"Splintered" by A.G. Howard(Splintered #1)
Publication Date-February 18, 2014
Genre-Young Adult, Fantasy, Retellings, Romance
Paperback Edition-371 Pages
Rating-5/5 Lily Pads
"Now, you listen, Alyssa Victoria Gardner. Normal is subjective. Don't ever let anyone tell you you're not normal. Because you are to me. And my opinion is all that matters. Got it?"-Page 7
"A friend doesn't try to run your life. That's what Dad's are for."-Page 30
"Yet here I am, all of those things. Both light and dark, at the same time. If I were to give in to one side of me, would that mean I'd have to give up the other? My heart aches at the possibility. Somehow I feel like I need both to be complete."-Page 273
"It was to be so perfect!" Morpheus all but cries the words, concentrating solely on me. "Your mortal suitor has already forgotten this journey. But you and I, we share memories of a childhood that I will never forget. You are the lady of my heart. My match in every way. I would've stayed at your side once we banished Queen Red, never left you to rule alone. We could've danced every night in the stars above your kingdom. For you, I would've given up my solitary life...been your loyal footman and cherished you eternally."-Page 340
"I would give up all my powers to have you in my arms. Your love is the only magic I need."-Page 341
"I've always believed in your power. For the Queen I saw in you even as a child...for the woman you could never see in yourself. My faith is as unchanging as my age."-Page 344
"Things suck for you sometimes-I get it. But you can't use that as an excuse to treat people any way you want." My cheeks burn hot at the purging of emotions I've suppressed for too many years. "Tearing down the rest of the world won't make you happy. Look inside yourself. Because finding who you were meant to be? What you were put into this world to do? That's what fills the emptiness. It's the only thing that can".-Page 368
Hey guys. I am here to talk about the best book of 2017 so far and that is "Splintered" by A.G. Howard. This book was so amazing and incredible! It is the most unique book I've read in a long time. Let's get on with the review!
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.
First of all, I absolutely loved the plot of this book. As you can tell from the synopsis, this book is a retelling of "Alice in Wonderland". I love the original story and I've never read a retelling of it so I thought this book was so unique. The author took her own spin and made Wonderland her own but she also kept things from the original story too. I just loved the plot of this book. I love that Alyssa had to go to Wonderland and undo everything Alice did to break the curse in her family.
I'm not very observant when it comes to noticing author's writing styles. I can't tell you if their writing is amazing or not. But for A.G. Howard, her writing is something special. It really stood out to me. She just has a very unique way of writing. It's kind of hard to explain. She just has a way with words. The way she describes everything is so amazing. She's very vivid and her imagery is incredible. She described Wonderland so well it was really easy for me to picture everything, especially the characters. She's descriptive but not too much like other author's. I just love her style and can't wait to see her writing in her other books.
I had no issues with the pacing in this book. The first half was very interesting, I wasn't bored at all. I loved learning about Alyssa's mortal life. I liked learning about her family and her friends. The whole journey with her and Jeb going down the rabbit hole was so fun to read about. That was pretty much the first half of the book. Once you get to the second half, you learn more about Wonderland since she's there until the end of the book. The second half was amazing too, it was even better than the first half. I got to learn a lot and Morpheus was in it more so of course I liked that. There was also a lot action so I was satisfied. The pacing was perfect, that's why I gave it a perfect rating.
How can you not love the cover? I mean just look at it! It's so gorgeous and it describes the book pretty well. I love the covers for the other books too. My favorite one is probably "Unhinged" since it's purple which is my favorite color.
I loved the world so much! It was very dark and creepy but that made it cool to read about. I felt like I was watching the Alice films but with a more darker twist. I can't wait to go back into this amazing world that she created.
I wish I could give the characters more than five Lily Pads, they were so amazing! I love books that are character driven, they are the most important parts of books for me. I have to love the characters to enjoy the book and this book delivered it so well. First of all, let's talk about our main character Alyssa. I really liked her. She is a very likable character. She acts like a normal teenage girl and she's not really confident which I liked. She had her insecurities. She is a very nice girl with a good attitude in life. She was really trying to find herself in this book. Overall, I loved her and don't have too much to say about Alyssa.
I loved reading about her family. I loved her mom and dad. I loved her best friend Jenara. She's such a nice girl and I love that she's Jeb's sister. It makes me love her even more. She's a great friend to Alyssa. I wasn't a big fan of Taelor. I know she's not supposed to be a likable character but she wasn't really in the book enough for me to like her anyway.
Next, let's talk about Jeb. From the reviews I read, a lot of people hate him. I personally really loved him. He never got on my nerves. I think the reason I like him is because I always love the best guy friend and the good guy so I was immediately drawn to him. They've been friends for six years and their relationship was just cute. You can tell he really loves and cared about Alyssa. He sacrificed so much for her so she could live. A lot of people said he's overprotective. I agree with that but it didn't bother me, I like guys that are like that. He really wanted to protect her and help her, what's wrong with that? It shows that he's a good guy. I absolutely loved the romance between them. One of the reasons why I found this book so unique is because in YA books, usually the main character will be best friends with a guy for years and the guy is usually in love with her but she never likes him that way. I loved that Alyssa actually has feelings for Jeb. She wants more than friendship and she's crushed on him for years. I thought that was very unique, how often do you see that in YA books? Very rarely, especially in Fantasy novels. I'm also a huge fan of the friends to lovers trope so that's also why I loved their relationship.
This book does have a love triangle in it, and it's very hard for me because I love both guys. The second guy is Morpheus. He is like the complete opposite of Jeb. He's not really a good guy. He's very dark and mysterious and is very manipulative. You can't really trust him. I just found myself drawn to him. I love the bad, mysterious guys too. His personality is very different, I've never read a character like him before. You don't know if he's good or not. He does have a soft spot and he has good intentions but he will turn on your back at times. I really loved his relationship with Alyssa. They had a history, they were childhood friends. Their relationship is complicated because Morpheus obviously loves her, but she doesn't really feel the same way, maybe she likes him a little bit. She's also bitter towards him for reasons I'm not going to mention because I don't wanna spoil you. So she sort of has a love-hate relationship with Morpheus. She loves him because he was her childhood friend, but at the same time she doesn't like him because he sort of ruined her life. I loved their flirty, witty banter conversations. Even though Morpheus is a jerk, he is always very sweet to Alyssa and that's one of the reasons why I love him. I also like him because he really believes in her and encourages Alyssa to be her true self, the real her that wants to come out.
So as for the love triangle, I'm rooting for both guys. I love Alyssa and Jeb together, they make a great couple. But I also love her and Morpheus, they have a lot in common and he understands her more than Jeb does. I don't know, I think I'm leaning more towards her and Morpheus. In the first half of the book I was team Jeb all the way but after I finished the book, I sort of changed to team Morpheus. I love them both so it's hard! I'm so curious to see who she ends up with. I'm pretty sure I know who she picks but I could be wrong so I'll have to just wait and see. It takes talent for an author to make you love both guys just like with Ash and Puck from the "Iron Fey" series and Will and Jem from the "Infernal Devices". Overall, the characters were very well developed so I had to give them a perfect rating. They are the reason why I loved this book so much.
Lastly, let's talk about the enjoyment level of this book. I had so much fun reading this book. It's been on my TBR for years so I'm so glad I finally read it! This book was just a really fun quick read. When I wasn't reading "Splintered" I couldn't stop thinking about it and I had a hard time putting it down. So obviously I enjoyed this book very much :)
Since I gave all the categories a five, the overall rating of "Splintered" is 5/5 Lily Pads. I loved this book so much! It's one of the best books I've read in a long time. It's my favorite book of 2017 so far but I think ACOWAR will definitely beat it. I just wanna finish this review so I can go on and read the novella "The Moth in the Mirror" next. After that I'm planning on diving into the second book "Unhinged". If you love fairy tale retellings and Alice in Wonderland, definitely read this book. I highly recommend it. Also if your looking for a really unique book to read, please read this book. This series is underrated and needs more love. These books are definitely worth a buy and I will have a review up for "Unhinged" soon so stay tuned for it. Thank you so much for reading this very long review. Have a great day and happy reading!:)