4.3 out of 5 stars
By A.G. Howard - Find her on Twitter: @aghowardwrites , Her Site, Amazon, or Barnes & Noble.
Book 1: Splintered ~ Book 2: Unhinged ~ Book 3: Ensnared (TBR)
The series had me from the very first chapter thinking numerous times, "what the hell is going on here and why is this girl talking to bugs"? Alyssa believes herself to be insane, a 17 year old girl that can hear the whispers of bugs and flowers. Her own mother resides in an institution for the same disability, and in her heart, Alyssa knows that she will end up there eventually as well. It seems this is the curse of the women in her family, following the line back to her ancestor, Alice Liddell that inspired the original Alice in Wonderland novel. But for now, Alyssa is keeping it together. Until her mother's mental stability suddenly declines, and the only option is electroshock therapy. She is forced to come to terms with her illness and dive into the rabbit hole. Literally. With her best friend and the love of her life, Jeb at her side, Alyssa discovers the secret and not so wonderful world of Wonderland. Seriously. The real Wonderland is far more dark and twisted than the carefree world Carroll's original book portrays it to be. Upon reuniting with her long last childhood friend, Morpheus- who ends up being the hookah smoking caterpillar, Alyssa must pass a number of tests to have the family curse of insanity removed. The only way to help her mother is to set out on a crazy, danger filled trek through the depths of this terrifying world. From draining an ocean of Alice's tears, to waking the Mad Hatter from his slumber and defeating a rabid bandersnatch- can Alyssa fix Alice's mistakes and free her family?
Mad. That is my first thought upon reading the first two books in this series. Reading felt similar to eating a few too many mushrooms and getting lost in the forest. This is one of the most twisted stories that I've had the pleasure of reading, so thank you A.G. Howard. A modernized version of Alice in Wonderland, with far more romance and creep factors going on throughout the story. I can't recommend this series enough, even if you weren't a fan of the original. The writing is almost lyrical and very polished. The characters are well written, and almost take on a life of their own. Alyssa tends to be a bit on the whiny side at the start of her adventure, but definitely grows into her role by the end of Splintered. Jeb is a selfless, and may I add, sexy grungy character that is deeply in love with Alyssa. Morpheus.. ah, Morpheus. The author compares him to Brandon Lee in The Crow but I cannot help but picture him as Johnny Depp in the Alice movie. He is wonderfully written- gentle yet powerful, mad yet perfectly sane in his logic. I don't want to give everything away because honestly, this is a must read for every urban fantasy nerd out there! The final installment in this series, Ensnared is set to release in the States in January 2015.
Excerp from book
“Of all the times you've undressed me in my fantasies, I never remember feeling this... unfulfilled." "Please, Morpheus," I beg upon hearing Jeb stir in the background. "Ah, but those delectable words," Morpheus says with a provocative smirk, "those are always in the fantasy." I glare at him. "You're unbelievable." "And that sentiment is reserved for the end. ” — A.G. Howard