Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Alice In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Journey with Alice down the rabbit hole into a world of wonder where oddities, logic and wordplay rule supreme. Encounter characters like the grinning Cheshire Cat who can vanish into thin air, the cryptic Mad Hatter who speaks in riddles and the harrowing Queen of Hearts obsessed with the phrase "Off with their heads " This is a land where rules have no boundaries, eating mushrooms will make you grow or shrink, croquet is played with flamingos and hedgehogs, and exorbitant trials are held for the theft of tarts. Amidst these absurdities, Alice will have to find her own way home. 

 So when I was about seven, I picked up Alice In Wonderland for the first time...and I didn't finish it. Why? Because let me tell you right now - for those of you who get confused really easily, this is not the book for you. Alice In Wonderland is a weird and extremely crazy and confusing novel - brilliant, but confusing. And although Alice herself is seven years old, this isn't a book I can imagine a child reading, in the sense that you have to make yourself persevere at times. But although it took me about two weeks to read it, it was well worth it!

Anyway, apart from the reason that I don't like giving up on books, the reason why I picked it up again was because of Tim Burton's adaptation of it - yeah, I'm a Burton nerd! And I practically know about half the script to it, so I thought - well, I'd better know the story behind the script (especially since I've pledged to read the printed word...oops!). I have to say, I was really surprised how different the two books are compared with the film- and for once, I think both are great, in their own unique ways.

I have to say, I do love all the characters Carroll created. The Hatter, the Caterpillar, Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum and the Queen of Hearts, being my particular favourites. I think what I liked the best was the fact that they are all mad - but so differently mad. No two people (okay, aside from the Tweedles, and the Hatter and the Hare) have the same personality, which I think makes all the different chapters interesting. However, because they are all so different, I felt that the continuity isn't that good, especially in Through the Looking Glass. I think it would have been better if more was explained, especially where the numerous poems were concerned - I wanted Carroll to explain what a Jabberwocky, a Bandersnatch was - and although at a certain point with Humpty Dumpty, I thought we were getting somewhere, we didn't. But I also think that added to the mystery that is Wonderland, the fact that every question is left unanswered - however irritating that may be.

Overall, I think you have to be in the right mood to read the books - tolerable, perhaps? After a while, I did accept the fact that I wasn't going to get the answers I wanted, and just stuck with going along for the ride - and I did really enjoy it, especially where the Queens and my favourite characters were concerned. If you love fantasy novels, I think you should read these two books - Wonderland is officially the Queen of Fantasy World's, and if you have not read it, you are definitely missing out.

1 comment:

  1. I finally read the first Alice in Wonderland a few years ago with my sister (also before the Burton movie^_^) and it was so random, so wild, I was lost almost the whole time but I was cracking up the whole time!lol Great review!