Considered a masterpiece since its first appearance on stage in 1904, Peter Pan is J. M. Barrie’s most famous work and arguably the greatest of all children’s stories. While it is a wonderful fantasy for the young, Peter Pan, particularly in the novel form Barrie published in 1911, says something important to all of us. Here “the boy who wouldn’t grow up” and his adventures with Wendy and the lost boys in the Neverland evoke a deep emotional response as they give form to our feelings about parents, boys and girls, the unknown, freedom, and responsibility. Humorous, satiric, filled with suspenseful cliff-hangers and bittersweet truths, Peter Pan works an indisputable magic on readers of all ages, making it a true classic of imaginative literature.
About the Author
J.M. Barrie was born in 1860, the ninth of ten children of hard-working parents in Scotland's jute-weaving industry. Fascinated by stories of her own life told him by his mother, he was determined to write, finding work on the Nottingham Journal after graduating from Edinburgh University. In 1885, he moved to London as a freelance writer and successfully sold the Auld Licht Idylls, a volume based on his mother's tales. By the time Peter Pan opened on the London stage in 1904, Barrie had written more than thirty novels and plays, many autobiographical and several of them major hits such as The Little Minister, Quality Street and The Admirable Crichton. Knighted and awarded the Order of Merit he continued writing into old age. He died in 1937.
“Barrie wrote his fantasy of childhood, added another figure to our enduring literature, and thereby undoubtedly made one of the boldest bids for immortality of any writer. . . . It is a masterpiece.”—J. B. Priestley