Splintered by A.G. Howard

Posted December 9, 2012 by Lisa Mandina in / 16 Comments

The first thing I HAVE to say about this book is that I LOVED it!!!!  Such a creative, engrossing, awesome story!  I’m not the biggest Alice in Wonderland fan, and don’t hate me, but I’m not really that big of a Tim Burton fan, so I never saw the new movie.  I read the book, a long time ago, and have seen the cartoons, and other things about it, so it’s not an unknown story.  But it was just not one I really ever got into.  As I got into it though, and the story included some “facts” about the author and the little girl that he kind of based the story on, I got interested enough to do some internet research.  And for some reason I felt I’d seen a movie about the true story. But then when I couldn’t find a movie like that, I realized that it was actually a movie about the author of Peter Pan.  I wish they would make a movie now about Lewis Carroll.  

Okay, here’s my brief synopsis of Splintered:  Our main character is Alyssa, who is a distant relative of THE Alice that the story was based on.  Her mother is in an asylum, as she seems to believe that she has been to Wonderland, and even hurt her daughter one time because of what she heard the insects saying.  And actually, Alyssa has been hearing the insects and plants talk to her for awhile.  But she’s tried really hard not to let anyone know, and to ignore it.  In fact, to help deal with it, she took up collecting insects, and using them in art.  Which of course required them to be killed, which meant silence for Alyssa.  She does decide to admit something to her mother about it, when the things going on with the insects begin to grow strangely predictive.  But telling her mother about it leads to her mother having a bit of a breakdown. To the point where her father decides that electric shock therapy may be the only choice left.  But Alyssa has learned of the curse on her family, and now wants nothing more to get to London, and in turn into Wonderland, to fix the original Alice’s mistakes and save her family.  She figures out how to get there from clues both off the internet as well as from her mother.  Unfortunately when she gets the “looking glass” to work for her with the keys her mother left hidden for her, Jeb, her next door neighbor, best-friend, and secret crush, gets sucked in after her when he tries to save her.  But of course, once they get to Wonderland, they have to deal with all the familiar things in the story, the shrinking with drinking the “drink me” and then growing back with the “eat me” cake.  And, as with any good story, what Alyssa believes she is there to do, is not actually what she’s going to be doing, or why she’ll do it.  Not to mention the fact that Alyssa herself isn’t who or what she’s always believed she was.  Such a good story, with twists and turns to keep you on your feet and making it hard to put the book down, even if you have to work!!
Okay, now, things I loved, that all the women in the line of the family were named a version of the name Alice.  Any story that makes me want to research into a true story is a great story in my opinion.  While there is a bit of a love triangle, and I do get tired of those, the way it works, well, it just works, and isn’t as much of a triangle as could be.  And, I am not a fan of comic books really, or graphic novels, but I must admit how much I wanted to see each of the outfits that Alyssa wore in the book.  The author described them so colorfully I could almost see them in my head. But I’d love to see a graphic novel, or illustrations within just a regular novel of them.  And I want her to look just like the cover, no cartoony-ness or manga-ish, anime-ish, etc.  And this would be a colorful, wonderful movie, one I’d be there at midnight to see, even though I’ve said no more midnight premieres unless they are in the summer, because I’m too old for that during the school year when I have to teach all day.  I love, love, love this book!  If you like fairy tale retellings, or other story retellings, then you have to read this.  What are you waiting for?  Oh yeah, it won’t be published till January.  But put it on your TBR list, you’ll want to read it!  
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16 responses to “Splintered by A.G. Howard

  1. Same here. I'm not the biggest Alice in Wonderland fan either, but I love the cover and synopsis. I'm going to give this one a try. Thanks!

  2. Sam

    I say yes to a movie! Though I suppose with the recent Alice movie, that is unlikely. Still, it would be brilliant. 🙂 I'm so glad you enjoyed this too! I loved how creative and well built the story was. Lovely review.

  3. Not a big Alice in Wonderland fan nor a Tim Burton fan at ALL. But I agree, this book was fantastic. My only problem with this book is the way she portrayed Jeb, which was sad for me because I loved his relationship with Alyssa. He was just too domineering at points, and it ground my gears because chivalry isn't meant to be domineering. I do wonder if that annoyed others as much as it annoyed me.

    Great review!

  4. Awesome review. I've been debating the last few months over if I should or shouldn't get a copy. I think you sealed the deal. I want to read it even more. Thanks for sharing

  5. Anonymous

    This books sounds so good! I know I am just going to love it. Thank you so much for your review, I wanted to read it before, but now I want to read it RIGHT THIS VERY MINUTE! I am a fan of Alice in Wonderland and this sounds like such a perfect retelling. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  6. JZ

    OMG YES! I'd love to see a graphic novel of Splintered too! And I totally agree on the part about wanting to see Alyssa's outfits – they all sounded so edgy and fun 😀

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