Nicky Peacock - Lost in Wonderland (The Twisted and the Brave, #1)Published: April 14, 2016 by Evernight Teen
Genres: Horror, Thriller, Young Adult
Find on: Amazon, Book Depository, Goodreads
Monsters, serial killers, and imaginary friends—being a Wonderlander can be murder...
Once upon a time, Kayla was lost. Then she found Wonderland, but not the one you know. Run by ex-government agents and funded by an eccentric Silicon Valley billionaire, this Wonderland is the name of a collective of highly trained vigilantes who hunt serial killers. Now Kayla, aka Mouse, works tirelessly alongside her fellow Wonderlanders, Rabbit and Cheshire, baiting dangerous murderers. But even her extensive training hasn’t prepared her for the return of her older brother…
Shilo has spent most of his life in an insane asylum, convinced his mother was abducted by a sinister Alaskan monster who lures the lost away to feast upon their flesh. And now he’s certain that his sister is in the same monster’s crosshairs. But if Shilo is going to save what’s left of his family, he’ll have to convince his sister that maybe, just maybe, we’re all a little mad.
~LOST IN WONDERLAND is a murder-y, horror retelling of Alice in Wonderland and if you couldn't already tell by my rabid GR updates, I was obsessed from the start.
Although born as Kayla, Mouse has been pinballed amongst foster families after her father commits suicide and her brother is taken into a psychiatric ward, so you can understand she's had it hard. After being discovered by former government agents, she becomes an essential part of "Wonderland" - where she's trained to be an assassin and kill the nasty baddies.
Alongside her POV are many others, including Shilo and Mr. Custard, Rabbit, and Kushtaka, but Mouse exceeds them as the primary.
Personally, the only thing that annoyed me about this was the inane amount of POVs, considering its a short book to begin with. Barely 200 pages, which isn't something I'd exactly complain over. Maybe that's just me being unable to juggle numerous diverse voices, but yeah. No comprehendo.
Also, Mouse prided herself on being this sad little orphan. Wah, look at me. I have to kill people to make a living, like Dexter or Rumple from OUAT. But literally, she'd be walking around in Jimmy Choos and Dior pumps. Get real, hunny. Who're you trying to play?
The writing is fabulous, like, effortlessly so, and contrary to others, I had no problem with the Alice in Wonderland references. I mean, come on, people, what do you expect from a retelling? I was unbelievably fond of this book, and I usually have trouble with retellings. Honestly, it was as enjoyable as an episode of OUAT. Definitely the type of book horror aficionados will enjoy.
"Hello, Mouse," he says. "I'm Hatter. I'm here to help you."
My eyes remain narrow and my grip on the knife tightens.
"But I don't want to go among mad people," I say.
"Oh, you can't help that. We're all mad here. I'm mad, you're mad."
~As promised, here's our interview! Just in case, someone tries to question whether I've actually read this book or not (unfortunately, it's happened more often than y'all can believe), this interview occurred before I finished the book. Go roast some marshmallows, trolls. Thanks. x
~Hi, Nicky! Welcome to Rebelle Reads. It's an absolute delight to have you today!
Thank you so much for having me :)
Q2. Can you tell me what initially inspired you for LOST IN WONDERLAND? I've always been a huge Alice In Wonderland fanatic myself (it's my unbirthday!), so I've been undoubtedly excited to read it.
It was initially inspired by Alice in Wonderland's 150th anniversary last year. I wanted to write a book that honored the themes, such as growing up, madness and being lost, without just transposing the whole story into another genre - I combined this thought with another about a vigilante group who hunt serial killers and Lost in Wonderland was born. I'm currently working on new books in this series based on other classic children's books.
Q3. Can you tell me a bit about your writing process? Do you sit with a mug of tea? A soundtrack of ocean-y tunes? Overlook the stars for some thought?
You make it sound so romantic! I tend to try to get out of the house. There're far too many other jobs at home that can be done to procrastinate. I go to a local pub and have a blackcurrant and soda and try to get at least a couple of hours of work done. I do also write before bed. I find late night writing sessions soothing. They calm my mind ready for sleep. Having quite a dark imagination, I suffer from nightmares so by writing before I go to bed I seem to exorcise them. I do listen to music for certain scenes, especially emotional ones.
Q4. Oooh! Do you happen to be a fan of Disney films?
Yes, I adore Disney, although I like all cartoons. My favorite Disney movies are Little Mermaid, Aladdin, and Robin Hood. They were the ones that I grew up with, and I watch if I want to couch-out with a warm duvet and snacks. I also quite often do this with Netflix (I'd totally recommend Stranger Things) I also absolutely love The Nightmare Before Christmas, and I'm planning to have my Christmas decorations all Halloween-themed this year.
Q5. Are you planning on writing anything next? If so, can you tell me a little about it?
I'm doubling my writing efforts at the moment and working on the last in the Battle of the Undead series, Bad Karma and also the next book in The Twisted and the Brave series, The Assassin of Oz. I'm also still promoting the first in this series, Lost in Wonderland. So it's all go!
Q6. And do you happen to have any book recommendations? Any other retellings, perhaps? I'm in the midst of a bookish slump, so I'm always excited for some bookie inspiration!
There are quite a few out there at the moment. The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. The Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard and The Shadow Queen by C J Redwine. If you are looking for a historical vampires VS zombies read ready for Halloween, my book Traitors' Gate is currently free on Amazon.