Sunday, October 9, 2016

Queen of Hearts by Colleen Oakes

I didn't even notice that the actual cover under the dust jacket was super awesome, too, until today! I got this book back in May!

Book Summary
As Princess of Wonderland Palace and the future Queen of Hearts, Dinah’s days are an endless monotony of tea, tarts, and a stream of vicious humiliations at the hands of her father, the King of Hearts. The only highlight of her days is visiting Wardley, her childhood best friend, the future Knave of Hearts — and the love of her life.

When an enchanting stranger arrives at the Palace, Dinah watches as everything she’s ever wanted threatens to crumble. As her coronation date approaches, a series of suspicious and bloody events suggests that something sinister stirs in the whimsical halls of Wonderland. It’s up to Dinah to unravel the mysteries that lurk both inside and under the Palace before she loses her own head to a clever and faceless foe.

Part epic fantasy, part twisted fairy tale, this dazzling saga will have readers shivering as Dinahs furious nature sweeps Wonderland up in the maelstrom of her wrath. 

Familiar characters such as Cheshire, the White Rabbit, and the Mad Hatter make their appearance, enchanting readers with this new, dark take on Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

Flo's Review
Having just finished Heartless by Marissa Meyer and wanting to stay in Wonderland, I finally reached for Queen of Hearts. This book has been on my TBR since I met the author Colleen Oakes at BookCon in May. It is the story of the Queen of Hearts before she became the brutal "Off with his head!!" lady that we know from Alice in Wonderland
Me with author Colleen Oakes at BookCon in May 2016
This was an interesting story. My favorite part was definitely the world building. It was really cool to see how Colleen translated some of the characters we are familiar with, like Cheshire, Harris (the White Rabbit), and the Mad Hatter. The different Cards held different positions in the government, so the Diamond Cards has specific roles, the Spades had a role, and so forth. And it was fascinating to read about Wonderland: the physical geography of it and the different areas. 

I didn't really like Dinah, and my reading style is usually that I have to like the main character (or somebody significant) to be invested in the story. But Dinah made sense. Knowing what she is going to become, it makes sense that she is already unlikable, and I do see how she grew up made her the way she is. I was also a little thrown with the passage of time in this story. I'd finish a chapter and then start a new one and it would like, (I'm paraphrasing) "So everything that just happened took place 6 months ago and now Dinah is..." Every time, I was like, "Wait. What?" Maybe because there were several time leaps like that and they were so understated? I'm not sure. It's not a negative or a positive, just an observation. 

Look at the chapter headers! The Q with the blood drip is on point. This is one the prettiest books I've seen in awhile.
I am curious to see how things go down in Book 2. Without giving anything away from this one, I'm curious about Cheshire -- there is some shade going on with him. Same with the Duchess. What's her story?

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