San Diego, CA (PRWEB) October 20, 2013
"To reveal who he really was would even at this date set the country in a blaze." These are the words of James Barrie, referring to Peter Pan's nemesis, Captain Hook. A new book, Peter: The Untold True Story, promises to shed new light on the origins of the characters in Barrie's classic fairy tale. Connecting the real-life figure of Peter the Wild Boy with the fictional character of Peter Pan, the epic tale spans more than seventy years, exploring the real personalities and events of Peter the Wild Boy's life, over a century before Barrie wrote his legend.
James Barrie hinted in his own writing that the legend of Peter began long before the fairy tale was written. Mysteriously, in the introduction to his published work, James Barrie suggested that he could not recall writing Peter Pan, his most famous character. Perhaps that is because before Peter became a fictional character, he was a real-life Wild Boy, who lived more than a century before Barrie wrote his fairy tale.
Barrie wrote in the story of Peter Pan that before going to Neverland, Peter resided at Kensington Gardens amongst the fairies. The history of the fairies at Kensington Gardens traces back to an 18th century poem by Thomas Tickell called "Kensington Gardens." The epic poem featured an infant boy who was adopted and raised by fairies. Interestingly this poem was written in 1722, only a few years before Peter the Wild Boy came to London. As a guest of the Royal Family, Peter occasionally roamed Kensington Gardens' hundreds of acres. Peter the Wild Boy was a charming, intuitive feral child discovered living alone in the German forest of Hamelin. Peter's innocent spirit won King George's interest and appreciation. The King and his family hoped to educate the Wild Boy, helping him to grow up and become a proper English gentleman.
The era in which Peter the Wild Boy lived was one that surely would have interested Barrie. It was the end of the Golden Age of Piracy, when pirates clashed with the naval power of the British Empire. It was also a time in which Indians from America were visitors to the Royal Court. It was the Age of Enlightenment, when science and reason were conquering the unknown, the mysterious and the wild. In the midst of this era, Peter the Wild Boy stood in the Royal Court as a prominent, curious anomaly.
Breathing life into 18th century events, author Christopher Mechling takes readers on a journey of discovery, from the Enchanted Forest of Hamelin, to the grim House of Corrections at Celle, to the beauty of Herrenhausen Palace, to the banks of the Thames River, to the Royal Palaces in London, and beyond, with a cast including the British Royal Family and many of the brightest minds of the era. Narrated by The Princess Caroline of Great Britain, the novel begins,
“All children grow up, all but one. His name is Peter and by now, all the civilized world has heard of him. He has captured the public imagination and become a legend, a subject for poets, philosophers and psychologists to write about, and for children to dream of. The children’s tales might be lacking in some details, but on the whole they are more accurate than most other accounts, for children will always understand Peter intuitively, as I did when I first met him.
"I shall endeavor to tell you the true story of my friend Peter, because he cannot tell it to you himself. Afterward I hope you will love him and defend him as I have for the remainder of your days. Pass on to others a true account of the wild boy who would not grow up, who danced with kings and won the hearts of princesses. He defied logic and reason, lived and loved with an innocent heart, and found peace in the midst of a turbulent world.”
Peter is a magical, poignant tale full of humor, love, and courage in the face of life's difficulties. It will make you laugh, cry, dream and remember what it means to be young. Available in hardcover from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, and at the author’s website (where signed copies are currently offered). It is also available as an e-book through the Apple iBookstore and Amazon Kindle.