First published in 1865
Source: bought for my daughter who loves the Disney movie
When Alice follows a white rabbit with a pocket watch into a hole, she finds herself in Wonderland, a land where she frequently finds herself growing and shrinking and meets one of the strangest assortment of characters ever to grace the pages of literature, including the Cheshire Cat, a hookah-smoking caterpillar, The Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts.
Not long after she arrives in Wonderland, Alice begins to think that she may no longer be who she thinks she is, what with the changing sizes, her memory lapses, and all of the strange things she's seeing. But she never really does lose herself, always retaining her common sense and feeling of fairness.
Of course the book is full of nonsense, which is much of what makes it so appealing to children. But it's full of the kinds of humor that equally amusing for adults. In one chapter, Alice and a group of animals have had to swim and are looking for something to dry themselves. A mouse ("a person of some authority") began to tell the group the "dryest" thing he knows, which turns out to be a story of early English political history. The Duchess is constantly trying to make a moral of everything. Great long passages are plays on how the English language can be misunderstood and misused.
"Alice's Adventures In Wonderland" was originally a story told by Charles Dodgson (a.k.a. Lewis Carroll) told to ten-year-old Alice Lidell and her sisters on a boat ride in 1862. Alice asked Dodgson to write the story down which he finally did three years later, complete with his own drawings. When the book was published, however, it included the drawing of John Tenniel.""Then you should say what you mean," the March Hare went on.
"I do," Alice hastily replied: "at least - at least I mean what I say - that's the same thing you know."
"Not the same thing a bit!" said the Hatter. "Why, you might just as well say that 'I see what I eat' is the same thing as 'I eat what I see!"
"You might just as well say," added the March Hare, "that 'I like what I get' is the same thing as 'I get what I like!""
I generally include what I didn't like or didn't think worked in a book when I do a review but I must admit that I can't think of a single thing I didn't enjoy in this story. I was enchanted by Carroll's clever writing and amusing characters and absolutely adored Tenniel's drawings. If you have not read this book, it can be had for free in several places on the internet. But if you have children, I highly recommend picking up a copy to read to them; it will be a book they will want to read again and again. No wonder my daughter loves this story so much! I can't wait to read "Through The Looking Glass And What Alice Found There," Carroll's follow up to "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland."