Alice Takes Back Wonderland by David D. Hammons
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Release date: Sept. 28th 2015
Genres: Fairytale retellings, fantasy
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*Thanks to Curiosity Quills for the review copy*
Okay, let's face it. Fairytale retellings are IN this year. The genre has dominated most of the YA books released in 2015. And when I saw that this book was a whole load of fairytales all mixed up into one giant magical fruit salad, Disney style, my first thought was, "oooh, ME WANT!" I headed into this book with some hesitation, though, because, as fun as it may sound, the whole thing could collapse miserably if the author doesn't pull off the premise. BUT. I am happy to say that this book totally met my expectations, and better!
After ten years of being told she can't tell the difference between real life and a fairy tale, Alice finally stops believing in Wonderland. So when the White Rabbit shows up at her house, Alice thinks she's going crazy.
Only when the White Rabbit kicks her down the rabbit hole does Alice realize that the magical land she visited as a child is real.
But all is not well in Wonderland.
The Ace of Spades has taken over Wonderland and is systematically dismantling all that makes it wonderful. Plain is replacing wondrous, logical is replacing magical, and reason is destroying madness. Alice decides she must help the Mad Hatter and all those fighting to keep Wonderland wonderful.
But how can she face such danger when she is just a girl?
Alice must journey across the stars to unite an army. She discovers that fairy tales are real in the magical world beyond the rabbit hole. But they are not the fairy tales she knows.
Fairy tales have dangers and adventures of their own, and Alice must overcome the trials of these old stories if she wants to unite the lands against Ace.
With the help of Peter Pan, Pinocchio, Snow White and heroes old and new, Alice may have the strength to take back Wonderland.
The ideas behind the world-building. It was so imaginative and clever! I loved the author's fresh take on the Alice in Wonderland story, and all the stuff about the wormholes that connect the different worlds and how the fairytales that we all know and love are "echoes" of what really happened. There are so many fun, original ideas behind this book, and I LOVED it!
The characters. I loved them all! (Except Ace, of course. He was a nasty piece of fried Dalek.)
Alice was spunky and extremely likeable, although you DID get the feeling that she didn't know what she was doing, sometimes. There is a big similarity to the original Alice, but that was fine with me.
Peter (Pan) -yes, that Peter Pan, with the Lost Boys and all that jazz - could not have been more perfectly written. Again, his character was not completely in line with the original, since he sounded a bit more grown up than in the J.M. Barrie book, but this is YA, so we have to make some exceptions. Peter was snarky, boyish and terribly sweet.
And then we have Snow White, who, believe me, completely breaks the Disney stereotype, Tinkerbell, Pinocchio and Robin Hood, who were all amazingly portrayed and also a whole other bunch of fairytale characters that were a delight to read about.
My only disappointment was that we didn't get to see much of the Hatter, who appeared suddenly out of nowhere and then disappeared just as fast.
The plot. I loved how all the fairytales were connected to each other. They were all blended together seamlessly, and created one great story. There were certain places in the novel that slightly dragged, especially on the beginning, but I'm willing to overlook that.
Alice Takes Back Wonderland was a wonderful mix of fairytales retold into one story. If I were to describe this book in one word, it would be "fun". This book was an extremely entertaining read, and I highly recommend it if you like fairytale retellings.
Do you like fairytale retellings? Don't you think it's awesome when they get all mixed up into one story? Do you think this book could live up to the original Alice story? Share your love of fairytales with me!