From School Library Journal
Grade 6 Up-This story of Alice Liddell and her relationship with Charles Dodgson (Lewis Carroll) and his masterpiece is a busy book. It contains a fictionalized account of how Alice in Wonderland came to be; historical information on childhood life in Victorian England; puzzles and games invented by Dodgson; family trees for Alice, Dodgson, and Queen Victoria; a bibliography; and a walking tour of Oxford. The tone and style of the writing, apparently meant to mimic the literary Alice, give the narrator a distinct voice that is sometimes pleasant and sometimes irritatingly smug. Thus, the book lacks focus. The illustrations are flat and insipid, particularly in contrast to the many photographs throughout the story, most taken by Dodgson. The author is a devotee of Alice in Wonderland and has created a work that will appeal to others with the same passion. It is doubtful that the majority of those readers will be children.Patricia A. Dollisch, DeKalb County Public Library, Decatur,
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
The author of Linnea in Monet's Garden (1987) explores the connection between Alice Liddell, the book Alice, and its creator in an inviting array of anecdotes, biographical details, descriptions of the Oxford setting, photos (many by Dodgson, still renowned as a photographer of children), period illustrations, and Eriksson's precisely detailed art. Bjrk introduces this wealth of material with an engaging account (lively with ``conversation'') of Alice's first telling on a river picnic. The bulk of the book details the peculiar ups and downs of the friendship between the child and the confirmed bachelor (whose best friends were always little girls, although there's no hint that these ties were anything but deliciously whimsical and rather cerebral), the two of whom apparently lost interest in each other as she got older (Mrs. Liddell would also, periodically and inexplicably, try to terminate a friendship that would then be reinstated with full honor). Meanwhile, much of the pair's playful interaction (especially concerning logic and numbers) was incorporated into Alice. The author wraps up her account with what happened later to the people, the books, and Oxford itself. Eriksson's profuse, exquisite illustrations are as carefully researched as the text. An entrancing portrait of the genesis of a classic, of a unique friendship, and of Victorian Oxford. Addenda include a map, family lists, puzzle solutions, ``Societies for Alice and Carroll Friends,'' and bibliographies of Dodgson's books and the author's sources. Charming. (Nonfiction. 7+) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.