How the book got written
Although there’s little I relish more than getting lost in the depths of a good science fantasy book (Stephen Donaldson’s Thomas Covenant series being my all-time favourite), the creations of Lewis Carroll and CS Lewis have always retained a special place in my heart. So when I reached the stage where my “grown-up job” gave me the chance to spend more time on my own writing, I decided that Alice Falls Again would be my first novel to reach the finishing line.
From the outset, I wanted to respect the linear journey, word-play and quirkiness of the original Alice books but I also wanted to make it clear this wasn’t a copy. The book has its own characters and settings, the sinister back stories to common nursery rhymes and subtle links to challenges and injustices we face in today’s society. After that, and giving Alice a gentle nudge into the river, the characters pretty much decided what happened next.
Is this just another Alice imitation?
I hope that anyone who reads the book agrees that it’s not. There are of course several nods to Lewis Carroll’s epic works, among them, the underlying twisted fantasy and a healthy dose of word-play in the dialogue. And no prizes for spotting that the main character is Alice, who during her journey has to confront some ongoing changes in her own character. The Cheshire Cat is also sometimes present (well, parts of him) but all other characters are new.
What I would like to think makes Alice Falls Again fresh are how events and characters are driven by the dark history behind our favourite nursery rhymes; how menace and goodwill in this dystopian Wonderland are not always what they seem; and how Alice learns a thing or two about herself and the nature of our own world along the way. When researching other books written about Alice's return to Wonderland, I was struck by how very different they were from my own ideas about what might happen to Alice and how she would cope.
So who might enjoy this book? I would say any adult or young adult who likes fantasy and word-play, was enthralled by the original Wonderland books or remembers childhood nursery rhymes. Imagine David Lynch has teamed up with Roald Dahl to write a new chapter in the life of Alice (I wish).
Why not see for yourself? Buy here.
ALICE FALLS AGAIN