Book Review: Darling Girl by Liz Michalski

“The story never says he can’t grow older,” Holly says. “Only that he can’t grow up.”

Liz Michalski, Darling Girl

Title: Darling Girl
Author: Liz Michalski
Genres: Fantasy, Retelling
Pages: 352 (Hardcover)
Published: May 3rd, 2022

My Rating: ★★★★★
Read: 5/1/2022 – 5/13/2022


I’ve always loved the story of Peter Pan. The idea of being whisked away to another world? Even as someone who doesn’t often care for fantasy, I’m enchanted by every production and adaption I’ve seen. As far as retellings go, I didn’t think anything would top the movie ‘Hook’. How wrong I was!

I read every word of this book meticulously I was so absorbed. I took my time trying to savor every second while simultaneously having trouble putting it down. The new dynamics presented here have assured that I will never look at this tale the same way again. I’m oddly okay with it. Hearing that Peter Pan was the villain was what made me pick up this book in the first place.

I wasn’t sure how I would like Holly at first. While she does so much for her kids, there is a selfish air about her. That bothered me less as the story went on and the character growth feels authentic and genuine. I loved the involvement of Jane as well. Jack and Eden are lovely additions to the Darling family. And Christopher? Oh, I do hope we will get a sequel/prequel with him in the future.

I could gush about so much but for fear of spoilers, I’ll end by saying that I thoroughly enjoyed this story. There are some loose ends that I would have liked to have been tied up, but perhaps that was intentional…

Thanks to NetGalley and Dutton for providing me with a free ARC copy in exchange for my honest review.


I’m always careful going into fantasy books because I don’t have a great track record with them. I seem to enjoy the genre more when there’s realism to it. I don’t know if Peter Pan really qualifies as realism but, for me, it’s still the kind of story where I can say that it could be possible… I can’t say enough how much I enjoyed this book. I especially liked the darker edge to it than, say, the Disney adaption.

I have since purchased a copy through Book of the Month. I will absolutely be rereading this sometime in the future.

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