Once Upon A Wonderland
Communicado DJS Oy (2023)
Reviewed by Leigh Kimberly Zoby for Reader Views 03/2023
Alice is no longer the naive teenage girl we first met in author DJ Stoneham’s prequel “Alice Falls Again,” but a full-grown college graduate with a mind of her own destined to once again return to the mystical world of Wonderland.
Alice prides herself on being true to herself, no matter how that may look to outsiders. Once “Upon A Wonderland” begins with Alice and her sisters enjoying a mid-day swim. Without warning, our beloved Alice is swept away in the rip current, being relentlessly sucked under, desperately fighting to stay above water. On the brink of losing consciousness, she finds herself once again on the whimsical shores of Wonderland. Villainous characters have found their way into the realm of Wonderland since Alice’s last visit, wreaking havoc on everything and every one of its inhabitants. Time has become askew, causing Alice to age backward at an unusually fast rate, with each passing hour growing younger. Alice must rescue the love of her life, Jack, stop the chaos that is amuck in Wonderland, and fix the issue with time reversing before it’s too late.
DJ Stoneham has outdone himself in creating a noteworthy fantasy like no other. Once Upon A Wonderland is a delightful reimagination of the beloved fairy tale of the past. Updated with an extended cast of delicious and vile characters, they are sure to keep the reader engaged while racing from page to page as the plot thickens and dangerous agendas come to light. In a whimsical world where oddity is the norm, Stoneham’s vivid imagination adds a sense of amusement with its unique style of scene-setting and descriptiveness of character encounters. These slight peculiarities set the tone for a gripping adventure for young and old alike.
Page after page, the author’s writing style mesmerizes, drawing the reader into the unique qualities only a place such as Wonderland can possess. Alice’s vernacular mimics the logical and quizzical sides to that of the original Lewis Carroll character, reminiscing a sense of nostalgia for readers of the Alice in Wonderland classic. Stoneham’s work compliments Lewis Carroll’s classic by including the scatterbrained Cheshire Cat and the mischievous Queen of Hearts and adding his own twist on their personalities and the importance of Alice’s quest to repair Wonderland.
“Once Upon A Wonderland” is a beautiful blend of a beloved classic with a unique creative enhancement for today’s audiences.