‘In a warren of crumbling buildings and desperate people called the Old City, there stands a hospital with cinderblock walls which echo the screams of the poor souls inside.
In the hospital, there is a woman. Her hair, once blond, 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.’
These books are definitely not for the faint of heart, that’s for sure. But for someone like me that likes a bit of gory violence in their literature, this was awesome. Also trigger warnings for sexual violence and rape. The first book focuses on Alice and her prison buddy Hatcher escaping and finding the rabbit. Alice’s memories of what happened to her all those years ago are very foggy and as the story progresses, she remembers more and more of the horrific events that happened.
I especially liked how the traditional characters from wonderland were incorporated as twisted human characters in this world, unfortunately we run in to them all and they are all as horrifying as each other (Cheshire isn’t quite so bad), but the Caterpillar and the Walrus are pretty nightmare worthy. We finally reach the Rabbit and learn about Alice’s terrible past and manage to escape along with some other unfortunate souls we met along the way.
Enter book 2 and we spend half of it lost in a forest with man-eating giants and something burning everything in sight. Hatcher loses the plot and we are left alone to try to stop the Red Queen, the way to which is through a tree, of course. I can’t say much about book 2 without spoilers but trust me it is just as good and twisted as the first book and I found the ending to be satisfying.
Books I definitely want to re-read at some point in the future. Lost Boy and The Mermaid by Christina Henry are also on my soon to be read list.