PrincessC176, June 18, 2009 (view all comments by PrincessC176)
The Looking Glass Wars was an absolutely wonderful book that I didn't want to put down. Even if you're not an Alice in Wonderland fan, this book won't disappoint. Seeing Redd is the next in the series and it's a great continuation.
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Daoshi, February 21, 2007 (view all comments by Daoshi)
Before I begin, I have to say that my first experience with Lewis Carroll’s influence wasn’t the best when I had nightmares over evil-grinning cats ripping my skin off and hatters that would boil me in their tea. (I suppose that means I had macabre imagination for a child.) That being said, I already had a bias about The Looking Glass War’s “Hatter Madigan” and “The Cat” characters before even reading about them.
Frank Beddor, however, shall cause no such nightmares to anyone. To assemble an appropriate book to suit all ages and tastes is nearly impossible. Yet, The Looking Glass Wars pulls it off well; it returns adolescent imagining powers as a literal form of energy while including the ever popular demand for “action fight scenes” and “childhood adoration.” Because of this, the book has reached popularity; like all popular books, there are always people that want everything to be all original and I, myself, prefer original things over trite, over-used themes. However, The Looking Glass Wars has a careful blend of both.
Nevertheless, this book might not be the best for all in which it requires an open mind and personal opinions.
The American McGee travesty of the Mad Hatter was rather repulsive. Upon hearing of Hatter Madigan, I expected another American grotesque, tragic remix of the classic at-maker. I was gladly proved wrong. Hatter Madigan has a wonderful character and he is very focused on his ambitions. We see Hatter’s personal goals rather easily but is haunted by his own daemons bestowed upon him as a command from Queen Genevieve Heart.
Now, Princess Alyss goes through scenarios that we all must go through such as when one speaks the truth yet all revile. Alyss’ powers elude her on Earth and thus, she shows courage in trying to reclaim it in Wonderland thirteen years later of everyone attempting to convince her that Wonderland does not exist and that her true name is Alice. Why doesn’t this girl go through an identity crisis or develop schizophrenia as a form of being haunted by her family’s death? It’s amazing how she pulls through! In addition, she is also courageous in a sense that she does not lash out on Queen Redd for her the dictator’s massacring of many people and Alyss certainly is not contained in a mental ward because of her beliefs of Wonderland. Alyss is also unselfish for the fact that she chooses to do what is best for all in both places, Wonderland and Earth.
Instead of giving us a “rip-off” cliff-hanger ending, we have a decent resolution to all the elements to encourage the readers to read the next two books of the fantasy trilogy.
I encourage all to read The Looking Glass Wars. Cheers!
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"Publishers Weekly Review"
by Publishers Weekly,
"Alice was real — although her name was spelled Alyss, one of the many details Lewis Carroll got wrong in the story told to him by the young queen of Wonderland, according to Beddor's imaginative opener to a planned trilogy. Seven-year-old Alyss Heart is heir to the throne of Wonderland, just beginning her training under her albino tutor Bibwit Harte (an anagram for 'white rabbit,' one of many such puns) when her evil aunt Redd, long ago banished to the Chessboard Desert, leads a violent coup that kills King Nolan, Alyss's father. Alyss narrowly escapes (via a looking glass, naturally) with the help of bodyguard Hatter Madigan, and ends up in a London orphanage. Here she meets Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, a 'gentle, shrinking-violet type of fellow,' who will turn her story into a children's book; years later, Hatter finds the book during his quest to find the lost princess, and seeks out Carroll. While the girl (now Alice Liddell) prepares to marry Prince Leopold, life in Wonderland grows ever harsher under the reign of Redd, and the 'Alyssinians' await the return of their young queen-to-be. Beddor makes ample use of Carroll-esque humor and wit, so much so that the thought of an entire trilogy is somewhat daunting; fortunately, the ending to this first entry allows readers to treat it as a standalone. Fans of the source material will find this an entertaining diversion, while those unfamiliar with it will miss much of the humor. Ages 12-up. (Sept.) Agent: Barbara Marshall Ltd." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
by Children's Buyer's Guide,
"A highly original and engrossing read that takes the story of Carroll's Alice and turns it on its head in a totally believable way. I couldn't put it down and I can't wait for the next volume."
by Kirkus Reviews,
"The action moves swiftly from one complex scene to the next."
"[R]eadable and appealing...a good choice for reluctant readers."
by School Library Journal,
"Fans of Carroll's stories will flock to this and those who have managed to miss that less violent classic can get to it while waiting for the next volume in this exciting and humorous trilogy."
"The clever premise, the superior production values, and the publisher's ambitious marketing plans will no doubt ensure success at least on par with that of other recent juvenile fantasies. This book is enjoyable, but it could have been more."
"Beddor offers some intriguing reimaginings of Dodgson's concepts...but his transformation of Wonderland's lunacy into a workable world sometimes leads to stilted exposition on history, geography, and government."
The Myth: Alice was an ordinary girl who stepped through the looking glass and entered a fairy-tale world invented by Lewis Carroll in his famous storybook. The Truth: Wonderland is real. Alyss Heart is the heir to the throne, until her murderous aunt Redd steals the crown and kills Alyss? parents. To escape Redd, Alyss and her bodyguard, Hatter Madigan, must flee to our world through the Pool of Tears. But in the pool Alyss and Hatter are separated. Lost and alone in Victorian London, Alyss is befriended by an aspiring author to whom she tells the violent, heartbreaking story of her young life. Yet he gets the story all wrong. Hatter Madigan knows the truth only too well, and he is searching every corner of our world to find the lost princess and return her to Wonderland so she may battle Redd for her rightful place as the Queen of Hearts.
You know the myth...
A little girl named Alice tumbled down a rabbit hole and proceeded to have a charming adventure in the delightful, made-up world of Wonderland...
Now discover the truth... Wonderland Exists!
Alyss Heart, heir to the Wonderland throne, was forced to flee through the Pool of Tears after a bloody palace coup staged by the murderous Redd. Lost and alone in Victorian London, Alyss is befriended by an aspiring author to whom she tells the violent, heartbreaking story of her young life only to see it published as the nonsensical Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Alyss had trusted Lewis Carroll to tell the truth so that someone, somewhere would find her and bring her home. But Carroll had gotten it all wrong. He even misspelled her name! If not for royal bodyguard Hatter Madigan's nonstop search to locate the lost princess, Alyss may have become just another society woman sipping tea in a too-tight corset instead of returning to Wonderland to fight Redd for her rightful place as the Queen of Hearts.
Meet the heroic, passionate, monstrous, vengeful denizens of this parallel world as they battle each other with AD-52's and orb generators, navigate the Crystal Continuum, bet on jabberwock fights and travel across the Chessboard Desert.
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