Great Reads brings you book reviews on teen books that parents will love from such great young adult authors as Garth Nix, Clare Dunkle, DJ Machale, Stephanie Meyer and many more.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

The Looking Glass Wars: Frank Beddor

"The Looking Glass Wars" is a great retelling of the "Alice in Wonderland" story as if it really happened.

Young Alyss Heart is princess of Wonderland. Her mother rules the Queendom with a fair hand, but danger is lurking. Redd, the queen's sister, believes she should be the ruler (she is the oldest, but her penchant for Black Imagination, similar to black magic, made their mother banish her and give the Queendom to Genevieve). On the day of Alyss' seventh birthday, Redd launches an assault on the castle, killing her parents. Alyss flees with her bodyguard, Hatter Madigan to the Pool of Tears. Not knowing where it will take them (any who go into the water never return) they jump. They are separated, however, and the Pool takes Alyss to Victorian England, where for some time she lives as a beggar, and then is later adopted by the Liddell's who change her name to Alice.

Hatter ends up in France where in self-defense he hurts many men and creates a legend that spreads as he travels searching for Alyss. Alyss, meanwhile, meets Reverend Dodgson, also known as Lewis Carroll, who promises to take Alyss' story and turn it into a book so that people will believe her. But he changes the truth so much, she knows that no one will ever believe her as he has turned the tragic events of her life into a fanciful farce.

"The Looking Glass Wars" is reminiscent of "Wicked" by Gregory Maguire (who took "The Wizard of Oz" and told the true story of what really happened and who the Wicked Witch of the West really was--one of my absolute favorites). I loved the world he created and then, knowing the story of "Alice in Wonderland" so well, finding out how Lewis Carroll corrupted it in the realm of Beddor's story. There is much more to the story than I've talked about here and/ I would definitely recommend it as a great book, however I would recommend it for ages 10 and up (it is really geared towards adults). Just be is the first in a trilogy, so you'll be looking at buying three books :).



Anonymous said...

Hi I am very interested in your blog. However, because of the background it is just too difficult to read.

Automatic said...

Many thanks for your enthusiastic leap into the Pool of Tears assisting Princess Alyss and Royal Bodyguard Hatter Madigan with their harrowing adventures into pop culture.

We would like to share with you new revelations from Wonderland as they come into the Looking Glass Wars Library and Hatter M Institute. If you’re interested in receiving this confidential material, before it becomes public, please supply a secure email address.

The LGW Librarian