Author: Gregory Maguire
Published: October 27, 2015 by William Morrow (Harper Collins)
(Amazon / Goodreads)
Synopsis: From the multi-million-copy bestselling author of Wicked comes a magical new twist on Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, published to coincide with the 150th anniversary of Lewis's Carroll's beloved classic
When Alice toppled down the rabbit-hole 150 years ago, she found a Wonderland as rife with inconsistent rules and abrasive egos as the world she left behind. But what of that world? How did 1860s Oxford react to Alice's disappearance?
In this brilliant new work of fiction, Gregory Maguire turns his dazzling imagination to the question of underworlds, undergrounds, underpinnings — and understandings old and new, offering an inventive spin on Carroll's enduring tale. Ada, a friend of Alice's mentioned briefly in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, is off to visit her friend, but arrives a moment too late — and tumbles down the rabbit hole herself.
Ada brings to Wonderland her own imperfect apprehension of cause and effect as she embarks on an odyssey to find Alice and see her safely home from this surreal world below the world. If Euridyce can ever be returned to the arms of Orpheus, or Lazarus can be raised from the tomb, perhaps Alice can be returned to life. Either way, everything that happens next is After Alice
*** I recieved an advanced copy of this book from the publisher at BEA. This fact has not changed my opinion. ***
I'm a big fan of Gregory Maguire. I have read many of his books over the years and he continues to entertain me with interesting takes on beloved classics. To me, he is the master of the retelling. So when I saw that he would be at BEA with copies of his new book, I of course had to get my hands on a copy. I was excited to see his take on Wonderland and I was not disappointed.To me, this book is classic Gregory Maguire.
But I will say I did find the constantly back and forth of the locations to be a bit problematic in terms of the plot development. The two stories connected well but when we were in one place I found myself missing the other. Well honestly, I found myself missing Wonderland. I did like that the book looked at what it may have been like for those around Alice when she went missing, but it detracted a bit from the Wonderland storyline. This way we didn't really get to see things there as much as I would have liked. If it was just in Oxford maybe with a small bit at each chapter from Alice in Wonderland that would have been interesting. But with the two different locations it made things hard to follow at times. I enjoyed both sides but with such a short book I felt like there really wasn't enough time to develop either side.
But on the whole, After Alice was a good and a really interesting retelling. It was great to read another book from a favorite author and see his take on a new and different fantasy world.
Buy/Borrow/Bypass: Buy/Borrow. This is not really the kind of book for a casual reader who likes retellings. I would definitely recommend it to those who are fans of Alice in Wonderland though. It's a unique spin on the classic and you get to see the story from a few different angles. I would also recommend it to fans of Gregory Maguire. It has his style all over it and if you are a fan, like me, I think you will enjoy it.
Have you read After Alice? What did you think? Leave me a comment with your thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY READING!