Tiger Lily and the Secret Treasure of Neverland

Disney. Mar. 2023. 288p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781368080460.
Gr 3-5–Dimaline (The Marrow Thieves) provides vibrancy and substance to a chronically badly represented character in children’s literature—Tiger Lily. Her latest novel spotlights the titular tween as she utilizes her sharp wit and acuity to outsmart the devilish pirates who have captured her best friend, Sashi, in their hunt for everlasting youth. While Tiger Lily rushes to save her fairy friend, she grapples with her own fears around growing up, which is something that only members of her community can choose to do in Neverland. Dimaline successfully gives Tiger Lily, her Indigenous community, and the Lost Boys robust identities outside of the perennially famous Peter Pan. The book, slated for release one month prior to the live-action Peter Pan & Wendy on Disney+, offers readers more time with the crossover characters. In a short introduction, Dimaline specifically states that Tiger Lily is native to Neverland and is not based on any one Indigenous community. Some facets of Tiger Lily’s culture, including housing (e.g., teepees) and customs (e.g., collecting sweetgrass), are recognizable nods to myriad North American Indigenous peoples. Ultimately, this is an enjoyable adventure that should appeal to Disney fans and could be a good choice for a family read-aloud.
VERDICT Recommended for larger collections and where longer Disney books fly off the shelves.

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