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Review–Alice in Zombieland (White Rabbit Chronicles #1) by Gena Showalter

By Megan Love Literature Art & Reason @meganm922
11300302   Alice in Zombieland (White Rabbit Chronicles #1)   by Gena Showalter   Summary: She won’t rest until she’s sent every walking corpse back to its grave. Forever.
Had anyone told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that’s all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.
Her father was right. The monsters are real….
To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn’t careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies….
I wish I could go back and do a thousand things differently.
I'd tell my sister no.
I'd never beg my mother to talk to my dad.
I'd zip my lips and swallow those hateful words.
Or, barring all of that, I'd hug my sister, my mom and my dad one last time.
I'd tell them I love them.
I wish... Yeah, I wish.
  Release Date: Sept 25, 2012
Genre: YA Zombie Horror Fantasy
Where to Buy: Amazon . Barnes and Noble . HarlequinTeen
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Source: I purchased a paperback from Harlequin Teen

I have been on the fence about this book for a long time. I finally decided to purchase a copy once I saw a good price. Immediately after it arrived, I kept hearing nothing but negative things about it and I started to regret my purchase. Figuring the only way to know for sure was to read it, I decided to just read it as soon as I could. I am also not a huge fan of Alice in Wonderland, so I was worried about that, too. But I’m SO glad I read it because I absolutely loved Alice in Zombieland.
The premise of Alice in Zombieland was incredible. I loved the idea of having a zombie story without it feeling like the same old zombie apocalypse story. I love zombie apocalypses, don’t get me wrong, but the zombie origin in this book was refreshing and unique. I also loved the idea that their existence wasn’t something everyone was familiar with. Still, it spoke to the zombie lover in me because they were still terrifying beings and somewhat gross. The book was both beautiful and horrifying at the same time, which I enjoyed.
The characters in the book were awesome. I loved Ali. Her narration sounded really teenager at times (most of the time), but in a refreshing way that had me laughing or smirking. I liked her attitude and her worldview. I loved Kat, her best friend, and their entire relationship. I just love how even though everything got crazy, they were both so nonchalant, funny, and so… carefree. Ali’s retorts made me laugh and want to root for her. I’m so used to YA heroines being overly dramatic, tough to a fault, or completely weak and defenseless. Ali was a little immature, a lot mature, strong, full of attitude and grit, but also weak and confused. She was everything. Cole was… perfect. Tough, dark, mysterious, but also funny, sarcastic, and sweet. Seriously. Perfect.
I also enjoyed the relationship between Ali and Cole. Everything between them was so intense, but it wasn’t intense like most romances. Ali was everything I loved in a character and their romance was everything I love in a romance. It was intense, sweet, distracting, but also not the main focus. The characters weren’t always focused on each other and actually worked well as a team and managed to keep their hands off each other until they had a moment. When I comes to balance, Alice in Zombieland really won me over because it was funny and serious, romantic and action packed, horrific and light.. all at the same time.
In a world where zombies were the stuff of nightmares and the regular population had no knowledge of their existence, the characters who did know about them had to come up with valid reasons as to why they weren’t around, beat up, or sick. It may sound like a minor thing, but I had so much respect for this book for having alibis. It gets incredibly old and annoying for characters to go off on fantastic adventures while no one seems to notice. I liked how the characters in Alice in Zombieland had to come up with excuses, attempt to maintain some level of normalcy, and cover up their bruises. There wasn’t some amazing magical way to cover up battle scars and time lapses. It creates a whole conflict dynamic and I can appreciate any book that deals with it! Honestly, before I knew what was happening (because I totally don’t read book summaries most of the time before I start a book and I always forget the plot), I thought everyone was involved in some fight club!
I’m not sure why there are so many mixed reviews for this book. I loved it. I admit, I’m not a huge fan of Alice in Wonderland. I don’t hate the story, I’m just not nuts about it and wouldn’t actively seek out any fairytale retellings. I think I liked this book so much because it wasn’t really a retelling at all. There were very few parallels with Alice in Wonderland, actually. And perhaps that’s why so many people didn’t like it, if that’s what they were expecting. There seems to be an actual zombie Alice in Wonderland retelling that exists by the same title, though, so perhaps anyone who is honestly going for that sort of thing can try that Alice in Zombieland. The reviews look a bit more promising for those expectations.
**NOTE** At the beginning of the novel, after a few thing happened, Ali started going to a new school. Her and Cole had immediate connections, although he seemed pretty aggravated at it while he stared daggers at her. I will always love this sort of beginning tension, especially when it’s done well, but it I know it’s not the most original. If the first thing you’ve ever read with this sort of boy-looks-like-he-hates-girl, staring-across-a-lunch-room thing was Twilight, you might think either “ugh, ripoff!” or “oh, god, not this crap.” And to both reactions, I’d say to keep reading. That’s where any and all similarities end….
...And for the record, noticing these kinds of microscopic similarities with Twilight and dismissing an entire novel, especially one that started off so vastly different and actually is entirely different, is ridiculous. It’s really aggravating that people throw their hands up and go OH NO! over stuff like that. KEEP READING! =) /endrant
I highly recommend Alice in Zombieland. It’s a fun, action packed, humorous, and romantic novel. I cannot wait to start on the sequel!

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