Title: Unbirthday A Twisted Tale
Author: Liz Braswell
What's it about?
What if Wonderland was in peril and Alice was very, very late? In short, chaos and nonsense, which is exactly want Alice finds her self battling!
Years after her first trip to Wonderland, Alice has forgotten much of the details and even the people but she hasn't forgotten is the silliness, the magicalness and the adventure she found in Wonderland and she's on a mission to find those feelings again. As an adult, now, she's also expected to behave like a responsible adult and maybe even find a husband, but Alice would much rather spend her time taking photos and spending time with her Aunt Vivian, even if most people seem to think she's weird. But, when people from Wonderland start to show up on her photos she's taken in England and they don't look like they are of happiness and nonsense. In fact they look...scared and miserable. Now Alice must decide what is real and what is just a dream as she struggles to find a way to find Wonderland again and save the land from the evil queen. But will she have enough time?
Favorite Characters: I'm going to do this a little different by giving you one from England and one from Wonderland.
My favorite character from England is Aunt Vivian (with Mr. Katz a close second). My favorite ting about her is her strength and refusal to conform. She's unmarried, artistically talented, supportive and witty. What a great combination! She also fights for what she believes in. But my most favorite characteristic is she has just the right amount of eccentric-ness to make me fall in love!
My favorite character from Wonderland was the Mad Hatter. He was fun, silly and nostalgic. It was fun seeing him lose his nonsense and try to get it back throughout the book.
Least Favorite Characters: Again, there's two, one from England and one form Wonderland.
My least favorite character from England was Ramsbottom. He was just hateful!
My least favorite character from Wonderland was, the White Rabbit. I know...you thought I was going to say the Queen of Hearts, didn't you! Well, that's fair. I didn't like her, either, but I felt personally betrayed by the White Rabbit. As a kid, he was my favorite character and I expected him to be cute, cuddly and just late like I remember perceiving him as a kid. Apparently, there were things I missed back then.
"That's it!" the Hatter cried. You've filled your head with all the wrong things since you left. You pushed all the good things out. You need to unlearn them. Unremember them." I just love the idea that what we know we've learned and, sometimes, we learn to not believe in something or even ourselves. Sometimes we just need to unlearn what we know and replace it with what is true.
"Change isn't always a bad thing," he said patting her arm for comfort. "There's no adventure without change. And no buying sweets, either. Have you ever tried to buy a lolly with a thousand-pound note?" Just a little reminder that change isn't always bad. It can be scary, but that doesn't make it bad or wrong.
"That's very tactical of her," the Dodo said. "I always do that with my halves. When two and two is four, I always say eight, just to be twice as certain." This is one of those points where I am reminded of Winnie-the-Pooh; on the surface it sounds crazy and nonsensical, but when you think about it, you find there really is a lot of wisdom in what they say.
I'm going to be real with you, Alice in Wonderland is not my favorite Disney movie. It just wasn't my thing as a child, though I might need to give it another go now, so I wasn't sure I was going to love this. One of my favorite experiences that I had reading this book was the hidden love I had for the characters, which I didn't even know it was there (hence the hidden love) until they popped up in this book. I was so happy and excited when characters like the Cheshire Cat, Mad Hatter and the Dormouse showed up. I felt like I, too were meeting old friends.
I also really loved the hop between worlds that Alice took, starting in England, going to Wonderland and back and forth. I felt like it added so much and painted a really cool mirroring of the two worlds and how the "best" scenario is a person or world with a mix of both Wonderland and England.
All in all, I really enjoyed this book and found myself pulled in pretty quickly! It's the second Twisted Tale book I read that was based on a movie that wasn't my favorite and have realized that some of those books are really my favorite in the series. They breath a new life into stories in a way that makes it feel like a brand new experience!
What do I rate this?
I give this a
But that's just me! What did you think? Did you love this book or do you prefer the original? Did you hate the new versions of the beloved characters like the Mad Hatter, or did you miss the old ones? Let us know in the comments?