Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Amy's View: An early review of Splintered by A.G. Howard

Splintered by A.G. Howard
♦publisher: Amulet Books
♦release date: January 1st, 2013
♦hardcover, 384 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦source: from publisher for honest review
This stunning debut captures the grotesque madness of a mystical under-land, as well as a girl’s pangs of first love and independence. Alyssa Gardner hears the whispers of bugs and flowers—precisely the affliction that landed her mother in a mental hospital years before. This family curse stretches back to her ancestor Alice Liddell, the real-life inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alyssa might be crazy, but she manages to keep it together. For now.

When her mother’s mental health takes a turn for the worse, Alyssa learns that what she thought was fiction is based in terrifying reality. The real Wonderland is a place far darker and more twisted than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, Alyssa must pass a series of tests, including draining an ocean of Alice’s tears, waking the slumbering tea party, and subduing a vicious bandersnatch, to fix Alice’s mistakes and save her family. She must also decide whom to trust: Jeb, her gorgeous best friend and secret crush, or the sexy but suspicious Morpheus, her guide through Wonderland, who may have dark motives of his own.

Review: This book I would say was one of my most anticipated books this year. As soon as I found out an Alice in Wonderland retelling was on its way I looked for any way to get my hands on a copy. And thanks to my best friend Becky, this blog, and Abrams, Splintered has found its way into my heart and on my bookshelf.

When I received this book I immediately and willingly dove head first into the rabbit hole, relishing with open eyes all that Wonderland would behold for me. And to tell you the truth there wasn’t a moment that I was disappointed. Never has anyone captured so beautifully the tale that Lewis Carroll spun like a web into an innocent child’s heart like A. G. Howard has. (Besides the amazing and magnificent Tim Burton.)

I have been captivated by Alice in Wonderland for as long as I can remember and never has there been a tale to feed the adult and young adult heart. Splintered is a breath of life for those fans of all ages. This story transcends time and generations and splendidly fills in the gaps of time. What if Alice was still tied to Wonderland once she returned, woken from her dream? Did she pass on the magic from generation to generation? What would it be like to be Alice’s great- great- great granddaughter?  Would the pull from Wonderland still be able to stir in your heart? And if you listened to that call, would it cause you to remain sane, or thrust you into the walls of a padded room gently nestled in a mental hospital? This haunting tale answers that question, spinning the reality of what you thought Wonderland was like and fills your head with a new and darker Wonderland.

I challenged you to take the leap of faith into the rabbit hole trusting that A. G. Howard will guide you on a fantastic journey. I hope you will find yourself in love with Alyssa from the first page as I did. From the moment the bugs buzz their first word and flowers chastise Alice I knew I would be hooked. There is not one character left out as the author gives each one its own rite and moment in the spotlight. Sometimes Alice’s tale got the story right and sometimes she got their descriptions morbidly wrong. Only to find your mind racing back to the classic tale searching the recesses of your brain for every character drawing up their description then reading anxiously for the new description. Alyssa’s struggle with her own heart’s desires grapple with you as well as you want to help her decide between following the matters of this world’s heart or fall for love in Wonderland.  

With adventure and love this story captured my heart. The mind of A. G. Howard is a fantastical thing. And even though this story took years to be penned, it was worth every moment. A. G., I hope your mind is still spinning new tales and that we have only seen the outskirts of the magnificent web that you can weave. I look forward for the magical release of your tale and wait on the wings of a moth for another tale so sweetly wicked.

Find A.G. Howard online:  Website  •   Twitter   •   Facebook

Pre-order Splintered:  Amazon  •  BN.com  •  Indiebound  •  Book Depository

Be on the lookout closer to Splintered's release date for more on this wonderful book and a giveaway! :D


  1. Um, can I just say that you make me want to say THE HELL WITH WHAT I'M READING, I'm reading THIS BOOK. And NO ONE CAN STOP ME. But, I am really liking the one I'm reading so that's not possible atm. But, I think this will be the second or third book I pick up after this one. Like for serious, because this review has gotten into my brain.

  2. ooooh, I loooove Alice in Wonderland and I hadn't even heard of this one but it sounds amazing. I'm so adding it to my list. Great review!

  3. From the moment I lay my eyes on the cover the first time I saw it, I was hooked. I knew that I NEED this book. The cover is one of the prettiest I have ever seen. Add my fairytale and retelling obsession to that and you have a fangirl <3 I want this book sooooo badly!

  4. What a beautiful review! I'm in total agreement - I adore anything Alice and LOVED this book. Started reading it the moment I got it and now I rave about it to everyone! XD

  5. I just won a copy of this book and I love it so far!:) Thanks for the wonderful review!