“What about Alice? Did she have a happy ending?”
It’s no secret that I love Christina Henry’s take on Alice and have been eagerly anticipating to read its sequel, Red Queen. Being a lover of the darker arts (I hope this does not change your sunnier opinion of me) (I am no sunny person in any way), Henry’s dark and grotesque version of wonderland hyped me up to read more from her. Yet, as all sequels are, there are bigger things to expect and my high expectations for Red Queen left me enjoying the novel less than its predecessor. Continue reading
Red Queen by Christina Henry
The land outside of the Old City was supposed to be green, lush, hopeful. A place where Alice could finally rest, no longer the plaything of the Rabbit, the pawn of Cheshire, or the prey of the Jabberwocky. But the verdant fields are nothing but ash—and hope is nowhere to be found.
Still, Alice and Hatcher are on a mission to find his daughter, a quest they will not forsake even as it takes them deep into the clutches of the mad White Queen and her goblin or into the realm of the twisted and cruel Black King.
The pieces are set and the game has already begun. Each move brings Alice closer to her destiny. But, to win, she will need to harness her newfound abilities and ally herself with someone even more powerful—the mysterious and vengeful Red Queen…
Publication Date: July 12, 2016
Alice was an enjoying novel and I look forward for more of Henry’s Alice works. It seems like she’ll be adding more fairytales and children’s stories apart from Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. You could read Red Queen’s teaser here.
Hosted by Breaking the Spine
Alice by Christina Henry
A mind-bending new novel inspired by the twisted and wondrous works of Lewis Carroll…
In a warren of crumbling buildings and desperate people called the Old City, there stands a hospital with cinderblock walls which echo the screams of the poor souls inside.
In the hospital, there is a woman. Her hair, once blond, 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. (Goodreads)
Alice is a retelling and not-quite-retelling of Alice in Wonderland. I haven’t read Lewis Carroll’s novels (though I’m working on that) but I think everyone knows the story of Alice and her trip down the rabbit hole. Christina Henry’s version of wonderland is a city rich of violence, prostitution and crime and its characters are unlike from what we have seen. The Caterpillar is a street trafficker, the Cheshire cat is a sly information broker, the Walrus is a cannibal-rapist, Hatcher (the Hatter?) is a crazy axe-murderer and Alice is a rape survivor suffering from post-trauma. It is a darker re-imagining of the original books yet still an exciting read as Alice and Hatcher travel the nooks and hidden corners of the Old City to defeat the monstrous Jabberwocky, discovering fragments of their forgotten pasts along the way.
There was comfort in ignorance, in thinking the world a certain way and not knowing any different.