by Peter David


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Paul Dear is a good and clever boy, but he’s special in ways that even his adoring parents could never have imagined. For by day, in London’s Kensington Gardens, he walks and talks with the pixies and sprites and other magical creatures that dwell among the living–but are unseen by most. Then everything changes when tragedy strikes–and a quest begins that will lead Paul to a curio shop where a magical ally awaits him and launches him into the starry skies, bound for a realm where anything is possible. Far from home, Paul will run with fierce Indian warriors, cross swords with fearsome pirates, befriend a magnificent white tiger, and soar beside an extraordinary, ageless boy who reigns in a boundless world of imagination.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345501608
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/12/2009
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 12 - 18 Years

About the Author

Peter David is famous for writing some of the most popular of the original Star Trek: The Next Generation novels, including Imzadi and A Rock and a Hard Place. His original works include the Arthurian novel Knight Life and the quirky werewolf story Howling Mad. He single-handedly revived the classic comic book series The Incredible Hulk and has written just about every famous comic book superhero. He collaborated with J. Michael Straczynski on the Babylon 5 comic book series, and with Bill Mumy, he created the Nickelodeon television series Space Cases. In his spare time, he writes movie screenplays, children's books, and TV scripts (including Babylon 5).

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

The Bird WhoTold Him So

Young Paul Dear stared at his reflection one evening for a very long time. When his reflection began talking back to him, Paul began to think that perhaps he himself was actually The Boy of Legend.

In order to understand how that came to pass, it is important to learn of the events directly preceding the moment Paul’s reflection stuck its tongue out at him and threw several cocky and very saucy challenges his way.

Paul knew about pixies. He knew about elves and leprechauns. He knew about mermaids who dwelt beneath the chopping whitecaps from the times when his father and mother, Patrick and Colleen Dear, took him to Brighton on holiday. They would watch the surf and his father would tell him stories of such fancies as he knew. Sometimes Paul’s father would lean in and say softly, “Don’t look at your mum when I say this. But she is, in fact, part leprechaun, what with having the Irish in her blood. Hush! Are you not listening? If you look at her sidelong with a suspicious eye, she will disappear just out of the habit of her kind.”

“So I am part leprechaun as well?” Paul said eagerly. His father simply smiled in that puzzling way he had. It is, as we all know, the way that parents always smile when they want you to think they know the answers, and perhaps even want to convince themselves as well.

Paul did not press his father on the answers, knowing that he had learned all he was going to. However, if he had known that his father was going to go away, he might well have been more insistent in trying to determine the truths of the world in general and himself in particular. Paul did not know that his time with his father and mother was limited, for to all children time is an inexhaustible commodity and childhood an endless haze of day-after-day.

Paul was a fair-skinned boy, with short black hair cropped in neat, even bangs and the redness of cheeks that comes from adoring relatives pinching his face and saying, “Look at that lovely little face! Why, we could just EAT HIM UP, yes we could!” For a time, Paul lived in fear of being fattened up and devoured, and thus did everything he could to prevent himself from becoming a potentially tasty treat. This was a period which you and I would think of as Paul’s desperate and ongoing attempt to thwart some cannibals, but Paul’s parents simply referred to it as “That time when Paul was such a finicky eater, we have Absolutely No Idea how he managed not to starve himself to death, the poor lad—whatever is it that gets into children’s minds?”

Paul’s father, as we noted, was full of magic and mischief, while his mother was full of the ability to tolerate magic and mischief. As such they made a superb pair, with Paul’s mother smiling and shaking her head at her husband’s shenanigans. Paul was a bit unclear as to exactly what his father’s profession was. Patrick simply said that he was a paid, professional liar. Paul would ask various of his friends what a paid, professional liar was, and he would receive answers ranging from barrister to politician to writer to clergyman, depending upon the friend’s age and level of cynicism. His mother, all curls and patient amusement, mainly seemed to exist to say “Oh come now, my dear, really!” in an ongoing endeavor to bring Paul’s father up short. It never worked for long.

Paul’s sense of time, however, changed utterly, as did his world, with the arrival and startlingly quick departure of Bonnie.

Bonnie first made herself known to Paul when he was lying on the couch in the family drawing room, gazing at the blazing fire in the fireplace one chilly autumn London night. His head was resting on his mother’s lap, and she was gently stroking him about the shoulders and cooing soft words about what a kind and loving and excellent boy he was. It was at that moment that his mother’s stomach kicked him in the back of the head. This was an unusual occurrence in and of itself, augmented by his mother’s abruptly calling out for Paul’s father and announcing, “She kicked!” Paul was puzzled by his mother’s suddenly referring to her stomach as “she,” and his bewilderment only grew as his parents sat him down and explained to him that a baby was growing in his mother’s stomach. A baby girl, his mother insisted, although his father said that they didn’t know yet, but his mother said they did—or at least she did—and that was quite enough for her.

Paul gazed in wonderment at the passenger within his mother’s stomach. He was quite distressed to discover that she (for he had taken to calling her “she” since his mother seemed so confident) was bereft of clothing and toys, and at one point he came to his mother with some outgrown baby clothes of his and a rattle that he’d found during a walk in Kensington Gardens. He proffered the treasures to his mother and urged her to swallow them so the baby could clothe herself properly and have something to play with besides. This caused great laughter in his mother and his father, and for all those cannibalistic relatives whenever the story was told and retold. Paul never understood quite why it was funny, but since he liked bringing smiles to peoples’ faces, he never let it bother him too much.

He watched with continued fascination as his mother’s belly expanded in a manner that he never would have thought possible. As it did so, Colleen would spend inordinate amounts of time reading both to Paul and to his soon-to-be-sibling. It was not as if she had been stingy with her reading time before a baby had been placed into her stomach through mysterious means. But now she read far more often and even told Paul to join in. She said that it was wise to familiarize his little (probable) sister with the sound of his voice so she would not be completely bewildered as to who was who when she finally was removed from her place of residence by the doctor (through other equally mysterious means).

Colleen would read the tales of fancy that Paul’s father foisted upon them, although always with one eyebrow raised in grudging patience over such frivolousness. The aforementioned elves and leprechauns and mermaids—and jolly rousing adventures of piracy and wild Indians and such—paraded through the lad’s active imagination. And every day he would go out in the backyard and pass the tales on to whatever animals happened to be lounging about.

Still in all, Patrick’s practice of speaking tales pulled wholly from his memory rather than refracted through the prism of another storyteller were the ones that Paul truly adored, because they were more personal. And of all those, the tales of which he was the most fond were the ones involving the individual who had achieved fame far and wide as “The Boy.” The most splendid boy in the world, as he would not have hesitated to tell you given the slightest opportunity.

There was some confusion as to The Boy’s whereabouts, according to Paul’s father. He said that some claimed The Boy was an infant who rode on a goat in Kensington Gardens after lock-out, playing his pipes and cavorting with the woodland sprites that supposedly populated the area. Other times, The Boy was reputed to reside in a land called the Anyplace, which could be reached by flying to the third star on the left and continuing until morning. When Paul asked eagerly if his father had ever encountered The Boy personally, his father became very quiet and then seemed wistful, as if he was either remembering something he had accidentally forgotten or trying to forget something he had no desire to remember. Finally, instead of responding with a simple yes or no, he asked Paul if he thought he might have run into him in the course of his dreams.

Paul considered it for a time, and then said he had some vague memory, as a number of youngsters did, that had something to do with The Boy during one cloudless night. His mother had come into his room and woken him, and told him that he had been creating a frightful ruckus by clapping his hands together in his sleep and shouting, “I believe! I believe in pixies!” Paul had no recollection of doing so, and could not fathom why he might have; but his mother just sighed in some odd, knowing way and said, “It probably had something to do with the Anyplace,” and then settled him back down to sleep.

“Well, if the Anyplace was involved, there’s every likelihood that The Boy was as well. Maybe the pixie involved was his.”

“The Boy had a pixie!”

“Oh yes,” Patrick said. “And redskins who combated him and an enemy named Hack, a pirate with a hatchet instead of a right hand, who was so vile that even Long John Silver feared him. And others, but their names blur,” he said with a frown. “The memories one takes from the Anyplace are fluid at best, vapor at worst.”

The Boy sounded like a perfectly marvelous fellow to Paul. It was hard to dislike someone who flew and dispatched pirates and cavorted with redskins and pixies and such. Still, in some ways Paul disapproved of him; for, by all accounts, The Boy was a showy fellow, and uncaring, and really not all that heroic unless it suited his vanity. Paul was of the opinion that if one was going to be a hero, it should be from selflessness, not selfishness. His stated beliefs had prompted Colleen to say, “You are quite wise beyond your years, Paul. Well done and keep at it, and you shall be a grown-up in no time!”

When she said that, Paul felt a chill wind blow across his spine. He had no idea why that should be so.

That evening, lying in his bed in his nursery, he thought he heard something. A voice, perhaps, calling to him. It wasn’t speaking his name, though. Instead it was making sounds . . . animal sounds. A lion growling and then a clucking like a bird, followed by a crowing as if from a rooster. None of them sounded remotely like “Paul” and yet, in an odd way, they all did.

He slid out of his bed and crawled around upon the floor, looking under the bed to see if the sounds were originating from there. When he couldn’t find them, he stood and glanced around in the darkness, modified by only the illumination that came from the night-light his mother insisted be in his room.

Then he saw a movement in the mirror. His reflection, he would have thought, except he swayed back and forth experimentally and the reflection stayed right where it was, a smug grin on its face and an impish twinkle in its eyes.

Paul might have been dreaming or might not; he was in one of those places where the borders between the two became indistinguishably thin, but he did not know that. Slowly he crept toward the mirror, staring fixedly at it. His reflection continued to gaze back at him, chin pointed upward in a defiant manner.

“Hullo,” said Paul cautiously. “Are you . . . him?”

“Are you?” said the reflection. Then it stuck its tongue out at Paul, at which Paul was slightly taken aback. Paul was generally well behaved and well schooled, so it was odd to see himself acting in such a manner.

“I don’t think so,” Paul said.

“Then how am I supposed to know?”

Paul was mildly irritated at the vagueness of the exchange. “Look here,” he said firmly, “I asked you a question. You don’t have to play games.”

The reflection laughed. “If you think I don’t have to play games, then no wonder you don’t know if I’m him or you’re him. You don’t know anything important!”

“I do so,” Paul said defensively. “I know—”

“Stop,” said the lad in the mirror, holding up his hand in a preemptive manner. “Are you about to rattle off all sorts of things from school?”

“Well . . . yes.”

The reflection turned away, making a dismissive, snorting noise. Then Paul suddenly said, “Oh! And I know about gnomes and pixies and—and The Boy . . . which is who I think you are.”

The lad in the mirror snapped back and grinned, and then vaulted straight up, leaving a bewildered Paul craning his neck and trying to see where he’d gone. Then The Boy dropped back into view and bowed deeply. “So you are him,” Paul said.

“Am I truly marvelous?”


“Then who else would I be?” said The Boy, flashing his pearly baby teeth. He leaned forward, motioning for Paul to do the same. For a moment, Paul thought The Boy was going to pull him right through the mirror. Instead The Boy looked him up and down and stroked his chin thoughtfully. Paul mimicked the gesture as if he were the reflection and The Boy the reality, which for all he knew might be the case.

“There is some me in you,” The Boy said at last, “although not much. A passing resemblance at most.”

“You think so?”

“Maybe. Or maybe I’m lying. I am, after all, half brother to Coyote, the trickster god.” The Boy always made boasts along those lines whenever his veracity was questioned. In this case, it was indeed a lie, because being Paul’s reflection, he was in fact identical. Then, his voice soft and edged with the echoes of a thousand crafty plans, he said, “Would you like to learn some things?”

“Yes, please.”

So The Boy taught him.

This happened repeatedly over a series of nights, although since Paul spent them in that delicate dividing line between sleep and dream, he lost track of how many and how often. His parents did not notice for the most part, although his father did look rather surprised when— while telling Paul about various adventures The Boy had had—Paul offered polite but firm corrections or clarifications. Plus there were other talents that Paul acquired, although it wasn’t so much acquiring them as discovering that he had always had them at his command and didn’t know until now, as if waking from a long sleep.

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Tigerheart 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 29 reviews.
Overby More than 1 year ago
if you think oddly named characters that go to oddly named lands is enough to make a story good, this one's for you. The characters are ridiculous and impossible to care about...I made it thru a little over 100 pages and still couldn't figure out if the main character is loonie-crazy or what and it got to the point I didn't care. It's all non-sensical and how it's gotten compared to Peter Pan is beyond me. Do a re-read of Peter Pan instead.....
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If I had wanted to read Peter Pan, I would have bought it. Since when are you allowed to change the names of the characters in a classic, paraphrase it and put your name as author? This was a real disappointment.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Between harriet klausner and the other plot reveals and the kids using the book review site as a playground its hard to get a true review. Klausner and these plot revealers should be banned from posting along with these kids who use this site to play. Come on bn, when are you going to put a stop to this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A well done re-imagining of the Peter Pan story. The narrarator gets a little tedious, but nonetheless a good read.
angie_ranck on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
i really liked the beginning of this book(the reason for 3 stars instead of 2) but once paul reached The Anyplace it was all downhill from there. maybe it's just me though, i don't like the original Peter Pan all that much either.
PitcherBooks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
If you haven't read the original two versions of Peter Pan by James Barrie, I'd recommend doing so first. Not required but you'd probably enjoy this gem of a book even more so if you do. Totally love the author's story-telling style and this is a worthy 'sequel' to the original Peter Pans. I think if Barrie were alive today, he'd be quite pleased also with this edition! Of course, if you don't care for the originals (shame on you!), you might as well skip this one. Either you have the heart for it... or you don't... So even tho my bookshelves are jammed as it is, I'm making room for this one. It's a keeper!
bigorangemichael on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Not exactly a sequel and not exactly a retelling of the Peter Pan story, Peter David's "Tigerheart" is more of a reimagined modernization of the classic story along the lines of his King Arthur trilogy and "Howling Mad." David succeeds beautifully at weaving the story of Peter Pan for a modern audience. But instead of focusing on Peter as the central character, David creates his own, Paul Dear. Early in the story, Paul's baby sister dies, causing a rift between his parents and their separation. Determined to make his mother happy again, Paul sets out to Anywhere to find a new sister and bring her home to his mother. Along the way, he meet the Boy, who is the kind of Anywhere, refusing to grow up, self-centered and having fantastic adventures. David tells the story in a omniscient narrator voice with brilliant asides to the audience. The story is modern but also timeless with references to modern day drugs to stop little boys from having fantastic adventures in their imagination. But while it does have those hints of the modern world, the storytelling and the universe are timeless.If you're familiar with Peter Pan either from the popular Disney movie or from the J.M. Barie original story, you're in for a treat with David's unique take on the story. Reading "Tigerheart," I found myself wishing David had written this years ago so that it would have been adapted for the big-screen as "Hook" instead of the movie we got. Seeing Steven Spielberg create this world would have been wonderful.While it's marketed for young adults, I have to say that "Tigerheart" is a joy and delight for anyone who hasn't or doesn't want to lose touch with their inner child. One of the best books I've read this year and one that I heartily recommend.
readinggeek451 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A very original take on the Peter Pan story, full of sly asides and contemporary relevance. It should appeal to a wide range of readers from preteens to adults.
LiteraryFeline on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
One of the houses my family lived in while I was growing up had a living room (as opposed to the family room) that was free of furniture except for a chair and several bookcases. It served as a playroom for my brother and I. I would often set up cities and neighborhoods for my paper dolls and barbies or my brother's cars (which I loved to play with too). Other times my brother and I would build our own boats and pretend the red carpet was the raging sea. We went on adventure after adventure.And so it was with those memories in mind that I entered the Anyplace, a world where imagination and belief in a bit of magic are more than just pretend play. When I first heard about Peter David's Tigerheart a couple of years ago, I was excited about reading it. Somehow though I never managed to get to it. Until now. I confess my enthusiasm had waned some and upon reading the synopsis on the back cover, I wasn't sure I was really interested in reading it anymore. The story itself sounded interesting, but the idea of reading a book that is sort of a spin off of another (the author refers to it as a pastiche), more famous story was off putting. Still, I figured I'd at least give it a try and see how far I could get.I was pulled in from the very first and never looked back from there. This is one of those books that is aimed for all ages. As I read, I could see myself sharing the story with my daughter while at the same time, the novel is written in such a way that appealed to me as an adult as well.I doubt there are many people out there who have not heard of J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan. His story is legendary. Peter Pan is the boy who never grew up. His adventures with Wendy and her brothers are known all over the world. I have never read Barrie's book although I have seen various versions of the story in movie form. Author Peter David's love for the story of Peter Pan began in his childhood and extended into his adulthood. He loved J.M. Barrie's story and decided to continue it in his own way, while at the same time paying homage to the original.Although the familiar famous names are different in Tigerheart, there is no doubting which character represents the original ones. Captain Hook has become Captain Hack; Gweeny used to be Wendy; Tinkerbell is now Fiddlefix; and Peter Pan has become simply The Boy. The hero of the novel, however, and who the story really is about is Paul Dear.Paul grew up on stories about the Anyplace and The Boy. His father encouraged him to believe while his mother would rather he grow up and forget all that nonsense. Everything in Paul's experience tells him the stories are true--for he has seen The Boy with his very own eyes. He was spent time with the pixies. When tragedy strikes his family, his world is turned upside down. His mother is severely unhappy and Paul is determined to do what he can to make her happy again. With the help of the pixie Fiddlefix, Paul flies off to the Anyplace one night, much to the chagrin of his mother.What follows is an assortment of quests and adventures. There are pirates and sirens, a great white tiger, the Piccas, the Bully Boys, shadows, and, of course, The Boy. It a wonderfully fun story, full of humor and hijinks. The novel also has its serious side, however, centering around the themes of growing up, among other things.In many respects I thought of Paul and The Boy as being two sides of one coin, both so much alike and yet very different. They both love adventure and are brave and imaginative. The Boy and Paul have very different philosophies about growing up. Paul knows it is inevitable and accepts it, even welcomes it. The Boy, on the other hand, wants nothing to do with growing up. He wants to hold onto the magic of childhood forever. He'd been betrayed by an adult and sees adults as the cause of all the world's ills.The adult in me raised an eyebrow at how the novel came to an end, but the child in me was quite delighted. Still, it seemed fitting for the type of tale it was.
horomnizon on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Absolutely marvelous! A great fantasy book based on the character of Peter Pan, here simply 'the Boy'. Not just another take off on the same old story, but a whole newly imagined tale. Lots of fun - the narrator draws you in to the story and is quite humorous. Would be great fun read aloud to younger children and is a delight for all ages. I loved it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great story! I love this twist of a classic tale!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved they way this was writen!!!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excuse me but how is this legal? Kids, read peter pan and forget this book, it would be like you making a drawing and the kid next to you photocopied it, drew over it and turned it in. How mad would you be? What's happening in the book world? Topsy turvy !
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very cool read! There are times I laughed, got mad and even teary eyed along with the characters. The book is similar to Peter Pan but so much deeper. Overall, great book.
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Zuanie More than 1 year ago
Paul Dear is a sweet boy whose family is a perfect portrait of happiness. But that picture is broken with the disappearance of his baby sister. Through the ambiguous suggestion of the narration, one can guess that she was fatally ill. Overwhelmed with anguish, Paul's mother began to neglect his needs. And with increasing tension between the Dear's spouses, his father also moves out of their house. In solitude, Paul seeks comfort from the animals and from his dream. Yes, he is a special child who can speak the language of animals and go on adventures within the boundary of dreams. If that is all the story offers, isn't it just another Where the wild things are kind of book. But that is not the case. Paul's devotion to his mother urges him to take on the quest of finding another newborn baby to replace the one they have lost. And where else is a better place to look for a child than the Neverland, or the Anyplace as it's called in this particular book? Tigerheart reminds me of Pan's Labyrinth; it's a story about children, if not necessarily for children. It leads readers to a world full of vibrant, never-ending adventures with insidious fairies, talking animals, valiant Indian, salvage pirates, and not to mention, The Boy that never grows up. Yet at times, that world is so grim and violent. More often I found myself overwhelmed with melancholy or at loss at the cruel realism the story displays. "Oh gosh, no child should go through such heart-breaking or horrible experience" is what I kept thinking. Therefore, despite that many critics have praised Tigerheart as "the book for all ages", I am still uncertain whether it makes a suitable bedtime story for children under 10. That is not to say Tigerheart is a bad book, more likely the opposite. It's one of the most creative retellings of the ever-loved Peter Pan. Although in the book, Paul is the hero, Peter Pan is the second lead. Unlike the children travelling to the Anyplace to avoid adulthood, Paul's adventure is mature and selfless as his ultimate goal is to make his mother happy once again. Tigerheart flows effortlessly with creative narration and witty comments, lending subtle wisdom to the story without being preachy. I came to the book with an expectation for a conventional children lit. You know, the type of books with carefree escapades and triumphs awaiting the heroes at the end. And this fixative belief is what constantly shook me up. Tigerheart is nothing as such. As I've mentioned above, there is more than a grain of realistic symbolism in the story. Paul's quest is not always joyful; it's plagued with regret and somewhat violent death of both friends and foes. It turns out that David Peter is an avid comic writer, now that explains a lot about the warfare-and-violence feeling I've been sensing throughout the book. However, at its very core, Tigerheart is a beautiful story about both the pain and the joy of growing up, and yet know that your day of adventure will never stop just because you're an adult. It's a heartbreaking yet profound sentiment I can relate to.