All Posts Filed in ‘Products & reviews

Book review: “After Alice” by Gregory Maguire

Gregory Maguire, author of amongst others the ‘Wicked’ books, is known for his fictional novels in which he gives a new take on well known fantasy stories. He has recently published “After Alice”, in which Alice’s friend Ada follows her to Wonderland. We see the story we know so well through her eyes.


Although I have never read Maguire’s other books, I am familiar with the musical ‘Wicked’, which was based on his book. I was thrilled with the original take on the familiar ‘Wizard of Oz’ tale and hoped he had done the same to the Alice in Wonderland story. However, I am sorry to say that I was quite disappointed.

“After Alice” in fact tells two tales: the one about Ada, following Alice through the rabbit hole, and the one about Alice’s sister, Ada’s governess, and other people who remain in Oxford and have to deal with the disappearance of both girls.

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Book review: “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland Decoded” by David Day

The recently published book “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland decoded” claims to explain the meaning of the ‘Alice’ story. The author identifies all kinds of hidden references behind the story on many levels, including links to mathematical problems, the classics, and real people that lived in Victorian Oxford.

The premise

Alices-Adventures-in-Wonderland-Decoded-The-Full-Text-of-Lewis-Carrolls-Novel-with-its-Many-Hidden-Meanings-Revealed-0According to author David Day, it is almost impossible that the ‘Alice’ story does not have a deeper meaning. Lewis Carroll was many things: a reverend, a mathematician fond of the subject of logic, schooled in the classics, very critical towards the way dean Liddell was running Christ Church college, and much more. Also, besides the ‘Alice’ books, he published many critical pamphlets and articles with similar underlying references. Therefore, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland must be more than merely a children’s story.

Day argues that the story is centrally:

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The Annotated Alice: 150th anniversary deluxe edition

Yesterday, a richly illustrated and expanded collector’s edition of Martin Gardner’s The Annotated Alice was released. This deluxe edition celebrates the 150th anniversary of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.


The Anniversary Deluxe Edition of this well-known ‘Alice bible’ compiles over half a century of scholarship by leading Carrollian experts to reveal the history and full depth of the Alice books and their author.

This volume brings together Martin Gardner’s legendary original 1960 publication, The Annotated Alice; his follow-ups, More Annotated Alice and the Definitive Edition; his continuing explication through the Knight Letter magazine; and masterly additions and updates edited by Mark Burstein, president emeritus of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America. This anniversary edition of The Annotated Alice is therefore the most comprehensive collection of Alice materials ever published in a single volume.

The deluxe anniversary edition includes amongst others:

  • A preface by Mark Burstein, president emeritus of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America, and all of Gardner’s introductions to other editions
  • Over 100 new or updated annotations, collected since the publication of Martin Gardner’s Definitive Edition of The Annotated Alice in 1999
  • More than 100 new illustrations, in vibrant color, by Salvador Dalí, Beatrix Potter, Ralph Steadman, and 42 other artists and illustrators, in addition to the original artwork by Sir John Tenniel
  • A filmography of every Alice-related film by Carroll scholar David Schaefer

You can order the book via my webshop or directly at

Alice in Wonderland Halloween costumes!

October is approaching, which means: time to prepare for Halloween!

If you want to dress up like an Alice in Wonderland character for Halloween, look no further, because I have plenty of costumes for sale in my webshop. To make it easy for you, I have made a selection of the ‘darkest’ costumes available.

‘Alice’ Halloween costumes

How about dressing up as a ‘bloody’ Alice? You can be Malice in Wonderland, or dress up like the Alice from American McGee’s horror video game.

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Reproducing the original manuscript “Alice’s Adventures Under Ground” (Kickstarter campaign)

In honour of the 150th anniversary of Alice in Wonderland, Cobblestone Productions is planning to release a special edition of “Alice’s Adventures Under Ground” – the original manuscript that Lewis Carroll wrote for the real Alice, and that eventually led to the publication of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”.

aaugThe aim of the project is to produce a facsimile that mimics the look and feel of the original manuscript.

The book is made to look exactly like the book was the day Lewis Carroll handed it to Alice. It will have the exact same dimensions as the real manuscript, the same cover design, and will use similar coloured paper. The ink colour has been improved to make it appear new again, as if the text was recently written.

The book is being published under licence and in collaboration with the British Library.

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Alice in a World of Wonderlands

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the publication of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”, a book has been compiled about all translations ever made worldwide. It is called “Alice in World of Wonderlands” and is now available.

Alice in a World of WonderlandsThis extensive book consists of three volumes.

In part 1, you can find essays about how translators from each country struggled with translating both Alice stories to their own language.

In the second part you can find back-translations of a certain passage from the Mad Tea Party chapter. By translating the translations back to English, you can determine how much of the original passage has remained intact, and what puns or other aspects were lost in translation.

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Book review: “Off with her heart”, by Amy Dale

I was asked to review the book “Off with her heart”, by Amy Dale. Below you can read my opinion about it.

You can buy the book at

“Off with her heart” revolves around a bookish young girl named Katy, who fails to receive any love from her parents and feels very different and misunderstood. By accident, she enters Wonderland, and becomes the Queen of Hearts.

With this angle, Dale has succeeded in taking a special approach to the books we know so well. Instead of the tired concept of ‘Alice returns to Wonderland once more’, she makes us see Wonderland through the eyes of the Queen of Hearts, who actually is not as bad as we all knew her to be.

Admittedly, this concept of ‘viewing the story through the eyes of another character’ is not new. It’s been done several times before, like “Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West” is the story of the not-really-that-wicked Witch of the West and how she came to be like that. In that story, the original main character (Dorothy) is just ‘passing by’.

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