Book Review: Alice (The Chronicles of Alice 1) by Christina Henry

Alice (The Chronicles of Alice 1) by Christina Henry review

Alice, the first in the Chronicles of Alice series by Christina Henry, is a new retelling of Lewis Carroll’s classic, Alice in Wonderland, but with a horror twist.  This novel is nothing like the original, instead it is appealingly dark and creepy where the main protagonist, our dear Alice, escapes from the asylum in which she has been imprisoned for ten years with Hatcher, a madman who once murdered people with an axe. All our beloved characters from the original version also make an appearance, including the Rabbit, who isn’t a fluffy white rabbit in a waistcoat and pocket-watch, a protagonist and Alice’s friend in the Carroll classic. The Rabbit in this tale is a man with long white ears whom Alice narrowly escaped once after he tried to viciously hurt her, and the sole reason why she ended up in the asylum in the first place because no one believed her. The Jabberwocky here is a unique twist- a shadow and essence of a magician gone dark many years ago and trapped in the asylum, only to be set free by a fire that envelops the institution when both Alice and Hatcher escape. He feeds on blood and fear of the people and Alice and Hatcher both have to stop him. The only character who is remotely close to the original classic is Cheshire, a man and a cunning magician with the wide, smirking grin of a cat who assists Alice and Hatcher on their journey but yet, a character whom Alice regards with deep distrust and dislike.

This book is not for everyone, but offers a unique and twisted spin on Carroll’s classic. The characters are all there, but it is as if someone erased all their good qualities and replaced with them macabre and disturbing personalities. The readers follow Alice down a much scarier rabbit hole on a journey to vanquish the Jabberwocky in an imaginative, equally frightening city that will leaders hanging for the next book. Not for the faint of heart!

Review by Sanja Dragojlov