Oh my. This book, y’all.
I’ve mentioned before what a huge Cinderella story freak I am, but have I made it clear that I’m also a huge Alice fan?
I mean, I feel like you should know that, what with all my Jabberwocky mentions, the salivating over doing the Dinner and a Movie for Alice: Through the Looking Glass and all the tea parties I insist you throw.
Maybe you’ve not been paying attention, though. So let me just tell you, I heart all things Wonderland.
And Alice Takes Back Wonderland by David D. Hammons is no exception, my friends. In fact, it’s topping my list of Alice re-writes right now.
Wonderland is getting wonky
Needless to say, when I sat down to read Alice Takes Back Wonderland from Curiosity Quills Press, I wasn’t just uber-excited, I was size-of-the-Red-Queen’s-head excited. I was 50-foot-tall-Alice excited. And Hammons did not disappoint.
My first impression of this incredible book was to be wowed by the way Alice’s mind works. Seriously, Hammons must surely have majored in Lewis Carroll to get it so spot-on. (And I mean, honestly, if there is a Lewis Carroll major somewhere, where do I sign up? Because you can never have enough education, my friends. Especially in the cool stuff.)
But this Alice isn’t exactly the Alice we know. Well… she is and she isn’t. It seems the world of Fairy Tale is connected to us by a wormhole (AKA the rabbit hole), and time is wonky there. So the stories we know about Alice in Wonderland is the echo of an adventure taken by a 21st century girl. She’s 17 now, and she’s been on pills for schizophrenia and ADHD since she was seven. See, just like so often happens on our world, her wonder is mistaken for insanity. And Alice’s mother and doctors believe the poor girl is insane. So she takes her pills and she doesn’t go back to Wonderland.
One day the White Rabbit shows up at her house and the pills aren’t making him go away. So once more Alice follows the rabbit down the rabbit hole. But Wonderland is not like she remembers it. It’s full of people, not animals and inanimate objects that talk. Whenever she sees what appear to be normal Wonderland citizens, they’re being carted off. And the scenery? Why it’s a cityscape. I mean whaaaaaat?
The Wonder is being taken out of Wonderland. The Ace of Spades has taken over and he wants his world to be like our world.
Sounds boring, doesn’t it? Yeah, well, Alice thinks so, too.
But it’s not only Wonderland facing danger
When the Mad Hatter gets Alice out of a serious scrape, everything changes. How? When Hatter tells Alice, “Second star to the right and straight on till morning.”
That was my first clue that this is a very different version of Wonderland. Wonderland is on a planet full of fairy tales. And yeah, Alice enlists Peter Pan to help her fight the Ace of Spades.
Just wait till you meet Pinocchio. This book has All The Things.
Adventure and loyalty and new friends and some pretty creepy bad guys. Well-fleshed characters and lots of references to lots of the stories we all know and love.
And the Sleeping Beauty? It’s not what you think.
I truly believe this book would be enjoyable for any age or gender. If you or your littles adore fairy tales like I do, jump on my bandwagon. Head on over to Curiosity Quills and pick yourself up a copy. You will thank me.