BOOK REVIEW: ALICE’S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND- by Lewis Carrol illustrated by Camille Garcia Rose

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Alice Through The Looking Glass are every animator and artist’s dream. The worlds and creatures are so surreal, insane, distinct and imaginative that there’s endless possibility in the ways they can be brought to life. In Camille Rose Garcia’s case, she drew Wonderland’s inhabitants in her trademark gothic style.

The story itself is well known and a classic for a reason. In spite of it’s reputation as completely off the walls, there’s a definite method to Caroll’s madness as this book as is full of clever wordplay and brilliant games of logic. It’s so clever and complex, yet so simple and childlike, that there’s a lot in this novel for children and adults alike.

As for Garcia’s paintings, there are some truly beautiful images in this book, most notably its

caterpillar.jpg

front cover and its eye popping illustration of Alice’s confrontation with playing card-winged butterflies. Yet, unlike with Garcia’s work on Cinderella, this novel did not quite live up to the book’s artistic potential.

I was hoping for a tonne of giant sprawling pictures of Wonderland’s environments, but  a lot of the pictures were of fairly mundane things including mushrooms, cakes and keys. Although a lot of the characters were beautifully brought to life (especially the rabbits-Garcia draws wonderful rabbits), she didn’t put as much care into bringing to life the landscape as many pictures are devoid of backgrounds and instead we have a backdrop of her trademark washed out yellows. Another issue was that the colour scheme was too mundane and washed out for a world that is meant to be bold, bright and eye popping.

I think a lot of the issues, however, may be due to the kindle format rather than Garcia’s artwork. From what I’ve researched, a lot of the images are bigger and bolder in the print version and some of the pictures that are tiny on the kindle are spread across two pages in the book.

In short, Alice In Wonderland is a classic that every man, woman and child should read. The book is reasonably priced and if you like the illustrations, then it’s worth checking out. However, whatever you do, get the print version instead of the kindle because the kindle just doesn’t do it justice.

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