Thursday, May 23, 2013

Review: Splintered by A.G. Howard

Splintered (Splintered, #1)Title: Splintered 
Author: A.G. Howard
 Amulet Books
Publishing Date: January 1st 2013
Pages: 371
Genre:  YA Fairytale Retelling
Series:  Splintered #1
Source: Audio



This stunning debut captures the grotesque madness of a mystical under-land, as well as a girl’s pangs of first love and independence. Alyssa Gardner hears the whispers of bugs and flowers—precisely the affliction that landed her mother in a mental hospital years before. This family curse stretches back to her ancestor Alice Liddell, the real-life inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alyssa might be crazy, but she manages to keep it together. For now.

When her mother’s mental health takes a turn for the worse, Alyssa learns that what she thought was fiction is based in terrifying reality. The real Wonderland is a place far darker and more twisted than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, Alyssa must pass a series of tests, including draining an ocean of Alice’s tears, waking the slumbering tea party, and subduing a vicious bandersnatch, to fix Alice’s mistakes and save her family. She must also decide whom to trust: Jeb, her gorgeous best friend and secret crush, or the sexy but suspicious Morpheus, her guide through Wonderland, who may have dark motives of his own.

I was a sucker for this cover, it is what grabbed me and at the moment I didn't even care what the book as about. Awesome cover. I read the synopsis and thought... hmm sounds interesting. I bought the audio, I listened to the audio, and I said WOW what an amazing book. Love it, must have it on my shelf, can't wait for the next book... which by the way has a cover that is also AMAZING! 

Alyssa has a very intense life. She has a mother who is in a mental hospital because of an accident that happened when Alyssa was a child. Alyssa's mother, Alison, believes in wonderland and believes there is a curse on their family. On one of Alyssa's visits her mother goes crazy and is now being signed up for electric shock therapy and Alyssa knows she is the only one that can stop it all, because she knows what her mother is talking about. She sees things, hears things, and starts to believe that her mother was never mentally ill to begin with. Alyssa finds the rabbit hole and ends up in Wonderland with nutty creatures, dangerous foes, and a long lost childhood friend. To make things more difficult, her long time crush and best friend, Jeb, follows her down. Now they are both on a quest to break the curse to save her mother. 

I absolutely loved this book. The world building really wowed me! I loved being in Wonderland with all the fascinating creatures, colorful elements, and crazy characters. Everything about Wonderland was familiar but new. I felt it was the old Wonderland but creepier and with a mix of modern. I loved it. The world building was definitely part of the allure. 

Another part of the allure was the story. It was a totally new twist for me and I loved it. I was able to follow easily and emerge myself fully into the story. The story had many twists and turns and so much treachery, I was unsure who was good, where was up, and what to do next... but only in the way the author fully intended. It was creepy, dark, mysterious, and a very adventurous read. It was just so much to watch Alyssa and Jeb work through the events and puzzles that were placed in front of them and during all the hoops they jump through, their relationship grew. 

The love story was wonderful in this book. It was great to see them start off as friends and to see the passion that sat deep inside them both. Jeb and Alyssa were the last ones to realize the other had feelings for them too. They only had a few kisses but each one blew my mind, they were so powerful, I got goosebumps and  toe tingles. The relationship was not forced and not rushed, it was just perfect. 

I loved both the characters of Alyssa and Jeb. Alyssa did have her moments where I wanted to slap her. She loved to live in world of oblivion and that bothered me a bit. Things that were right in front of her she just refused to see, but once she got it, she got it. She did change drastically from the beginning of the story and the character growth was huge. I enjoyed her journey very much. 

Jeb was oh so swoon worthy. I loved every scene and every moment with Jeb. He too was so blind and dumb at times when it came to Alyssa but she didn't make it easy for him. It was one of those things where if both characters could be on the same page at the same time it would all be golden. Jeb was somewhere in the middle of big brother, best friend, and first love. He had a bit of everything and new when to play which pat. They only main jab I have for Jeb, he was a bit too protective at times and he came on a bit too strong for me. He too changed oodles by the ending. 

The book ended kind of open ended and I can't wait to get to the next book. It was a great story and there is so much more coming! 

Awesome and Magnificent. If you like dark fantasy and fairy tale retellings, wait no longer... grab this book and give a good read. The audio is awesome too. The narrator did everyone right and I think if you like audio, this book will not disappoint and if you are not sure you like audio... this book will make you a fan. 


  1. The world-building was fantastic, wasn't it? So glad you got the audio and loved it, too. Wish I had time for another listen! :)

  2. This isthmus in awesome twist on Alice in Wonderland. I certainly can't wait for Unhinged. Great review.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

  3. Excellent review. This one has been on my list for a while. I really need to grab it and get going! Thanks for the reminder!

  4. I read this book and still haven't written my review. >.< I gave it 5 stars. It absolutely blew me away with its dark beauty, and I didn't know which way was up. Who to trust? Who was lying? The only difficulty I had was picturing some of the settings. It's just me, lol. I've always been fascinated with Alice in Wonderland and how strange it is, and this book took it to a new strangeness level in a great and entertaining way! Are you going to buy the hardback or paperback version, too?

  5. I loved it too! Can't wait for the next one!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  6. Sounds awesome, I've requested it at the library, seems to be taking a long time to come through, I want to read it even more now after reading your review.

    Thanks for visiting my blog through FF. I'm now following. Looking forward to seeing more great reviews.

  7. You've got me all excited. I'm still basquing in the glow of Meyer's retellings. I' do hope they have the audio on my overdrive libraries.


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