Author: A.G. Howard
Page #: 371
My Rating: 3.5 Stars
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. -Summary from Goodreads
Splintered is an intoxicating world of Wonderland whimsy. We see that Lewis Carroll’s innocent yet maddening world is a lot darker and more terrifying than we’d been led to believe… and full of a lot more bugs. Normally that would wig me out too much to read this book, but the dark, seductiveness of the story kept me entranced and made the whole bug thing less creepy.
Alyssa is an artist/skateboarder who has a secret: she can hear bugs and plants talk. It is an ability that all the women in her family have shared. One that has gotten them locked up in the loony bin generations upon generations, leading back to her great-great-great-grandmother Alice (who was Lewis Carroll’s inspiration). One day she discovers that her family is not insane but cursed. From the prompting of a mysterious moth, and reemerging memories, she follows the clues that lead her to the rabbit hole and down into the real Wonderland.
I liked Alyssa well enough, but I felt that she was over shadowed a bit too much by her best friend Jeb, who can be an over-protective control freak. When she wanted to take a chance, he pulled her back. When she was brave and selfless he admonished her for it saying that she was reckless. It got downright irritating and I was so rooting for her to slap some sense into him. Alas, while she did get mad at him on occasion she forgave him way to easily for my taste and still fell into his arms whenever he justified himself enough. Okay, I think my rant is over… maybe.
With all that said I suppose I’m team Morpheus though perhaps not in the way others are. I don’t ship either of the guys in this story with Alyssa, however Morpheus is “Mysterious. Rebellious. Troubled” and very hot. I can’t say I fully trusted him but he was encouraging and knew that Alyssa had a strength about her and could accomplish anything she set out to do and he would help her if she needed it. That endeared him into my good graces and, along with everything else, made him one of my favorite characters in the book. (Though my dislike of Jeb may have something to do with it as well.)
I definitely didn’t expect that ending and what an ending it was! It was a mixture of bittersweet and adorableness. I will certainly continue this series but I’m hoping that Jeb backs off a little because he was the reason my ratings dropped a star and I don’t want that because I absolutely love this world.