Friday, October 9, 2015

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Other Tales (Race Point Publishing)

It's been 150 years since Alice's Adventures in Wonderland was first published. Let that sink in for a moment...150 years... In the time since it was first published, there have been numerous adaptations of it both in book and on the screen. The most famous of these is probably Disney's animated version, which itself is 61 years old. The movie, like all adaptations, fell short, and reminded us that if you want to experience the true glory of a work, you have to read the original. Due to the books age, there are a lot of editions from which you can choose. I have positive experiences with Race Point Publishing in the past, so I went for their deluxe, but very affordable Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Other Tales. In this 1000+ page tome you can find the following writings:

1. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
2. Through the Looking Glass
3. Sylvie and Bruno
4. Sylvie and Bruno Concluded
5. The Hunting of the Snark and other poems
6. Phantasmagoria and other plays

I have never read Through the Looking Glass before, but I have read excerpts, primarily Jabberwocky. Therefore, I was most excited to read this tale and see how it compared to its predecessor. The book begins with Alice playing with two kittens - one white and the other black. While playing with her kittens, she wonders what life would be like on the other side of a mirror. She soon learns as she enters into a mirror where everything is different. In this world, Alice meets a Red Queen who is NOT to be confused with the Queen of Hearts from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. The Red Queen reveals to Alice that the entire land is laid out like a chessboard, and she offers to make Alice a queen as well if she can make it to the other end of the board. The entire story revolves around Alice advancing through the land (on the board), the people she encounters (like Humpty Dumpty, the Red King, the White Knight, etc.), and the adventures and troubles she encounters. She does finally become a queen. For a fan of chess, I found this tale to be an equal blend of riveting and comical!

In addition to the Alice tales, I also enjoyed reading the poetry, riddles, plays, and other miscellaneous works of Carroll. They really showed his twisted genius, and I mean that as an utmost compliment. In addition to the brilliant works, there are illustrations that add to the story and introductions and prefaces that help explain the works and provide context as well. The only flaw in this book is the thinness of the pages. Due to their thinness, text and images show through on the page you are reading, which can be a bit distracting sometimes. This is still a gorgeous and affordable book and perfect for any fan of Lewis Carroll and children's literature. Highly recommended!

This book was provided to me for free by Race Point Publishing in exchange for an honest review. If you found this review helpful, please click here and hit Yes!