Peter Pan (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)

Peter Pan (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)


$7.95 View All Available Formats & Editions
Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for guaranteed delivery by Thursday, December 12


Peter Pan, by J.M. Barrie, is part of the Barnes & Noble Classics series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of Barnes & Noble Classics:
  • New introductions commissioned from today's top writers and scholars
  • Biographies of the authors
  • Chronologies of contemporary historical, biographical, and cultural events
  • Footnotes and endnotes
  • Selective discussions of imitations, parodies, poems, books, plays, paintings, operas, statuary, and films inspired by the work
  • Comments by other famous authors
  • Study questions to challenge the reader's viewpoints and expectations
  • Bibliographies for further reading
  • Indices & Glossaries, when appropriate
All editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. Barnes & Noble Classics pulls together a constellation of influences—biographical, historical, and literary—to enrich each reader's understanding of these enduring works. Peter Pan first flew across a London stage in 1904, overwhelming audiences with its tale of a magical boy who never grows up, who lures young Wendy and her brothers to Neverland where they meet pirates, Indians, fairies, and the Lost Boys. Following the play’s astonishing success, J. M. Barrie revised and expanded the story and published it as this novel, originally titled Peter and Wendy when it appeared in 1911. For children, it remains a marvelous mix of fantasy and adventure, featuring unique, imaginative characters, who frisk and frolic in an enchanting land.

For adults, the story of Peter and the Lost Boys works on a much deeper level, speaking to them about the inevitable loss of childhood and the ability “to fly.” The climactic duel between the “proud and insolent youth” (Peter Pan) and the “dark and sinister man” (Captain Hook) is both a swashbuckling romp and a moving metaphor for the complex, poignant struggle between innocent but irresponsible youth and tainted but dependable maturity. Neither side wins, for the one inevitably becomes the other. Of course, the ageless Peter Pan is the happy exception.

Amy Billone teaches at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She received her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature at Princeton University, where she wrote her dissertation on women’s involvement with the nineteenth-century sonnet.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781593082130
Publisher: Barnes & Noble
Publication date: 10/05/2005
Series: Barnes & Noble Classics Series
Pages: 208
Sales rank: 13,823
Product dimensions: 5.18(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.52(d)

Read an Excerpt

From Amy Billone’s Introduction to Peter Pan

Unlike characters in most other children’s literature, Peter Pan has achieved mythological status. Even though many people have not read Barrie’s novel or play, Peter Pan is now as well known as Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty. Why is Peter Pan such a memorable drama? The story may be so compelling partly because of its attentiveness to reversibility. Childhood and adulthood, birth and death, boys and girls, dreams and waking life all persistently change places in the story. But they change places in such a way that they reinforce rather than dismantle the oppositions that confuse and distress us. Children do become adults; birth leads to death; boys and girls cannot effortlessly change roles; dreams remain distinct from waking life. Time moves ferociously forward. Even though Peter Pan is the story of a boy who never grows older, the narrative proves that everyone else must age. The first sentence of the novel tells us so: “All children, except one, grow up.” While the legend tempts us with achingly desirable unions, it is about the difficulty (if not the impossibility) of fusing disparate worlds: life and death, dreams and reality, masculinity and femininity, childhood and adulthood. Through lively comedy, Peter Pan brilliantly masks the underlying sadness that threatens to pull the story apart.

The heartbreaking undercurrents in Peter Pan become evident when we consider the mirroring between fantasy and reality that took place in J. M. Barrie’s life. Like Peter Pan, Barrie remained a ghostly outsider. He wanted children of his own but instead found himself staring in at the Llewelyn Davies family, with whom he shared no blood relationship. Peter Pan convinces the Darling children to fly away with him in an attempt to take them from their parents and make them his; Barrie inadvertently achieved the same result with the Davies boys. In 1907 Arthur Llewelyn Davies, their father, died of cancer of the jaw. In 1909 James and Mary Barrie were divorced because of her affair with Gilbert Cannan. And in 1910 Sylvia Llewelyn Davies died of cancer. Barrie was left with five boys—age seven to seventeen—all of whom were now orphans left to his care.

What was J. M. Barrie’s relationship with the Davies brothers? There are certainly passages in some of Barrie’s novels that read, a century after their publication, as suspiciously attentive to the attractiveness of little boys. Barrie’s involvement with the Davies boys was unusually close—more intense, perhaps, than typical relationships between parents and their natural offspring. However, Nicholas Llewelyn Davies swore to Barrie’s biographer Andrew Birkin that Barrie never showed one hint of homosexuality or pedophilia toward him or his brothers. Critics have for the most part concluded that Barrie was entirely sexless. Nevertheless, he loved the Davies brothers obsessively. We might even go so far as to say that he was in love with at least two of them, George and Michael. As Barrie himself wrote in Margaret Ogilvy, “The fierce joy of loving too much, it is a terrible thing” (p. 206). Years later, Barrie wrote to George Llewelyn Davies, then twenty-one years old and fighting in World War I:

I do seem to be sadder today than ever, and more and more wishing you were a girl of 21 instead of a boy, so that I could say the things to you that are now always in my heart. For four years I have been waiting for you to become 21 & a little more, so that we could get closer & closer to each other, without any words needed (quoted in Birkin, p. 228).

Shortly after receiving Barrie’s letter, George was killed in Flanders. This event was probably the most traumatic experience Barrie had endured since his brotherrrrrrrrrrrrrr’s death. But the worst was still to come. On May 19, 1921, Michael Llewelyn Davies, the fourth of the boys, was drowned while swimming in Oxford with his best friend, Rupert Buxton, who also drowned. Like George, Michael died when he was twenty-one. Rumors circulated that the deaths of Michael and his friend Rupert were intentional, the result of a mutual suicide pact.

Barrie never recovered from Michael’s death. His secretary, Lady Cynthia Asquith, wrote that he looked like a man in a nightmare. He became suicidal and grew quite ill with grief. “All the world is different to me now. Michael was pretty much my world” (letter to Elizabeth Lucas, December 1921; quoted in Birkin, p. 295). He explained in his notebook that he dreamed Michael came back to him, not knowing he had drowned, and that Barrie kept this knowledge from him. The two lived together for another year quite ordinarily though strangely close to each other. Little by little Michael realized what was going to happen to him. Even though Barrie tried to prevent him from swimming, both knew what was sure to happen. Barrie accompanied Michael to the dangerous pool, holding his hand, and when they reached the deadly place, Michael said “good-bye” to Barrie and went into the water and sank. Barrie interrupts his account of the dream with new insight into the import of Peter Pan: “It is as if, long after writing P. Pan, its true meaning came back to me, desperate attempt to grow up but can’t.” Although Barrie lived for another sixteen years, he was never able to write successfully after Michael died. The author passed away before the final scene of this tragedy, for Peter Llewelyn Davies, too, eventually took his own life; in 1960 he jumped beneath an underground train in London.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

Peter Pan (Barnes & Noble Classics Series) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 663 reviews.
Charlotte_Isabella More than 1 year ago
This is not your typical Disney version of Peter Pan. This version is actually very heart wrenching. It tells the story of Peter Pan, Tiger Lily, and the Lost Boys of course, but the Disney version only sugar coats the story where everyone lives happily ever after. This is not the case in this original tale of a boy who never grows up while everyone in the real world does. Heart breaking. Love this version, though. Everyone who is a fan of the movie, or who never wants to grow up should read this. I guarantee you wont after reading.
Guest More than 1 year ago
In a world full of weak, sappy and utterly meaningless books, sometimes it's nice to sit back with a cup of tea on a rainy day and crack open your grandfather's worn copy of Peter Pan. With its whimsical heroes and frightening villians, this book is more than just a thoughtful, exciting adventure. It's a look into the Victorian world through a child's eyes. Get past the mousiness of Wendy, the arrogance of Peter and the carefree exterior of the Lost Boys and you'll find a hauntingly beautiful tale about love and how precious a life is, no matter how short it may be. I highly recommend this book!
healingmercy More than 1 year ago
Peter Pan may be a children's book but I recommend it highly to anyone who feels like they need to get in touch with their imagination. Trust me, there is truth that lies in it for all ages.
Biscuit1KL More than 1 year ago
This is a most delightful story.....easy to read and quite enjoyable.......all ages could and should indulge in some make believe!!
Fanya More than 1 year ago
Peter Pan
I read a book called Peter Pan by the author named James Matthew Barrie. This book in an amazing book to dive in for an adventure. The book is full of magic and fantasy. You will get swept of your feet while reading this book. This book is set during the early 1900¿s with a family named The Darling¿s. In the story the family members are Mr. and Mrs. Darling, Wendy, John and Michael. Another character that is important in the book is Peter pan of course, he can be categorized the main character of the whole story. This book was inspired by author¿s older brother dying when he was only fourteen year old. The author¿s mother said that since he never got the chance to grow he will always remain a boy. The story of Peter Pan is mostly set in Neverland where Peter lives. Neverland is a magical world where fairies exist and many of your dreams may come true. The book only has 197 pages to read so it¿s not too long but it¿s not too short.
If you enjoyed this book you can also read a book about fantasy written by Lewis Carroll called Alice in Wonderland.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! After I read it, I felt like going out and having a adventure! It really makes you think about how your living life. I recommend not reading the last chapter though-it's sad.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I began reading this book to my daughter when she was just 2 years old. By the time that she was 5, we read this book together. I will never forget all of her questions and the look of awe in her eyes as she heard the chapters night after night. A true joy of a book!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
My children and I often read this book together and then watch the movie afterwards. This is the ultimate do-gooder book for any child, especially those who seem to know better than their parents.
SJKessel More than 1 year ago
arrie, J.M. (2003). Peter Pan. New York: Aladdin Paperbacks. 0689866917 It seems with several movie versions, Hook, Finding Neverland, and the actual play, nobody could escape knowing something of the story of Peter Pan. However, it seems that only a small number of people actually read the book these days. Those that do, will discover a shockingly complicated and difficult text. Jumps in time and point of view, numerous metaphors, images, cultural and historic references and an interrupting narrator will make this a challenging read for many young readers. Plus Peter is really forgetful and potentially annoying. Nonetheless, there are uses for this book and exercises that may be completed. Just don't do them with too young of a crowd. If I were to use this book in the classroom it would be with high school students. Since there are so many rich themes and metaphors and since most students are probably familiar with some version of the narrative this book could be of good use in introducing analysis and literary theory. It is undeniable that Barrie captured a sense of magic, fun, and childhood that most children's writers cannot help but desire to equal. And because of this, there are great fun exercises that can be done, such as having children create or draw their own maps of Neverland. Since the book is also a play, it lends itself to being reenacted. This could help with visualization. Also, a special note if teachers use the edition of the book forwarded by author Susan Cooper-Her comments would influence anyone's reading of the text. For me, most striking is the delicate description of Barrie as "yearning for little-boy love" (p. XVI). Activities to do with the book: Have students create their own Neverlands, analyze the book's literary themes, enact scenes, research Barrie's life, discuss the imagination and separation between reality and fantasy, consider issues of power and the conditions of motherhood, the construction of masculinity and femininity etc. Students could also discuss the many reinterpretations and sequels to the narrative. Favorite Quotes: "All children, except one, grow up" (p. 1). "To die will be an awfully big adventure" (p. 123). "I'm youth, I'm joy" (p. 195). FOR MORE OF MY CHILDREN'S BOOK REVIEWS SEE
Guest More than 1 year ago
I absolutely love this book and definitely recommend it. It is so beautiful and sad! You fall in love with the characters, especially with Peter with all of his cockiness and forgetfullness. You learn more about Captain Hook, Peter Pan, and Neverland in the book than in the movie. The story is also written beautifully and is intriguing with all of its adventures and characters. However, more than that, the themes of youth and growing up are the factors that make the story so wonderful. I cried at the end of the novel because it is very touching and leaves a lasting impression on your heart.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have always loved the story of Peter Pan. This book was soo magical, I couldn't put it down. Anyone looking for a good book should read this.
LightSaberChels More than 1 year ago
One of the most wonderful bits of fiction ever written. Truly timeless.
OctoberHoliday More than 1 year ago
I read this book for the first time when I was 12 years old. It was so exciting to go back to Neverland, see all of the characters I grew up with and loved. J. M. Barrie created a beautiful, magical place of make-believe and pretend, and I don't doubt that each of us went there at least once as a child. The thing that astounded me was the great depth of the book. There were undertones and messages of mortality and acceptance. For instance, in the case of Captain James Hook, he stays in Neverland for his chance to take Peter Pan's life, but in the form of the ticking-crocodile, time is already after him and he has it on his mind, and he is frightened by it. Then there is the sadness of Peter Pan himself, the lost enigma that he is, locked forever out of a great happiness; family. There is so much hidden in the story, things that children would never quite understand. And that brings me to my favorite part about this story: as you grow older, reading this book as you become an adult, the story changes for you unlike anything I've ever known. As a child, I saw it as a happy adventure. As teenager, I see it as a rememberance of my own childhood slipping away, and my wanting to go back or keep that childhood inside of me. I've no idea what it'll mean to me when I'm an adult, and since I'm still a teenager I'm in no hurry to find out. The writing of J. M. Barrie is interesting and satirical, but also slightly childish. The world he created is magical and accessable, somewhere you can go in you imagination, a place to go away to, and for that I thank him. My only qualms with this version are the illistrations; not accurate and not fitting. Otherwise, still my favorite book.
star12 More than 1 year ago
Have you ever drempt about flying? If yes, READ THIS BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Peter Pan. Peter Pan is an exiting fantasy book about a young man Names Peter who finds a your girl named Wendy and her brothers named John and others who have fun adventures together. The beginning of the book was ok I particularly liked the part where they flew off into the night and to the neverlands. The book got better as it moved along like when captain hook and pan got into the fight. That by far was the climax of the story but when Pan had to catch wendy from falling off the blank that was ok. I didn¿t like the part when they were at the indians though for some reason I found it boring. Another part I found boring was when peter and Wendy got into a fight and they wouldn¿t talk to each other. I thought this book was fairly good. I thought there could be some more action in this book. I like the way the author put this book in its order because it made it easier to read. The setting is first in a urban apartment until Peter Pan came and took them away to the Neverlands. When they got there it was very wooded and they had lots of fun. The author J.M Barrie was a man who didn't want to grow up. So i¿m assuming that the reason he wrote this book is because he was very childish and wrote books in his wildest imagination. He was a nice person though. He was born on May 9, 1860 in Kirriemurir, Scotland and died on June 19,. 1937 in London, England. He had a wife named Mary Ansell '1894-1909'. He also had a son named Liewelyn Davies. He is notable for his book: ¿The Little White Bird¿ . One of the parts that was kinda boring but got kinda exiting as when they went to the indians place and they were smoking and when they got dancing it got better. Peter Pan is a very exiting book that makes you want to read more about it. I had Fun reading it and I would recommend it to people who like fantasy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A wonderful fairytale, full of adventure. Definitely a classic which can be enjoyed by readers of all ages.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think this book is simply magical. I got sucked into it. I couldn't stop reading it! A true classic. I love how it is written. You can really understand it. I recommend it to anyone who likes fantasy, action, or anything like that.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Peter Pan has been illustrated many, many times by various illustrators. However, I don't find any of the previous attempts as outstanding as Scott Gustafson's edition. Gustafson is a master illustrator who vividly and imaginatively brings J. M. Barrie's endearing text to life. He has taken great care to illustrate this timeless story, paying great attention to detail and accuracy. We get to see the Darling family, the Lost Boys, and all the denizens of Neverland. Some of the illustrations found in this appealing edition are Peter and Tinkerbelle entering the Darling nursery, a breath-taking double page spread of the Lost Boys surveying the Neverland, and under water in the luscious Mermaids' Lagoon where a group of mermaids are playing with hundreds of rainbow-colored bubbles. There are fifty oil paintings; some are vignettes, some are full page, and others are double page. Gustafson's illustrations nicely complement the classic text. And if you have never read this story, this would be the edition to purchase. If you have children, then Gustafson's illustrations will surely please and enchant them. However, I consider this book to be more of a coffee table book than a book to be placed on a child's bedroom shelf. This edition of Peter Pan is a pleasure for both reading the text and viewing the paintings!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Follows Neils
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She steps into the house. "Garret! Where are you?"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Mom dad bother sister dog cat boom
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Can i have some friend just pit oit ypur emaol
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I believe in fairies. And you are never too old to read "Peter Pan". ~*~LEB~*~
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Join the newest rp yet and go on epic adventures, fall in love, and be your favorite characters! Type in "gsfd". Rules and map are in res.1
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Investigate Seven