May 30, 2011

Alice in Zombieland - Book Review

Alice in Zombieland

Lewis Carroll and Nickolas Cook

There seems to be, what I can only describe as, a fad at the moment of taking literary classics and historic icons and thrusting them into the world of horror. Novels such as Pride and Prejudice, Little Vampire Women and Emma and the Vampires are crawling out of the wordwork at an alarming rate. Personally they don’t appeal to me and as such I have resisted the urge to read any of them, I am sure they have an audience otherwise they just don’t grab me.

Maybe it is for this very reason that Alice in Zombieland fell so flat for me. It has been many, many moons since I have read Lewis Carroll’s novel, so if Alice in Zombieland achieved anything for me it was that it has made me want to revisit the classic.

The story in Alice in Zombieland does not involve Woody Harrelson or Jesse Eisenburg, more is the shame, but does in fact follow young Alice as she tumbles into an open grave where she then meets all the characters you might expect, such as The Queen and Mad Hatter, in fact it is basically Lewis Carroll’s story with the odd change made here and there to accommodate the undead factor. That being said there isn’t any real zombie carnage until the very end. Everything else is hinted at, such as Alice’s voracious appetite.

That all being said it is hard to fault the writing as it is basically Carroll’s work, hence the author’s credit, and the use of words and conversation is as charming as you might hope it would be.
If Nickolas Cook had really wanted to impress I would have much preferred he had taken the main characters and locations and put them in an entirely new story, where he would have had free rein to throw a totally unique twist into this sub-genre.

Overall I can’t fault the writing, or the accompanying art, but I do find fault with the execution. I really am not sure who this would appeal to aside from an absolute undead completist. Even then that might be stretching it.

Review by Jude Felton

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