My rating: 4 of 5 stars
First, I want to thank First to Read for the advanced copy of this book.
I loved ALICE, the first book in this series & was really excited to be able to receive this copy before the pub date. Although this book starts off where ALICE ended, it definitely isn’t as dark and twisted as ALICE was. RED QUEEN, to me, is more about Alice coming to terms and accepting her feelings towards Hatcher, as well as embracing her powers as a Magician.
As Alice & Hatcher finally emerge from the tunnel from the Old City, they find “a blackened waste stretching for miles”. Alice was expecting “open fields and tress, a verdant land” as described by Pipkin. So begins their journey into this new world with the end goal of finding Hatcher’s daughter, who was taken away to the East. Along the way, they encounter giants, a goblin, the Black King, the White Queen and discover the truth about the Red Queen.
In ALICE, there was more violence and “unsavory” characters but RED QUEEN is more about self-discovery. I liked RED QUEEN for different reasons. To some, the beginning may feel drawn out and tedious, but I didn’t mind so much. It gives the reader more background on where Alice came from and why she is the way she is.
I love this re-imagining of the Alice characters. Some have been recreated as humans with magical powers yet still obtain the characteristics (like the names) of the original Lewis Carroll characters. The relationship between the Black King, the White Queen and the Red Queen was unexpected, to me, but worked quite well & I loved these three characters.
While Alice’s journey to the White Queen’s castle has some obstacles, they didn’t seem as challenging as I might have expected. The ending was anticlimactic and I had hoped for more of a struggle between Alice & the White Queen. Despite this, I still enjoyed the story and I look forward to Alice’s next adventure.