In a warren of crumbling buildings and desperate people called the Old City, there stands a hospital with cinderblock walls which echo with the screams of the poor souls inside.In the hospital, there is a woman. Her hair, once blonde, hangs in tangles down her back. She doesn't remember why she's in such a terrible place-just a tea party long ago, and long ears, and blood...Then, one night, a fire at the hospital gives the woman a chance to escape, tumbling out of the hole that imprisoned her, leaving her free to uncover the truth about what happened to her all those years ago.Only something else has escaped with her. Something dark. Something powerful.And to find the truth, she will have to track this beast to the very heart of the Old City, where the rabbit waits for his Alice.
Oh wow... what did I just read? I don't even know where to begin. I can assure you I am not very familiar with retellings. The only one I have read is Beastly and some other not much known ones. I am still to read some in the future, they are on my shelf, such as the Lunar Chronicles. But I was really eager for this one. A retelling and a horror... this I needed to read. And it has been unlike anything I have ever read...
While its a retelling, it is rather loosely based on Alice in wonderland, it is not much like the story. You will recognise the characters and that's almost it. It draws you in from the start. Alice is in a mental hospital because of something horrific that seems to have happened to her that she can not recall, beside the fact it was something to do with the Rabbit. There she befriends the person in the room next to hers, Hatcher. He however seems to have his own problems and even tho he tells Alice he has murdered people she finds herself drawn to him,
When a fire starts in the institute he saves her and they escape the hospital and the fire together. They flee into the Old City a rather scary, dangerous and disturbing place. Much much different from the wonderland in Alice.
What surprised me quite a bit was how gory this book actually was. Heads are rolling, to name at least one. There is other parts I found rather uncomfortable to read and made me cringe at times.
I couldn't even tell you much more about this book then this, even if I wanted to. Because it was rather mental in a good kind of way. It was bizarre and disturbing at times. This is not my usual genre and its not one I am most comfortable with. It was just that little too wacky for me. BUT if this is your cup of tea in general then you will love this much more then me.
There is a lot of disturbing and dark things going on. Its a very visual kind of book and you rather need a strong stomach for it. Also would not recommend this to any young readers. The author has taken a classic story and has completely turned it upside down and produced a world like no other.
Dark, gory and bizarre.
Thank you to Lydia at Titan Books for my copy in exchange for my honest opinion.
Alice will be released on 28th of June.