Sunday, October 11, 2009

Mary ... ANN!!

I'll admit it ... I'm a toe-dipper. There's no jumping off the high dive for me. When I want to try out a new or seldomly read genre, I'm going to do it in the least risky way. This time it was the graphic novel Wonderland, written by Tommy Kovac and drawn by Sonny Liew and compiled from six individually released comics. I am a huge fan of Alice in Wonderland and this comic, based on both the Disney film and the original story, seemed like an easy way to explore a medium of story-telling that I rarely visit.

This is the story of Mary Ann ... yes, *the* Mary Ann ... maid in the household of the White Rabbit. She returns after Alice's visit to Wonderland and becomes enmeshed in the mess that Alice has left behind. Fans of the film will love the use of the Disney-imagined characters (like the fuchsia and lavender Cheshire cat and the flag-capped Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dum) and also the little unrelated homages to the film (like the "little oysters" traveling across the beach). Fans of the original story will appreciate the use of the full "'Twas brillig" poem and the subsequent appearance of the Jabberwocky.

It takes me a little while to get used to the verbal simplicity of a graphic novel and to look away from the words and appreciate the other elements of the story that are shown visually. I think that this one warrants a second read-through to absorb things that I missed the first time through. I enjoyed reading this one!

Admitting that one of my favorite words has always been "outgrabe",

Support our site and buy Wonderland on Amazon or find it at your local library. We borrowed this one from the library.


  1. I didn't realize you were a fellow Carrollian. :)

    When you feel like moving toward the deeper end, try Alice in Sunderland - it's quite the overwhelming graphic novel but I thought it was worth it.

  2. I have not yet read many graphic novels, but those I have I have enjoyed! I'm going to add this one to my list! It sounds "wonder"ful!! :)

  3. I like graphic novels, but haven't read many. But I have loved what I've read.

  4. I think the problem for graphic novels for me is that I just look at the pretty pictures and then sort of ignore the fact that a plot might be involved :-) This one looks so adorable, though. It reminds me of the Strawberry Shortcake sort of illustrations...

  5. Saveophelia - I've heard of Alice in Sunderland but wasn't sure about reading it. I promise to take the chance though!

    Tif - This is a very gentle one. It's published by Disney. :)

    J.T. - I think this is only my fifth or sixth but I definitely want to try more that have subjects I enjoy.

    Aarti - And I'm the opposite -- I forget to look at the pictures! ;)

  6. I'm a toedipper too ... I still haven't read "The Imposter's Daughter" -- my first attempt at a graphic novel.

  7. Jenners - I have that one on my library list. It looks really good!