Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Book 6- "Alice in Wonderland" by Lewis Carroll

For the first time, I'm at a bit of a loss as to what to say about a story. I chose "Alice in Wonderland" specifically this week, as I have a lot of projects I'm trying to catch up on and I knew "Alice" was probably the shortest book on my list. I read the entire thing in about an hour and a half, and now I have to figure out what to say about it.

The thing that stumps me is that I didn't LOVE it, but I didn't dislike it either. I think part of my ambivalence toward this particular book is due to the fact that I've seen and adored both the Disney animated movie version and the recent live-action adaptation featuring Johnny Depp, so I already knew the basics of the story. It sort of confirms to me what I've already decided, which is that I should try as much as possible not to see a movie version of these classics before I read the book, because it definitely affects my opinion of the story itself.

I'm not going to summarize the story as I usually do-- partially because it would be a completely wacky story to try to summarize, but mostly just because it's such a well known story. Part of the complication with the story vs. the movies is that the movies combine "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass" (the sequel), so when I read the story, I didn't know what to expect.

I liked the depiction in the book of the tea party-- the animated movie version of the Mad Hatter is a little sillier than the book version. I think that the Johnny Depp version of the Hatter is more in character with the book version, although the Hatter does not play as significant a role in the book as Depp does in the movie (although, having not read "Through the Looking Glass", perhaps the Hatter's role is more significant in the sequel.) There were a few other characters and scenes I don't remember from either movie, but having just bought the Disney animated version for Addison, perhaps I will recognize these characters in watching the movie again.

Overall, I think that the most significant thing reading "Alice in Wonderland" did for me is make me desire to read "Through the Looking Glass", mostly just because I'm interested in drawing the lines to see which characters / events come from which book and what was completely made up in the screenplays. I think the story was obviously written for children, but would be too complicated for most children under 12 or so to understand upon reading. It is a story one can appreciate as an adult, although it definitely feels like a kid's story... if I hadn't already seen the movies, I'm not sure the plot of this book would have held my interest.

1 comment:

Sharon said...

I never really liked the movie, so I doubt I'd read the book.