3.75 / 5 stars
Series: Chronicles of Alice #1
Author: Christina Henry
Publisher: Titan Books
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Horror/Retelling
Release Date: 28th June 2016
Source: Provided by publisher
A summary (courtesy of the all-knowing GoodReads):
In a warren of crumbling buildings and desperate people called the Old City, there stands a hospital with cinderblock walls which echo with the screams of the poor souls inside.In the hospital, there is a woman. Her hair, once blonde, hangs in tangles down her back. She doesn’t remember why she’s in such a terrible place-just a tea party long ago, and long ears, and blood…Then, one night, a fire at the hospital gives the woman a chance to escape, tumbling out of the hole that imprisoned her, leaving her free to uncover the truth about what happened to her all those years ago.Only something else has escaped with her. Something dark. Something powerful.And to find the truth, she will have to track this beast to the very heart of the Old City, where the rabbit waits for his Alice.
My thoughts on this dark retelling of Alice in Wonderland.
First of all just wanted to warn you; if rape/murder/violence is a trigger in any way, I wouldn’t go picking this book up.
Secondly, if you’re expecting a straight retelling, you will be very surprised. This book has all the essential characters from Alice in Wonderland, but the story takes quite a different direction.
Alice is a dark, creepy book that follows Alice (uh, duh) as she manages to escape from an insane asylum. She is surrounded by a rich world of murderous, creepy characters and magic galore. This is definitely a horror novel, which if I’d done a teensy bit more research, I would’ve known before going in.
But it was the perfect read for October, and I adored the re-imagined characters, like Chesire and the Caterpillar. I really enjoyed seeing Alice portrayed as a capable, kick-ass character (which does of course make her markedly different from the original Alice). It’s definitely a gory story which follows quite a clear plot, although some of the character’s decisions had me rolling my eyes (like really, was that the BEST IDEA YOU COULD COME UP WITH?!).
There wasn’t so much a character development arc as a ‘recovering lost memories’ arc; which is fine, but I would’ve preferred to see Alice grow a little bit. However all of the characters were very interesting, creepy and dark, and I LOVED IT.
All in all, I really enjoyed this book. It was a pretty fast read, considering that some parts of the plot dragged a bit. Would recommend it, but don’t go in expecting butterflies and happiness, it’s more…..darkness and death. But anyways, that’s all for now.