Alice in Undeadland by Sebastian Gregory
Shortly after her thirteenth birthday, unhappy orphan Alice takes a tumble — off a bridge, and into the Thames. But it seems that her misfortune has only just begun. Because where once was a Wonderland, is now a festering world of the unwanted dead.
Accompanied by a mouse-head bottle top, Alice braves Undeadland, encountering as she does so the Mad Undertaker, the Knave of Broken Hearts, and the dreaded Queen of the Kingdom of Rot. As events take curiouser and curiouser turns, things look bleak for Alice. Will she ever find her way back to the land of the living?
Book Review: This novella is quite the adventure. I love Alice in Wonderland stories. I love them. So I feel reasonably confident that I am qualified to say that this novella is magnificent. It is hauntingly magical.
Tim Burton and Guillermo del Toro should team up and make this a movie. I would love to see that. They would do some interesting camera work as Alice tells Mousehead the story of the Victorian children and the cursed seal. Scary stuff.
This story is interesting and inventive. I never knew where the story was going next. It’s Alice in Wonderland but it’s not. It is its own. All of the characters are there but it isn’t Wonderland. It is Undeadland. It is a place far removed from the original but it is charming in its own gruesome way. Trying to predict where the story was going was like trying to catch smoke. It was there and then it was gone. Just like Undeadland itself, it was a mystery. I won’t even start on what I think about the Rigor Mortis Forest. You can leave at any time and get the book. I wouldn’t blame you one bit.
I was pleased to discover that Alice is level headed in this story. She handles everything that is thrown at her. She’s very mature for thirteen. She’s mature for any age really. The place is spooky. River of Poltergeists? Scary so count me in. The best thing about this story was that things were changed but not unrecognizable. It also recreates the tale and changes it into something new for a new audience. If you can’t tell, I loved it.
Alice in Undeadland also has an unexpected ending that I absolutely loved. It was perfect for this story.
This story is delightfully creepy. It sort of felt like all of my Christmases came at once. Now I’m on to The Asylum for Fairy Tale Creatures.
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