by Marissa Meyer
Amazon rating
Critique Circle rating 
PublisherFeiwel & Friends
Release Date2016-11-08 (added to CC 6 Oct 2016)
Amazon Sales Rank2,083

Long before she was the terror of Wonderland?the infamous Queen of Hearts?she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love.

Long before she was the terror of Wonderland, she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love. Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland, and a favorite of the unmarried King of Hearts, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, all she wants is to open a shop with her best friend. But according to her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for the young woman who could be the next queen.

Then Cath meets Jest, the handsome and mysterious court joker. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the king and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into an intense, secret courtship. Cath is determined to define her own destiny and fall in love on her terms. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.

In her first stand-alone teen novel, the New York Times-bestselling author dazzles us with a prequel to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Member Reviews
(20 Mar)
(15 Feb 2017)
The good:
Marissa Meyer did an amazing job of portraying a new Wonderland. Drawing from the British English Victorian era brought a new layer to the story, and introduced an entirely new feel to Wonderland. I think that the storyline was very well constructed, and the plot was really well put together. Everything had a place and a reason for happening, and it all tied together in the end, which was also fantastic just as it was devastating. The story was thoroughly enjoyable for me, and I must admit I became rather attached to the characters, which were well-developed. I loved that they all had a purpose in the story, I didn’t feel as though there were just random characters thrown in for the sake of it. In fact, I even cried when reading it, and trust me, it’s hard to get me to cry.
The bad:
I do think that Wonderland lacked a certain whimsy. Alice in Wonderland has always been one of my favorites, it’s nonsense bringing to the table a unique feeling that’s hard to find. Heartless needs more exposure to that. Also, some of the characters were truly a bit ridiculous. Having not read the original stories (I know, I know, shame on me; they’re drowning in the TBR pile) I can’t chalk anything up to being references, so I’m not going to start complaining just yet.
The ugly:
I hated that Cath did nothing. As I said earlier, I understand Marissa’s (possible) intentions, but I hated it. It drove me away from the character and made her less relatable. In some places, I was just plain frustrated with her. I think that there should’ve been more fight in Cath as a character, and the story honestly would’ve really benefitted from that. There are other ways to give Cath weaknesses or reasons to be unable to cope with grief, and Marissa should’ve utilized them. At the very least, a little more content on how she becomes the Queen of Hearts and how she translates the grief into anger would’ve cleared up a lot character-wise. Seeing as this is the main complaint upon readers, it also probably would have brought the story more praise as a whole.
Overall rating: 4.5/5
Other books on CC by the author

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