This review is spoiler-free!
Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter
Series: White Rabbit Chronicles #1
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Young Adult
Release Date: September 25th 2012 by Harlequin Teen
Format: Hardcover, 404 pages
Find it here: Goodreads || Book Depository
She won’t rest until she’s sent every walking corpse back to its grave. Forever.
If anyone had told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that’s all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.
Her father was right. The monsters are real.
To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn’t careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies.
First of all, I’m surprised at how much I ended up liking this book. I went into it with relatively low expectations after all the mediocre reads I’d been getting from my backlist courtesy of my 2019 TBR jar picks, but I was very pleasantly surprised when I ended up genuinely enjoying the storyline. It’s a really creative twist on both the idea of zombies and the classic Alice in Wonderland story, and the mesh between the two in this series is almost subtle, but still very obviously there in a way I really have to appreciate.
While the romance of the story did absolutely nothing for me (surprise surprise — I’m so picky with my early 2010 romances) (we won’t talk about romances before then) and I did find it a little annoying how it popped up, I was able to remind myself that it was pretty accurate considering that they’re all teenagers even when they didn’t always act like it, and Showalter’s honestly really capturing writing didn’t hurt anything either. By the end of the book, I actually think it was growing on me a lot. It wasn’t a massive focus on the plot thanks to the zombies, and I found that super refreshing.
Seriously, Showalter is really good at what she does, considering I don’t think I would have liked this had the writing not been so good.
One thing I will say, though, and maybe this is a little bit of a spoiler depending on how you look at it (I won’t include names, and there are a ton of characters, so it’s not bad), but did there have to be a rivalry over a boy between all the characters? Come on, that’s so annoying. Without that, I probably would have actually found the characters great, but that did irk me to see. Drop the guy, ladies!
Anyway. I definitely liked this a lot more than I was expecting to, which is great! Totally a cool twist on the whole Alice in Wonderland story, for sure.
Thanks for reading!