Title // Down the Rabbit Hole
Author // Julia Crane
Publication Month // December 2016
Publisher // Valknut Press
Genre // Young Adult, Fantasy
Down the Rabbit hole is a twisted tale of two sisters bound by blood and separated by magick.
Alice is not the lovable girl the stories depict. A lifetime of pain and illusion has left her disturbed. Unpredictable. Dangerous.
For years, she’s watched her twin sister – a girl born into light and destined for power – with great envy. According to the prophecy, only one of them will rule. Only one of them will survive.
What will Alice sacrifice? The sister she hates, the man she loves, or the innocent lives caught in her twisted web of magick?
Down the Rabbit Hole by Julia Crane is like an Alice in Wonderland reimagining crossed with Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake, although unfortunately, I don’t think it lives up to the expectations.
The story is fair – Alice is not who we imagine her to be, nor is Wonderland. There’s a prophecy in play and the lives of everyone Alice cares for are at stake. That’s a great premise to begin with, and there are definitely aspects of this story that I was really interested in, especially the idea of dimensions and magic that Crane has written into her book. The overall execution of the plot, however does feel to be lacking, and there were times when I wasn’t sure what was going on and had to reread sections a few times to sort it out.
Neither main protagonist – Alice or Lacie – were particularly engaging. Both girls, seventeen going on eighteen, came across as much younger their actions and attitudes were quite jarring in context. They both accepted a lot of new information very quickly and Alice in particular was able to master new skills quite quickly as she was required to. There were a lot of relationships being thrown out there, including one unfortunate case of instalove.
That said, many of the side characters were quite interesting to read about – the Red and White Queens and the Mad Hatter particularly. We don’t find out much about them by the small scenes we were given were great and left me wanting more. As this appears to be the first book in a series, I may follow up on the second book to see if any of these characters are fleshed out more.
The ending fell a little for me, too, and appeared to have been too easy. I would expect that in future books, there would have to be some complication with how everything was resolved, but it was almost a fairytale ending for the main characters involved.
Ultimately, this book really wasn’t for me, which was disappointing because I do love Alice in Wonderland retellings and reimaginings. Overall I gave Down the Rabbit Hole 2.5 out of 5 stars.
I received a copy of Down the Rabbit Hole from Netgalley in exchange for a fair and honest opinion. All thoughts are my own.