Author: Alyssa B. Sheinmel.
Published: May 13th 2014 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Sort: Stand-alone, contemporary.
Source: Netgalley & Publisher.
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.
Wendy is still looking for her two brothers who disappeared six months ago. She is convinced they are still alive, surfing somewhere. It’s obvious that she is in denial and it’s not strange with the non-supportive friends and family. Her parents are too busy with their own grief and Fiona doesn’t want to understand Wendy.
This doesn’t mean that Wendy handles things the right way either. One day she just moves in with Pete in his house carved in the rock at the beach. She just met the guy, he kissed her after a couple of hours and he was creeping me out. I really didn’t like the rash decisions of Wendy. Or how Pete is already talking about being in love with her and how he lies to keep her there. So many things were wrong and this prevented me from seeing them as a possible couple. Plus, what the hell where her parents doing in the mean time? I sincerely hope they noticed her absence, but I wasn’t given any clue they were looking for her when she gets home the first time..
To make the creepy crew complete, there is also drugs dealer Jas. He is the archenemy of Pete, but I did like him a little better. At least he was honest and helpful, but again: she goes with him on a road trip to a place her brothers might be after their second meeting. The first time she ended up hallucinating at Fiona’s house, because she took drugs. Girl, did your parents never teach you to stay away from strangers? Jas is also the second character she instantly falls in love with, but that almost didn’t come as a surprise. I know that the blurb hinted this, but I hoped there was more time or at least a magical feeling. The romances went completely wrong for me. (Insta-love in the first 30 pages? I mean. Come on!)
I also disliked how her parents keep telling her she is imaging things. They don’t believe her story and say it’s only a way to deal with her brother’s death. And everything felt so flat. Besides annoyance for Wendy’s stupid decisions and a lot of head shakes for the insta-loves, I didn’t feel a thing. Combined with the ending which failed to end the story properly, I wouldn’t recommend this not succeeded attempt for a contemporary Peter Pan retelling. 2 stars for originality and the fact I managed to finish it.