This was a beautiful retelling of one of our childhood classics, Alice in Wonderland. It had such a gothic feel to it that I was instantly captivated by its beauty. It went on to point out that not everything has a happily ever after and that are nightmares can come to life. That’s the best part of any tale that’s been retold. When the author goes in and changes it to what they think the story should have been like. They describe things that haven’t happened and add characters with strange backgrounds. That’s what A. G. Howard did and what an amazing retelling at that. I was very impressed by this novel and I’m especially glad that I decided to pick this novel up. Because not only did it get me hooked to it, but it’s got countless others in its grip too. That’s how a novel should go and by God that’s how it went.
Now starting with a particularly good character is my personal favorite Alyssa. Alyssa is our new take on the original Alice. She’s been raised by her father for quite some time now, because her mother was admitted into an insane asylum. After an accident with a butterfly her mother sliced open Alyssa’s hands with gardening shears. Ever since then Alyssa’s always wears long gloves over her hands to hide her scars. Alyssa is a spunky little thing that loves to make mosaics out of dead bugs. The bugs and flowers talk to her, so to silence them she uses them in her artwork. They’ve driven her to the point that she thinks that she’s insane, just like her mother. However, her neighbor Jeb thinks that she’s anything but insane, and will always try to prove it to her. He’s been by her side since they were both pretty young and they’d do anything for each other. So when Alyssa is dragged through a mirror it’s only natural that Jeb would try to save her. Once they’re dragged through the mirror they’re then deposited upon the Sundial known to be the portal to Wonderland. Inside Wonderland nothing is what it seems. All of the residents there seem to want to kill them, or do something even worse than them.
This novel would be considered a young adult fantasy novel. In some aspects of the story it’s almost a syfy novel as well. Which just made the story plot that much better. It was really enhanced with all the vivid imaginary that surrounded it. As a reader it made me think about things that I hadn’t considered in a long while. It twists and pulls at your inner child until you finally have to let it go when reading it. Which is how a novel such as this should go. Especially if it was written properly by an exceptional author, which it was. So as far as my recommendation goes for this novel I’d say that it’s a must-read. Especially, for those who like a good twist on a classic novel or a fantasy novel.
*Read on September 8th, 2014