After Alice, Gregory Maguire

When Alice fell down the rabbit-hole, she found Wonderland as rife with inconsistent rules and abrasive egos as the world she left behind. Ada, a friend mentioned briefly in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, sets out to visit Alice but, arriving a moment too late, tumbles down the rabbit-hole herself. Ada brings to Wonderland her own imperfect apprehension of cause and effect as she embarks on an odyssey to find Alice and bring her safely home from this surreal world below the world.


This book was not at all what I expected when I first read the description, and honestly I’m very disappointed.

So this was not really fiction as I expected: I thought it would present Wonderland for another character, what they find there and how they feel about it, etc. Instead it included much more social commentary about the time period, which to be honest is pretty boring. The language was overly political and complicated in comparison to what I expected from the novel which made it a struggle to feel involved in what was going – although perhaps if I had started knowing what it would be like I would have felt more engaged?

When I first looked at it I thought this novel had an interesting concept to start, but some components that Maguire included made it just stupid! For example, Darwin turns up as a friend of Alice’s family, visiting her father, and Mr Winter an American abolitionist even though the book is set after the abolition of slavery in the UK?! I just don’t understand why you would bother to do that, when there are so many other interesting fictional characters, like Ada.

In fact, I didn’t finish this book. (It’s a surprisingly short book, but I didn’t even get to halfway.) So if this review doesn’t already show you how unenthusiastic I am about this novel, then I think that does! There are just some far more interesting books out there that I know I really do want to read, so despite the fact that I hate not finishing books this one just had to be my exception.

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6 thoughts on “After Alice, Gregory Maguire

      1. I read the Looking Glass House recently which was also associated with Alice in Wonderland and I was disappointed. Why do these kinds of books often seem to have gorgeous covers but disappointing insides?

        Liked by 1 person

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