More than “a cracker-jack detective story and courtroom drama”, though I thank and will quote the reviewer again, in this book “a post-apocalyptic America chooses between reason and superstition as it revives a lost literary heritage in this beguiling fantasy [featuring] a fully realized culture and a quasi-Shakespearean diction that’s vigorous and musical without being fusty or quaint [and] an engrossing yarn that embeds an off-kilter perspective on history in rich language and storytelling.” You also get metafictional parodies, fantasy satirizing the belief in fantasy – and jokes to boot.
There comes a time in every good theme's life when it begins to turn in upon itself. If one begins to think that the Canterbury Tales in Neverland is about "story" and then later you expand that to something like "story is our most important source of information and our most unreliable" and then you begin to think of experimental fiction asking "what is a story and who is really telling it" then you run the risk of someday six characters in search of a play taking over your novel.
The title of The Canterbury Tales in Neverland quite explicitly calls attention to the fact that everything from the poetry of Geoffrey Chaucer to the latest movie re-make of Peter Pan resonates in my work. The Canterbury Tales in Neverland also resonates with the theme of the epistemological quandaries of storytelling. Stories, whether passed down through the ages or made up afresh over a campfire, are the sources of knowledge with which the characters wrestle every step of the way. The struggle, whether with reading Chaucer and Shakespeare or arguing with friends and enemies, is an essential part of our edification, our education that never ends.