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Wonderland

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3.14  ·  Rating details ·  2,215 ratings  ·  555 reviews
If Shirley Jackson wrote The Shining, it might look like this deliciously unsettling horror novel from the acclaimed author of Baby Teeth.

A mother must protect her family from the unnatural forces threatening their new and improved life in a rural farmhouse.

The Bennett family - artist parents and two precocious children - are leaving their familiar urban surroundings for a
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Hardcover, 354 pages
Published July 14th 2020 by Mulholland Books
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Average rating 3.14  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,215 ratings  ·  555 reviews


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Kat
Sep 09, 2020 rated it it was ok
the scariest thing about this book was that they thought it was accurate to market it as "if shirley jackson wrote the shining"
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Lori
Mar 19, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: reviewed
There's a sentence about halfway through Wonderland where the mother thinks if they could only get away safely she'd let her son Tycho sing "The Wheels On the Bus Go Round and Round," a song they'd always discouraged him from singing because of its "annoying repetition." This was my favorite sentence in the book because it's so ironic it made me laugh out loud. I had high hopes for this horror novel because people I trust love Baby Teeth, but I think I would have preferred reading 350+ pages of ...more
megs_bookrack
Oct 03, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: arcs-read
Upon her retirement from a New York City ballet company, Orla is ready to take over the care of her two oddly-named children, Eleanor Queen and Tycho.

Her artist husband, Shaw, really needs a chance to focus on his work.



Up to this point, Shaw has been the main caregiver for the children, as Orla's career required long hours outside of the home.

A sacrifice he was more than willing to make, but now they agree it's his time.



The couple decide to move to Northern New York, a remote area close to whe
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Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell

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Zoje Stage seems to be taking things that most people like and find wholesome and turning them into objects of horror. Children? Check. Nature? Check. What's next... bake sales? Dogs? Sunsets? Whatever she picks, I'm sure I'll find it totally validating, because this book reminded me why I hate camping and hiking so much. Nature can be creepy. I don't think I've ever been so freaked out by trees since I read UPROOTED by Naomi Novik.



This
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Jasmine from How Useful It Is
I always plow into a story without knowing anything about it but because I have read this author's debut, I have a certain expectation and this story is different. Definitely interesting about small space living versus big space living. Orla's family used to live in NY in their cramped apartment where they are always in each other's face. Now they are living in the country in a big farmhouse with the kids sleeping in separate rooms, she worries that her family will grow apart. I like Orla's hear ...more
Gabby
This book had the audacity to compare itself to the masterpiece that is The Shining.

Here’s the vlog where I read this one: https://youtu.be/u0vZfAfq6EQ
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Michelle
Jan 13, 2020 marked it as to-read
I will murder someone for a copy of this arc.

I'm kidding.

Or am I??? 😈
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Nilufer Ozmekik
Jul 31, 2020 rated it liked it
Hooray! Another semi-unpopular review is on its way! When I read the definition of the book: if Shirley Jackson wrote Shining, it might look like this: I chant: “Yes! Yes! Yes!”and after getting rejections from NG, I still kept my composure ( I didn’t throw anything or jumped on coffee table and cried as I asked myself “why, why, why the publishers hate me so much!”I am not a drama queen, right? Okay, I jumped on coffee table but after ugly crying session later, I performed tap dance. See! I can ...more
Bridgett
Jul 26, 2020 rated it it was ok
Well, that was a huge struggle.

Okay, friends, I'm just going to go there...no beating around the bush.

This story was dull in every imaginable way. I actually contemplated not finishing it--something I rarely do, but holy crap, the repetition. I would read five percent on my Kindle...then give myself a pep talk to read five more. It was tedious.

I will say this...the prose was lovely and Zoje Stage absolutely nailed the setting. I felt as though I was personally living in this old, rundown
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Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Jun 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Sometimes you step out and read something a little different than your norm...

Did you read Baby Teeth, Zoje’s Stage’s last book? I did not. Too chicken. Do you ever read thrillers with just a touch of horror? I don’t usually, thinking horror is not my thing. Some are even calling Wonderland a dark fantasy, and I get it. While not a typical horror or fantasy reader, I recently read The Ancestor and loved it, so I wanted to give Wonderland a try, and I was not disappointed.

The Bennett family moves
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Matthew
After enjoying Stage’s Baby Teeth, I had high hopes for this one. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy it quite as much. In fact, at one point in the book I was pretty sure it was going to be a 2-star review. But, the ending ended up redeeming it somewhat and I was not unsatisfied that I read it.

My biggest issue with the first 2/3 of the book was that it was drawn out and repetitive. Have you ever read a book where it felt like all the meat was in the last 50 pages or so and the buildup only had about
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Frank Phillips
Aug 04, 2020 rated it it was ok
This was probably the DUMBEST plot I've ever read. I'm actually proud of myself for even finishing this book, which was over 350 pages. A family moves out to the country to escape the hustle & bustle of city lives, wife is a retired ballerina and husband is an aspiring artist, who is now the breadwinner for the family. At first the remoteness of the house, out in a heavily wooded rural area and an impending winter storm had me incredibly creeped out and in suspense, expecting all hell to break l ...more
Zoje Stage
Jun 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
For anyone who may have missed the updates: Due to the pandemic WONDERLAND's release date has been pushed back to July 14, 2020. We apologize for making you wait, but the decision was made to allow us all to get better adjusted to living in a world with Covid 19. Stay well! And happy reading! ...more
Christina
Jul 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is an utterly bizarre and lyrical and sometimes downright beautiful book that defies comparison to anything else I have read. While it’s clear it takes inspiration from The Shining, it’s nothing like The Shining and is much more feminine in tone (hence perhaps the Shirley Jackson comparisons, but it’s not like her voice either to me).

I LOVED Baby Teeth and was beyond excited for this book, but let me say it is entirely different from Baby Teeth. This book has a really intense and unique sen
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Dennis
Mar 03, 2020 marked it as dnf
Got up to 100 pages and couldn’t push through anymore. Between the slow pacing and the ridiculous names of the characters being taken seriously, I’m done. Hopefully someone can tell me if it ends nicely!
Janelle Janson
Review to come but let me just say it’s nothing like Shirley Jackson’s work or The Shining.
Kitten Kisser
Feb 11, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: worst-books-ever
While I didn't expect this to be her first novel 'Baby Teeth' I did expect to at least like it (hoped I'd love it like I loved Baby Teeth). Maybe it wasn't creepy to me because I live in a cabin in the middle of nowhere? Maybe it wasn't creepy because I'm used to living back to the land with satellite for internet? Maybe it wasn't creepy because it was boring. Yeah, I think that's it. Oh wait, let's not forget repetitive. Should I repeat that last sentence perhaps in a slightly different way for ...more
Laura Rash
Jan 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Creepy AF! The description of “Shirley Jackson meets The Shining” is completely accurate. All the vibes of both are in this book and it evolves into something even scarier. Many thanks to the author for this early copy for review
Alma Katsu
Mar 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Wonderland shows the terror lurking below the surface of domestic bliss, when we realize our familiar and cozy world may not be as it seems. Zoje Stage is one of the few writers who can make the supernatural feel totally, dangerously real.
Erin A. Craig
Jun 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
What a stunning sophomore book! Stage masterfully takes the reader through this chilling tale, hitting you hard in the gut as the dread and tension rises ever higher. I was nauseous, fearful, and loved every minute of it.
Amanda McHugh
May 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Baby Teeth is one of the first books I picked up after I joined the horror and #writingcommunity on Twitter, and I've been a big fan of Stage since. So when I saw Wonderland available on NetGalley, I immediately requested it and was thrilled to be approved. I mean, look at that cover. Striking. I couldn't wait to dive in.

After retiring from a lifelong ballet career, Orla and her family move to a remote house in the Adirondacks so her husband, Shaw, can pursue his artistic ambitions and their ch
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Ananya Rubayat
Aug 06, 2020 rated it did not like it
This reminded me of Stephen Chobsky's Imaginary Friend - another long winded boring as hell book involving a tree drawing in kids (still a better read than this). Towards the end I amused myself by counting how many times the author mentions her daughter by full name 'Eleanor Queen'. I doubt if I have written my own name as many times in the past five years. What a snoozefest. ...more
Elle's Book Blog
Release Date: July 14, 2020
Actual Rating: 2 stars

Horror | Supernatural

Unfortunately, this book wasn’t for me. I enjoyed Baby Teeth last year and was really excited to read this one, but it veered too far from the norm for me and I found much of it to be a little to whacky. I liked the first half of the book; getting to know the family, watching them move out of the city and into the country (wholly different from what they are used to) and some of the creepy things that begin to occur. How
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D.M. Pulley
Feb 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Hauntingly beautiful and scary as hell, Wonderland takes you deep into the woods of one woman’s mind and her harrowing struggle to save her children.
Krista Regester
Sep 24, 2020 rated it liked it
You may have heard me yelling in frustration a few times during this reading, but not to worry I have finished. I love all things horror (obvs) but I definitely struggled to find my usual spooky loving joy with Wonderland. So many of the decisions that are made by the Bennett family are bad and just as unlikely. The writing style is not my fave, but the cover art is dope.
Audra (ouija.reads)
“If Shirley Jackson wrote The Shining” is certainly a way to pique my interest about a book since I love both of those things. But that means my expectations are high, and this book could not land farther from that claim.

I suppose you could say it is like The Shining in the sense that all books set in a wintry landscape are like The Shining. But that doesn’t make up for the lack of tension, interesting family dynamics, and just plain great writing and storytelling of King’s book. I don’t see th
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Jessica Woodbury
Jul 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. For some of us, it's a great time to read a horror novel. It's weirdly comforting to have terrible things that you can contain and access however you choose. But everyone has their "Too Real" and if a book where portions of it involve a family unable to leave their house with their young children, well, maybe leave this one for when that isn't too close to your life. (Also if a book where children are under threat is too much for you, this is a no go.)

About a third of the way through
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Caidyn (he/him/his)
I received an ARC through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review!

DNF 36%

I wasn't into this one. It started off very interesting, then... nothing happened. Nothing happened at all. I kept waiting and waiting. I didn't want to pick it up and found myself dreading to because I knew that I should push just a bit more. But, far too much of a slow-burn for me. I wasn't interested in whatever spooky thing was going on.
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Lauren Stoolfire
Jul 02, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: horror
I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I was sold on Wonderland by Zoje Stage novel when I saw it described as The Haunting of Hill House meets The Shining. Unfortunately, I wouldn't describe this as being like either of those two classics at all. In the end I liked the concept of this horror story, but not so much the actual execution. One day, I would still like to try Baby Teeth after hearing so many great things about it.
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Taylor
May 19, 2020 marked it as to-read
If Shirley Jackson wrote The Shining...I'll gladly sign my soul away for this book, thanks.

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The ending of this book (I need to know...spoiler!) 2 25 Aug 06, 2020 12:08PM  

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1,388 followers
Zoje Stage is the USA Today and internationally bestselling author of BABY TEETH ("a mesmerizing thriller" -Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) and WONDERLAND ("mind-bending" -the New York Times). Her third novel, GETAWAY ("a terrifying thriller" -Entertainment Weekly), will be published in August 2021. She lives in Pittsburgh. ...more

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“She doubted then her own ability to carry on if anything happened to her heart—and that’s what her daughter became the moment she was born, Orla’s heart, on the outside of her body.” 0 likes
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