Published by William Morrow
From the multi-million-copy bestselling author of Wicked comes a magical new twist on Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, published to coincide with the 150th anniversary of Lewis's Carroll's beloved classic
When Alice toppled down the rabbit-hole 150 years ago, she found a Wonderland as rife with inconsistent rules and abrasive egos as the world she left behind. But what of that world? How did 1860s Oxford react to Alice's disappearance?
In this brilliant new work of fiction, Gregory Maguire turns his dazzling imagination to the question of underworlds, undergrounds, underpinnings — and understandings old and new, offering an inventive spin on Carroll's enduring tale. Ada, a friend of Alice's mentioned briefly in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, is off to visit her friend, but arrives a moment too late — and 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 see her safely home from this surreal world below the world. If Euridyce can ever be returned to the arms of Orpheus, or Lazarus can be raised from the tomb, perhaps Alice can be returned to life. Either way, everything that happens next is After Alice.
I picked up After Alice after I failed to finish Wicked purely because I thought with it being a smaller book I might be able to get through this one and finish it. I did finish this one but I struggled all the way through. This book was boring, there’s no other word for it, I was bored all the way through. I just think the way the story was laid out was wrong, it made the story feel cumbersome and there was no flow to anything, just when the story would start to get good we would end up watching Lydia throwing herself at a man.
I personally think the biggest problem with After Alice would be the fact that Ada is following Alice through Wonderland and basically experiencing everything that Alice had. It was basically a word for word retelling without any of the originality. That was the part of the book that I really struggled with, I just couldn’t see anything that was particularly original or thrilling about this story. I didn’t connect with any of the characters or the plot line. I think this book would have been better if there had been something original about it rather than following Alice through Wonderland.
I also hated Lydia as a character I don’t think there could have been a more unlikeable character throughout the book. The way she treated other people made me cringe and plus the way she threw herself at men was just awful. I’m not really sure what the point of her was in the story. She didn’t really add anything to the plot and all in all she made After Alice a really awful book to read. I just couldn’t imagine my sister being missing and not really caring about anything, it really baffled me.
Can we also talk about Darwin being in After Alice, I’m still not sure what the point of him being in the story was. I suppose it might be something in the original Alice but I can’t remember the last time I read it. I just thought the entire situation seemed to be completely forced and it just didn’t feel natural! I would have preferred for there to have been more development in terms of Ada’s journey instead of adding all these different underdeveloped elements! I just wasn’t sure what they were supposed to be adding in terms of the story or plot line.
I wouldn’t recommend After Alice to anyone, this book was definitely not worth the time it took to read! It was so underdeveloped and boring. It took so much time to read purely because of how wordy and awful it was written!
Have you read After Alice? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!