Saturday, February 16, 2013

Review: Splintered by A.G. Howard



YA/ FANTASY/ Romance

3.5 stars out of 5
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.


My Review: 

This was an adventure in wonderland that I’m glad I fall into! Howard really did create a remarkable, slightly warped, but still exciting twist to Wonderland. Honestly, with all the other Wonderland twists and retellings, I wasn't hoping for much, maybe a little bit of a difference, however, I feel Howard created something truly unique and thrilling. She created a completely new tell for Alice and Wonderland.

Other than the reviews that drew my interest, I feel it was the cover that just had the final pull for me to read it. That cover is just amazing, simple beautiful and very unique. A book does need a cover that captures the reader’s attention, and Splintered does. It’s an all-around impressive story.

I've been collecting bugs since I was ten; it's the only way I can stop their whispers. Sticking a pin through the guy of an insect shuts it up pretty quick." 

Though I’m going to be honest, I wasn’t sure  how to rate this book, I know I did really enjoy this story, loved it. What I loved was Howard’s interpretation of Wonderland, how she really took and made her own version of Alice in Wonderland. That part was simply amazing, but I felt that the book could have been a lot better. I felt the actions scenes a bit slow and they didn't hold my interest that much.  Action scenes are hard enough for me to read sometimes, hard to find some that I can read without skimming, and I did, at times, end up doing that.

Howard's characters were pretty unique, especially Alyssa. She didn't blow me out of the water, but I did enjoy her character. She’s feared that she would end up losing her mind, just like every other woman in her family, just like her mother. Raving about Alice and Wonderland, not only that but she can hear bugs talk. Yeah, talk. However, she slowly begins to realize that maybe it isn't mad ravings, that wonderland really does exist and that her family might somehow be involved with that magical world. I did see some character growth in Alyssa, but she honestly  isn't the kind of heroine that I usually love reading about. I love the kick ass, stand up for themselves and don’t take crap from anyone, kind of heroines; you know Alex Andros and Katy Swatze kind of girls. (hehehe see a trend there?)

Now! Let’s talk about some fictional boys (my favorite topic). In Splintered you have two, yes, two yummy boys. The good one and the bad one. Oh my, are you for real? Yes, the classic good boy and the infuriating bad boy trio! I do have to say I enjoyed both characters, but my heart went with the good*snickers* ole bad boy! Can I get a Morpheus!!! Yes, even though good boy Jeb is a bit yummy, there was something about Morpheus that made him a bit better. Though, I just have a thing for bad boys ;) Jeb , to me, was just too much at times. Swoony, yes, but just a bit over-protective of Alyssa, he didn't believe she could stand on her own. See, I like a guy who knows his chick can handle herself, still has her back, but let’s her kick some ass, too.  And that is how Morpheus is, plus he’s got that charm that made my toes curl!

"You understand the logic behind the illogical."

The creatures and characters in Wonderland were what really made the story! Howard  did have some major  twists with the story, and she did a fine job  surprising me. I loved the things she bought to attention, small details, and how she interpreted things different.  This Wonderland is nothing like it seems. The detail Howard pays to each character and their story is just fascinating. And then the deeper and deeper you get it just gets weirder, in a good way, and curiouser. The imagery is pretty darn amazing, Howard’s version is filled with all different kinds of creatures old and new. Though some of them could be quite creepy, but they each had an allure to them. The pacing of the book, was very weird, no, at times it moved just right, but then it felt a bit too rushed. So, it was mix of those two, but it didn't really affect the overall story.

Howard created an very alluring Wonderland. Full of creatures that I would never have imagined. She took me into a world I really couldn't imagine, and made me see the original story of Alice in Wonderland in a whole new light. So, if you are looking for a new spin on a classic, give Splintered a try! 


  1. Glad you enjoyed this book but I'm sorry you didn't fall in love with it like I did. I liked Alyssa because she was different from the ones I read. For me it was just such a change of pace and I loved it. And yes Morpheus! He is an absolutely amazing character. I lurvee him and his darkly charming ways. You really explained the world Howard created well. Great review Magen.

    1. Thank you Teresa!!! I wish I could of fall in love with it, but I did enjoy it so much!! And I liked Alyssa, too, she was different :D Morpheus is an amazing character! Thanks for stopping by and reading my review *hugs*

  2. YAY you finished it! :) I'm soo happy you enjoyed this but it didn't blow you away. Now, I'm curious to see how I'll like it. I am really liking the sound of the characters and the plot. And Morpheus.....LOVE HIM ALREADY!!! I CANNOT express how much I want to meet him...soon! LoL ;p

    Great review, Magen! :)

    ~ Maida
    Literary Love Affair 

    1. Can't wait for you to read it!! And Yes!! Morpheus!!!!! hah ahahaha

  3. Great review! I definitely felt the same way about this one. I loved Howard's interpretation of Wonderland because it was definitely different. I totally loved Jebb though. I really liked Morpheus too but there was just something about Jebb. :)

    1. Thank you Traci!! Howard's version of Wonderland was pretty amazing! Ha ha Jebb was smexy!

      Thanks for stopping by:D

  4. I'm always torn between being morbidly curious and mortified that someone would want to tackle our beloved Wonderland, but I have to say after avoiding it like the plauge, I'm excited to read this baby!
    I'm sad you didn't love it to bits and pieces but I'm very much liking the sound of this Morpheous character!
    Great review, sweetness! =D

    1. I really enjoyed it, but I hate that I couldn't love it! But it's worth the read to just experience the world Howard creates! Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Thank you for the review... I can't wait to get my hands on this book!

    1. You're very welcome sweetie!! I hope you enjoy it when you do get your hands on it :D

  6. All I saw was 3.5. LOL

    I'm always a bit hesitant on reading re-tellings... ish. I don't know. Keep hearing all sorts of awesome things about this one, though. Funny how you mentioned the cover being the main pull because in all the good I've heard about it, the cover was mentioned in most of them, lol.

    Awesome review, girl!


Feel free to leave me a comment! I love reading what you guys have to say!
My blog is an award-free blog. I do my best to reply, but I don't always have the time.

I do appreciate when a comment is posted. They always bring a smile to my face!