Saturday, October 24, 2015

Book Review: ALICE TAKES BACK WONDERLAND by David D. Hammons


Title: Alice Takes Back Wonderland
Author: David D. Hammons
Category/Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
My Star Rating: 4/5

Goodreads Blurb: 

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.


**I received a complimentary ecopy of this book in exchange for a honest review**

I don't watch much television, but one show I absolutely can not miss every week is ONCE UPON A TIME.  I'm in love with the way all the fairy-tales I grew up with are twisted and interwoven in ways that defy imagination.  That said, I was not a big fan of the spin off ONCE WONDERLAND.  I found it too drawn out and simple, doing no justice whatsoever to the show it was spawned from.  ALICE TAKES BACK WONDERLAND is like a wonderful adaptation of ONCE WONDERLAND.  One that I might actually watch and enjoy.  Like the show, this story begins with Alice in an asylum, having medication shoved down her throat in hopes of making her forget the make-believe nonsense she believes to be her memories.  And, like the show, as soon as she begins to believe that maybe she is a little bit wackadoodle, she takes one more trip down the rabbit hole.  
This is where  Mr. Hammons breathes his own life into the story, making it his own.  He successfully re-introduces us to the characters we think we already know, and connects the classics together into one imaginative, thrilling ride.  Most of the villains we think we know are nothing like the "echoes" we have heard while tucked in our beds; on the contrary, the majority of them are heartfelt victims of circumstance deserving of our sympathy (Pinocchio's father got me right in the feels!).  Each individual is woven into a web of personal complexity-- there is no "good" and "evil.  Life isn't that black and white.  And Alice is a creature worthy of her own praise.  She is a brave, fantastic young American girl in this adaptation.  

There were a few parts where I feel as though the story lulled, but overall this was a delightful spin on several of my favorite childhood stories. 

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