After Alice: A Novel

After Alice: A Novel

by Gregory Maguire

Paperback(Reprint)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780060859749
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 07/05/2016
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 119,923
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.68(d)

About the Author

Gregory Maguire is the New York Times bestselling author of Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister; Lost; Mirror Mirror; and the Wicked Years, a series that includes Wicked, Son of a Witch, A Lion Among Men, and Out of Oz. Now a beloved classic, Wicked is the basis for a blockbuster Tony Award–winning Broadway musical. Maguire has lectured on art, literature, and culture both at home and abroad. He lives with his family near Boston, Massachusetts.

Hometown:

Boston, Massachusetts

Date of Birth:

June 9, 1954

Place of Birth:

Albany, New York

Education:

B.A., SUNY at Albany, 1976; M.A., Simmons College, 1978; Ph.D., Tufts University, 1990

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After Alice: A Novel 2.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The writing style mimicked the original Alice in Wonderland. Especially enjoyed the new characters that Alice left behind in England. I would love a sequel to learn what will happen next for those that seem to have been left behind in Wonderland!
LadiSteele More than 1 year ago
I would seriously like a refund on this novel! I have read all of his books to date, and this was by far the most disappointing and a huge let down.
KarenfromDothan More than 1 year ago
In 1860’s England, young Ada Boyce is tasked with taking a jar of marmalade to the home of Alice Clowd. Ada Boyce suffers from a spinal deformity, and her one and only friend is kind hearted Alice. Along the way she falls through a rabbit hole and into Wonderland where she searches for Alice. As a long time fan of Gregory Maguire, I was really looking forward to reading this book. Maybe my expectations were too high, but I found it a big let down. Although some readers may find his narrative charming, I thought his writing style to be much too flowery for my taste. I also did not find much to like about his characters; particularly Lydia, Alice’s truculent older sister, and Miss Armstrong, Ada’s reprehensible governess. I suppose they are meant to represent Victorian England’s rigid social mores. None of the characters are very well developed in my opinion. We’re given just the barest of information about most of them. I probably gleaned the most details about Siam, the former slave. Most important of all though, I did not care a lot for the plot, what little of it there was. As I see it, too little Wonderland and too much of the search for the missing children.
ABookAWeekES More than 1 year ago
"How very like a dream this all is." Gregory Maguire, author of the bestselling novel Wicked, is back with his latest novel, a re-imagining of Lewis Carroll's classic Alice in Wonderland. Whether you've read Carroll's novel or seen any of the numerous film adaptations of the work, you are probably familiar with Alice's adventures in the strange Wonderland. But what about Alice's family? How did they cope with her mysterious disappearance? And what kind of impact did Alice's presence in Wonderland have on all of those curious characters that she came across? As he's done in most of his other novels, Gregory Maguire uses After Alice to fill in the gaps and answer some of these questions. Young Ada is around the same age as her neighbor Alice. She wears an unwieldy contraption that is intended to correct her posture, but the device only accentuates her awkward personality and deters many potential playmates. Alice, however, has never seemed to mind Ada. Whether Alice truly enjoys Ada's company or is simply too preoccupied with her own fantasies to notice the other girl's presence, she is the closest thing to a friend that Ada has. One day, Ada is asked to take some homemade marmalade to Alice's house. As she wanders into her friend's yard, she sees a peculiar sight. A small white rabbit adorned in a waistcoat and clutching a pocket watch stands before her. As the animal runs off, Ada follows. She suddenly falls through a rabbit hole and is thrust into a crazy world populated by odd characters. As the novel progresses, Ada travels a few steps behind Alice's famed journey and aims to reconnect with her friend and find her way back home. Parallel to this is the story of Alice's older sister Lydia. Lydia is supposed to be keeping watch of her sister, when the girl descends into Wonderland. She isn't worried at first. Alice is notorious for exploring their grounds. But when Ada too is noticed to be missing, Lydia begins to worry about the two girls. She hesitates to interrupt her father who is meeting with Charles Darwin. When Ada's housemaid comes looking for the girl, Lydia enlists her help. This is my first novel by Gregory Maguire. After the high praises of Wicked and his other works, I was eager to get my hands on this one. Maguire's writing style takes a bit of time to get used to. He writes in a way that seems to hearken back to the Victorian era that this story occurs in. The entire novel is approached with a high-brow air of superiority that initially caught me off guard. While this could certainly be an attempt to mimic Lewis Carroll's prose, it ends up coming off more as an unnecessarily pretentious device that does little to enhance the story. The story itself is equally confounding. The parts that focus on Lydia offer many promising insights about a young woman's role and expectations in Victorian Era England. By introducing Charles Darwin as a guest to the family's residence, Maguire also explores issues of science, evolution, and race. This narrative could easily have been fleshed out into a fascinating novel on its own. However, by placing this thread alongside the surprisingly less vibrant Wonderland narrative, Maguire ultimately does not have enough book to adequately devote attention to either plot. In the end, After Alice is a novel that is full of interesting elements that never reach a cohesively satisfying whole.
Muttcafe More than 1 year ago
After Alice is a novel that is slow to draw the reader in, but rewards the patient. I have not read any of Gregory Maguire’s previous novels, so I did not know what to expect. The two central characters are Alice’s sister and her friend Ada. Ada is not your normal heroine. She wears an extensive brace to help her walk upright and has mobility and health issues. Still, she is forthright and loyal to her best friend Alice. While Alice is steeped in fancy, Ada is practical and down-to-earth. When she follows Alice down the rabbit hole, Ada becomes certain that Alice will need rescuing. What follows is her own unique journey through Wonderland, along with encounters with many of its memorable characters. At the same time, Alice’s sister is searching for Alice. Navigating the time between childhood and adulthood is not easy. It’s fraught with frustrations, not the least of which is being responsible for her younger sister. Adolescence is a time of responsibility without authority. Meanwhile the adults, with the exception of Ada’s governess, are all occupied with their own activities, and the quirks of children lie on the periphery. As with Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, Maguire’s depiction of Wonderland is fraught with fancy, colored by a child’s perception of the inconsistencies in adult conversation and concepts. Childhood is a unique time where imagination can give anyone wings, and disability is only what you make of it. Limitations are an adult concept that has little place in the inner world of children such as Alice and Ada. After Alice is a unique book that will appeal most to fans of the Wonderland novels and Gregory Maguire. 4/5 After Alice is available for preorder and will be released October 27, 2015. I received a copy of After Alice from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. –Crittermom Visit http://muttcafe.com for more book reviews
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This might not appeal to the average reader, but if one is open to an offbeat novel , this just might fit the bill .
WhisperingStories More than 1 year ago
Being a huge Alice in Wonderland fan, I was eager to read this book. The front cover is very eye-catching and the synopsis had me hooked. However I’m not sure whether I had built the book up too much in my expectations or not, but I just couldn’t get into it, and it took me weeks to read, which is very unusual. I think everyone must know the children’s story Alice’s Adventure’s in Wonderland, and what happens to Alice when she follows the White Rabbit down under the ground. This book is not a re-telling of the original story, nor is it a children’s book. It is quite clearly aimed at the adult market, especially when you consider that you need to keep a dictionary on hand to understand quite a lot of the words that Mr. Maguire uses. The story is told from when Alice goes missing, and alternates between the characters Ada, Alice’s best friend, who ends up falling down the rabbit hole too, and then sets off in search of Alice, and Lydia, Alice’s sister, who keeps her feet firmly above ground and doesn’t really seem that interested that her sister is missing, until right near the end. Most of the original characters, such as the Cheshire Cat, make an appearance in this book too, which was lovely to read. The trouble I had with the book is that I didn’t have any empathy for any of the characters. Yes, Ada wasn’t so bad, but Lydia, I just couldn’t get to like her no matter how hard I tried. She just annoyed me, which then made reading the book hard work! There were also a lot, and I mean a lot, of characters in the book, with many not adding anything to the story, nor needed. So what you end up with is numerous characters who all seem like they are trying to outshine one another. The book does have some interesting and fun scenes, and the narrative is quite good humoured. Mr. Maguire is to be commended on writing his own take on the classic tale, and how he let his imagination tell a different side to the original tale. Unfortunately though, it won’t be a book that I return to, which is a shame as I was really looking for to reading it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Gregory Maguire is most well known for his retelling of The Wizard of Oz which has become a hit Broadway musical: Wicked. He's also done retellings of Cinderella in the form Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister, and Snow White in Mirror Mirror. After Alice is his version of Alice in Wonderland. I have to admit, I have never read Wicked, and I began Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister and hated it. In my opinion Maguire likes to make the stories darker and twistier than than already are, and while I love 90% of Cinderella retellings and even all of Grimm's Fairy Tales, I just could not cope with everything that was happening to the poor characters in Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister. Needless to say, I was very apprehensive about After Alice, but since Alice in Wonderland is already pretty twisty and full of nonsense I thought that there probably wasn't a whole lot he could do to make it make less sense than it already did. For the most part, I was correct. After Alice bounces back and forth between Alice's friend Ada, who follows her down the rabbit hole and spends the whole book looking for Alice, her only friend, and Alice's older sister still in Victorian England, Lydia, who is dealing with the fallout of both Alice and Ada having gone missing while Charles Darwin is paying a visit to her father, accompanied by a handsome young man whom Lydia rather fancies. You do eventually get a third point of view from Siam, a slave boy Darwin's friend has brought with him from America and is trying to adopt. Siam gets into trouble with Lydia, who locks him the spare sitting room, and Siam enters Wonderland through where? You guessed it! The looking glass. I loved that this part was included. Anyway, Lydia's chapters are supremely boring. She is the very quintessence of a 15 year old girl who is trying too hard at being grown up for her own good and not really acting grown up at all. In many ways she is the exact opposite of Wendy from Peter Pan. She flirts shamelessly with Darwin's friend and becomes insanely jealous every time something happens to impede her flirtation. She doesn't really care that Alice and Ada are missing, only that she is blamed and tasked with finding them. Despite Wonderland wandering around Ada, she doesn't seem bothered by it, but barrels on through to continue her search. It's almost as though Alice is so weak that she is trapped in Wonderland and must live by its rules, while Ada is so strong that she lives outside of space and time in Wonderland and can bend it to her will. This is especially evident in the Jabberwocky scene at the end. Overall, I would recommend After Alice to fans of Alice in Wonderland and other readers who are deep thinkers, but I would preface it by warning them that much of it is boring and must be slogged through. I think though, that in the end it was worth it. Curio Street Reads Rating: 3.5 Stars Read the Full Review at www.CurioStreetReads.wordpress.com
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
McGuireFan More than 1 year ago
I have read all of Gregory McGuire's books and looked forward to this one for months. Truly disappointed. I never could finish it. I kept picking it up and reading a few more pages in the hopes that I would eventually get pulled in. Didn't happen. Victorian type writing is difficult to read to begin with, and the story never really happens. It is all over the place, and about missing children without anything remotely exciting in the storyline. I was so bored and tired of trying to like it, I finally just laid it down. Just not like this author at all to make us wait for so long and give us what I felt was a very BLAH book. (One which I never will pick up to finish)