Alyssa Gardner hears the whispers of bugs and flowers—precisely the affliction that landed her mother in a mental hospital years before. This family curse stretches back to her ancestor Alice Liddell, the real-life inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alyssa might be crazy, but she manages to keep it together. For now.
When her mother’s mental health takes a turn for the worse, Alyssa learns that what she thought was fiction is based in terrifying reality. The real Wonderland is a place far darker and more twisted than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, Alyssa must pass a series of tests, including draining an ocean of Alice’s tears, waking the slumbering tea party, and subduing a vicious bandersnatch, to fix Alice’s mistakes and save her family. She must also decide whom to trust: Jeb, her gorgeous best friend and secret crush, or the sexy but suspicious Morpheus, her guide through Wonderland, who may have dark motives of his own.
Splintered by A.G. Howard is the first book in the Splintered series. It is a re-imagining/continuation of the classic fairy tale of Alice in Wonderland. It follows Alyssa, the great-great-great-great granddaughter of Alice who is curesed like the rest of her family that they assume is making them go crazy. After falling down the rabbit hole, Alyssa must pass a series of tests in order to lift the curse from her family and they can finally go back to being normal again.
So can Alyssa pass all the tests and relinquish the curse? Let’s find out!
“No one knows what he or she is capable of until things are at their darkest.”
So I came across this book when it was first released back in 2013, but for the life of me I couldn’t finish it. In the beginning of the novel it progresses very slowly and I guess it just didn’t keep my attention. But as the third book in the series approached the release date I decided to give it another try.
I love the retelling and re-envisioning of old fairy tales, so I pushed through the first couple chapters determined to like this book. And I’m glad I did. This novel is amazing.
It was darker, scarier then the cartoon from Disney and the original story by Lewis Caroll. The Wonderland creatures were exactly that. Creatures. I thought it was a very creative twist on what everyone already knows about the tale. Howard’s writing and world building were splendid. To make a reader such as myself feel like I was actually with Alyssa and Jeb as they journeyed through Wonderland on their adventures was incredible!!
“Sometimes a flame must level a forest to ash before new growth can begin.”
“Because he believes in me. He lets me take chances and learn from them. That’s something a friend does.”
Oh how scary Wonderland really is! The talking flowers are actually zombie human eating flower monsters, The scary spider sisters made me want to crawl under the blankets. Gosh I hate spiders! Howard absolutely took the world of Wonderland and flipped it to a darker/creepier side. I loved every minute of exploring the setting with Alyssa and Jeb. The vivid descriptions made them feel realistic.
I want to leave this review as spoiler free as I can, so I won’t dwell too much into the end story. But damn. That twist at the end through everything in a loop for me. It really is my favorite part about reading novels is to think a story is going to end one way, but the author throws in that last twist at the end. BAM. Story has changed.
SPLINTERED & UNHINGED, & ENSNARED, the first three books in her urbanized /gothic Alice in Wonderland series, are now available from Amulet Books. A companion novel, UNTAMED, launches Dec 2015.