adventures ever.
Many familiar characters appear in this wonderful book: Wendy's Uncle Neville, a scientist and inventor of the Ornithopter, a flying machine that helps Wendy get to Neverland; Ammm, the porpoise leader (thank goodness Wendy speaks Porpoise); Lord Aster, Wendy's amazing grandfather; Shinning Pearl and Fighting Prawn, daughter and leader, respectively, of the Mollusk tribe; and, of course, the frighteningly determined Mr. Grin, the crocodile who mercilessly pursues Captain Hook.
In addition, some fun new personalities are introduced: Magill and his big bear, Karl; Patrick Hunt, a historian and specialist on the Sword of Mercy; Scarlet Johns, who, under the power of Von Schatten, works with the evil side; and the sniveling Simon Revile, traitor and servant of Von Schatten.
Between sinking ships, stardust, pirates, chomping crocodiles, sharp-toothed mermaids, ghosts, unexpected betrayals, and, yes, even some deaths, Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson continue with the high-quality, always exciting adventures of Peter, Tink and friends. When you're finished with this one, you'll be even more anxious for the next installment in this terrific series. James M. Barrie, the original author of PETER PAN so long ago, would be delighted.
--- Reviewed by Sally M. Tibbetts
Alright--edited now long after reading--we have since read the book and listened to the audio 2 times through. Enthralls all ages of normally active and excited kids every time we open it up/turn it on. Don't miss!
The authors claimed they had not intended to write this book but it is nice they did. There are lots of adventures in this with Captain Hook on the high seas once more and the bad guys really seem to be totally unstoppable. Starstuff is under siege in both London and Neverland but most of the action is in London. Tinkerbell is still a fun side of the story and a hero in her own right.
In the end there is a finality with at least some of the bad guys but also a fun hint of a future to come. A very good ending.
Was I ever wrong about that notion, I was captivated by "Peter and the Starcatchers" and became a devoted fan of this series! What a fun trip to read of Peter's beginning and an explanation of how he became the boy who would never grow up as ably and entertainingly penned by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. The incredibly fertile imaginations of these writers seemed to really blossom as they decided to fill in the details that get us to the point where J. M. Barrie takes up the narrative.
I have had the joy and pleasure of reading "Peter and the Starcatchers," "Peter and the Shadow Thieves," "Peter and the Secret of Rundoon," and now "Peter and the Sword of Mercy." All four books have been a delightful romp through sometimes humorous, yet sometimes threatening, action filled adventures as the reader follows the story of Peter and his friends. Some of the imaginative villains in these books make Captain Hook seem like a "not so bad" kind of guy.
I was definitely amused as I read the suggested age range for these books, 9-12; there is no question in my mind that children in that age range who enjoy reading a good adventure should certainly enjoy all of the books in the series. The truth of the matter, at least in my experience, is that readers of almost any age who enjoy a well written adventure story will have fun reading these books not only once but more than once.
I am truly pleased to have read them and have them available to read again. I can recommend them highly to anyone whose inner child has not shriveled and died.
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