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Author: James Knapp
Publisher: Curtis Brown Unlimited
Publication Date: 05/13/2015
Synopsis from Goodreads: When her escape pod falls to earth, crashing in Ypsilanti Bloc, privileged seventeen-year-old Alice Walshe is dashed from the wonderland of wealth and prosperity into a ruined, walled city overrun with militias, gangs, and even cannibals. On top of this horror, her younger brother’s escape pod is missing.
Alice isn’t naïve – she’s always known blocs like Ypsilanti exist, left behind after a foodborne illness ravished the country decades earlier and left pockets of severe urban decay in its wake. Men like her father – a major player at Cerulean Holdings – renew the devastated blocs and bring stability back into the areas. But, Ypsilanti is even worse than the tales she’s heard, and rumor has it the bloc is faced with the threat of extermination by Cerulean, not renewal.
Trapped within Ypsilanti’s borders and left for dead, Alice teams up with a pair of teen scavengers who tracked the wreck of her pod. Despite their rough exterior and vulgar speech, they’re her only option for navigating the hostile and violent environment of Ypsilanti, finding her brother, and getting out of No-Man’s-Land alive.
A modern-day, dystopian take on Alice in Wonderland, Alice in No-Man’s-Land captured my interest immediately. While the only true harbingers of Alice in Wonderland are Alice’s name and the White Rabbit OS, Cerulean Holdings makes for a convincing ideal of the Queen of Hearts.
Character development was a good mix of giving enough and not giving enough info. Characters who played bigger roles were better developed than more minor characters who weren’t part of the story for very long, although I do wish there had been a bit more background for Basilio and Maya since they played such major roles in the story.
I loved the more realistic dystopian world created by Mr. Knapp. It seemed far more plausible than some I’ve read. He even tied the devastating illness that caused this new dystopian society to Mad Cow Disease, which made it even more realistic. I do want to know what UAC stands for fully as it would seem it is America. I’m also curious as to what “state” New Windsor City would be in.
There was only one thing that disappointed me about Alice in No-Man’s-Land and that was the lack of a sequel. When you read the ending, you’ll understand what I mean.
All in all, a 5 star reading experience and one I’d gladly repeat.
I received a copy of this book free from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed here are 100% my own.