Alice in Wonderland

By Lewis Carroll, Illustrated by Rebecca Dautremer,

Book cover of Alice in Wonderland

Book description

When Alice sees the White Rabbit running by on the river bank, she follows him, tumbling down a Rabbit Hole into a magical world where nothing is ever as it seems...

Lewis Carroll's classic story has delighted children since 1865. One hundred and fifty years since its first publication, Hodder…

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Why read it?

8 authors picked Alice in Wonderland as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

We absorb this tale, like Peter Pan's, from childhood, and it provides us all with a leaning to light-hearted fantasy and a story pattern of leaving the real world and returning to it. An adventure may begin by going through a wardrobe as in the first Narnia novel, or into and out of Tom Bombadil's Old Forest in Tolkien. Alice goes down a rabbit hole. There are rabbit holes, wardrobes, forests, sailboats.... The world Alice gets to is full of strangeness appealed to me for Orpheus Rising whose characters have a similar variety.

Inimitable, surreal, nonsensical, logic-defying, disorienting, and absolutely wonder-filled. I love the craziness of the characters. They talk in riddles or nonsense, some are playful or possibly wise, some are ill-mannered, some despotic and cruel. Time, space, and identity cease to have meaning in any conventional sense. The child Alice, boundlessly curious, drops down the rabbit hole into a fantasy world that makes no sense at all and yet somehow mirrors our own world. With John Tenniel’s original illustrations, it delighted me as a child and continues to do so as an adult.

From Martin's list on fantasy that breaks the mould.

Everyone is familiar with the classic tale of Alice, but mostly the bright and breezy Disney version or perhaps the original John Tenniel illustrated book. This version picks up on the darker, more surreal elements of the text in illustrations that are perhaps a bit unsettling for some children (not mine – the more unsettling the better for them!). This book is so absolutely gorgeous, that when I first saw it on a trip to Barcelona, I just had to have it, despite not being able to read the Spanish text or having room in my baggage. But have no…

The Secret Order of the Scepter & Gavel

By Nicholas Ponticello,

Book cover of The Secret Order of the Scepter & Gavel

Nicholas Ponticello Author Of The Secret Order of the Scepter & Gavel

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Who am I?

Author Writer Teacher Reader Lego builder Musical connoisseur

Nicholas' 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

Vanderough University prepares its graduates for life on Mars. Herbert Hoover Palminteri enrolls at VU with the hope of joining the Martian colony in 2044 as a member of its esteemed engineer corps. But then Herbert is tapped to join a notorious secret society: the Order of the Scepter and Gavel. As a new pledge, Herbert has to prove himself in a series of dangerous initiation rites, even if it means risking his life and the lives of his friends.

Many years later, when Herbert thinks the scandals of his youth are finally dead and buried, a murder occurs in the Martian colony, and Herbert starts to suspect it is linked to the secret Order of the Scepter and Gavel of his past.

We all know this book as a children's bookor maybe just secondhand as a cultural reference. What few of us think of the book as being is as a brilliant work of the philosophy of maths, language, and self-reference. Yet Lewis Carroll in fact was a mathematician and what is unique about his writing is how he hides his learning with such wit and elegance, that, well, we all forget the book is actually serious stuff.

From Martin's list on thinking skills.

Curiouser and curiouser. What's not to love about the story of a girl who travels down a rabbit hole and discovers a Wonderland? But my love of this story comes down to the funny observations of Alice. Her simple remarks on the absurdity of Wonderland translate so well into wise critiques of our own world. One of my favorites being her response to the caterpillar’s question of who she is. Alice replies, “I—I hardly know, Sir, just at present—at least I know who I was when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several…

Everyone knows the story of Alice and Wonderland. It’s a book full of logical twists and eccentric characters, seen through the eyes of Alice who seems to be the only sensible person in a zany upside-down world. It’s a surprise to discover that this book was written by a dull Oxford University maths lecturer called Charles Dodgson. Through his alter-ego Lewis Carroll, Dodgson used the character of Alice to explore many of the playful, philosophical aspects of mathematics and logic: infinity, paradoxes, symmetry, and abstraction. Arithmetical ideas crop up all over the place, often nonsensical until you realise that numbers…

A fantastical book full of imagination and fun. Perhaps not a laugh out loud but the entire situation Alice finds herself in with some impossible characters makes me giggle. Lewis Carroll creates a world full of vivid imagery and wonderful language that is not only engaging but fun too! It changed children’s literature and taught me that you’re only limited by your imagination, and can even make up another silly language. I like to think that my books are similar in that they’re a form of escapism where strange creatures talk and weird things happen. How fun!

The Cheshire Cat was one of the first literary critters I ever fell in love with as a child, and Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass are two books that I continually return to as an adult, certain of finding new delights. My two favorite things when I was young were books and animals, so it’s no surprise that I was enraptured by the Cheshire Cat from the get-go. More than just his cat-ness, however, were his trademark mischievous grin; his ability to appear and disappear at will; the creative liberties he takes with the English language; and his…

From Gwen's list on with cats as characters.

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