Author: A. G. Howard
Publisher: Amulet Books
Publication Date: January 1, 2013
Genre: Urban fantasy
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.
There is honestly only one word I need to describe this book: exquisite. A. G. Howard’s debut novel is pure perfection, an absolutely brilliant story concocted from fairytales, chaos, and love, set against the lush backdrop of Wonderland. Alyssa’s unique story of self-discovery and first love wraps its vines around you so tightly that not even the vorpal sword could free you (not that you’d want it to: it’s that good). After discovering this book in June 2012 and waiting the eight long months for its release, I can happily say it was worth the wait, and I’ve been left with with a hunger for more books from A. G. Howard stronger than any a tumtum berry could induce. Feel the magic: read Splintered.