On her 7th birthday, Princess Alice Heart receives the surprise of a lifetime: the return of her evil Aunt Red, who kills Alice’s mother in order to take back the throne of Wonderland. In a narrow escape, Alice and her mother’s bodyguard, Hatter Madigan, dive into the Pool of Tears and are separated. Alice finds herself alone in London where she is sent to an orphanage and eventually adopted by the Liddell’s who tell her that her stories of Wonderland are just that: stories that should be forgotten. Will Alice be able to find her way back to magical Wonderland, or will she live out the rest of her life in normal London?
I think the biggest issue I had with this book was that there were certain character aspects that I wish had been expanded on from the beginning. I know that there are two other books that follow this one and probably explain the parts that were briefly touched on—like the woman who Hatter Madigan loved, which I felt was randomly thrown in there toward the end of the book—but I think it would have brought more out in the characters if these aspects were elaborated on more in this book.
Despite this detail, I thoroughly enjoyed The Looking Glass Wars, admittedly probably more than I anticipated. I thought it was a great adaptation of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, and although it was based off of the characters in those books, Frank Beddor made them feel fresh and new—something fans have not seen before. The story was fast paced and well written, and kept me entertained and wanting more throughout. The only other minor detail I wish was different is the ages of Alice and Dodge. I know Alice Heart is supposed to be the age that Alice is in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, but I think the slight romance between Alice and Dodge would have made a little more sense if they were a bit older. Maybe 11 or 12 years old instead of 7 (Dodge would be a bit older since he was a few years older than Alice).
Regardless, not only would I highly recommend this book to fans of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, but it’s also a great book to introduce to young readers who also enjoy those stories.