Max G. Bernard's Reviews > Alice in Deadland

Alice in Deadland by Mainak Dhar
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's review
Jan 01, 2012

it was amazing
Read in November, 2011

Post-apocalyptic zombie story with a twist

In a post-apocalyptic world where Alice in Wonderland (or at least its charred damaged remains, is the last surviving book, the survivors face numerous challenges, including walking zombies, conspiratorial efforts to keep them ignorant of the true history of humanity, and most importantly, the quest for something to give them hope of a better life.

The author combines a number of science fiction, fantasy, and fairy tale tropes with stirring action sequences and a very strong and capable female character whose independence, insight, determination, and intelligence will remind some readers of Robert A. Heinlein’s Friday. In this story, the female protagonist Alice has the courage to confront the zombie like Biters and to follow one of them right down the rabbit hole to learn the truth about what’s really behind the curtain in her world.

Good and convincing portraits of a post-apocalyptic world are difficult to do. Stephen King did a great one in The Stand, and Richard Matheson in I am Legend (the basis for three major movies retelling his story in different ways) similarly portrayed a ravaged world beset by dark forces threatening to turn back the clock to the dark ages of ignorance and superstition while wiping out all vestiges of science, reason, and progress. This book belongs in their company, and with its combination of a vision of a bleak landscape of devastation and the disappearance of written knowledge (similar in that respect to H.G. Well’s far future world of Moorlocks and Eloi in The Time Machine), the author’s skilled writing may remind many readers of Walter M. Miller Jr.’s 1961 Hugo winning science fiction novel A Canticle for Leibowitz.

This is a book you won’t want to put down. Heavy on action, and wasting little time on padded description, it brings to life an incredible cast of characters in a highly entertaining tale.

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