In this prequel to the story of Peter Pan, Peter and his ragtag group of orphans are placed on the leaky, poorly-run ship known as the "The Neverland," to be deposited on the island of Rundoon. Rundoon is governed by a barbaric king, whose acts of torture and abuse--such as the time he fed his father to his pet snake--are well-known throughout the empire. As the orphans travel the wide seas in a leaky vessel infested with rats, take abuse by the second-in-command, Slank, and are served meals that are still alive and moving, they are not sure if their fate under such a tyrant would be worse than their lot on "The Neverland," or perhaps an improvement. They look to Peter for help.
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As it happens, as the ship was loading these poor boys, a large trunk was placed in the hold of the vessel, and locked up tight. There is clearly something magical about this trunk--whoever touches it is healed, begins to sense of the beauty if the universe, and feels a profound sense of happiness and well-being. Peter is determined to find out what treasure this trunk holds, and in doing se he runs across Molly Aster, the only daughter of the man who is scheduled to be the ambassador on Rundoon, and who has--oddly enough--booked his passage separate from his daughter. Initially, Molly clearly knows more about the trunk than she will tell Peter, but she is forced to take him into her confidence as Black Stache, the most dangerous pirate on the high seas, successfully attacks first Molly's father's ship and then heads for "The Neverland."
What the trunk holds is much more than simple treasure; the contents are so powerful as to be connected to the ongoing struggle between good and evil that pervades the universe.
Peter and Molly valiantly try to fight off both Stache and their ship's own Slank from the trunk, but the battle for it takes a backseat as a violent storm whips up, and all the boys, Molly, Stache, and Slank wind up on an island inhabited by savages where visitors are promptly fed to a vicious beast in order to strongly discourage them from ever returning.
The review of this Book prepared by Rhona Finkel