The thing about being 7 is that you don't know what a classic is yet...not really. I pretty much thought most things my mom wanted me to read, had to be boring by unequivocal scientific theory. Peter Pan was not one of those books. I don't think anyone in the house even knew it existed, and nobody told me it was a brilliant book. I found it in some random box, and fell in love so fast, I hid underneath the bed to read it. It didn't do me any good to hide, because I got lost in the story and my mom found me under the bed skipping out on chores...twice. Peter Pan just gives you happy thrills, and it was a firmly cemented favorite of mine....I read it several times before I lost it permanently when we moved. (I was just as scatterbrained and unorganized as a child). In my mind, Peter Pan was my age, and always has been my age, so reading it this past week as an adult came with this weird, surreal feeling that's tripping me out. I'm struggling to find words, because it feels like two vastly different books.
Peter Pan still has his baby teeth? Good heavens, I pictured him as like 11 or something. And really, "mischievous" is a nice word, he's actually kind of an ornery brat. I'd say he reminds me of Jamie, but I'm not sure if that's flattering arrogance on my part or shameful embarrassment. Still, it's nothing short of amazing that something written a hundred years ago is still has the ability to suck you end and transport you to an enchanted world.
Did I say amazing already? Amazing.
Somehow I missed reading Peter Pan back in the days I was tackling the classics. How could that happen? It has become so intrinsic to popular culture that whether or not you've read it, you think you have. I had no idea what I was missing.
My husband and I rewatched the cartoon and watched the live action movie together and read through the Dave Barry spinoff series. Then one day the original book came up in conversation, and I mentioned that I had never read it.
My husband was horrified. "It's right there on our shelf," he said, "you really should give it a try."
So I thought I'd at least check out the first few pages. I read. And I read. And I read.
And I was entranced. Peter Pan is a true classic, a book you want all your friends to read so you can enjoy the adventure together.