And For the Alice Aficionados
From Oz we go to Wonderland, in a welcome change of pace. Now it's hard not to like Alice In Wonderland. Good old Alice. Long ago I read an article that pointed out that unlike Dorothy, her Yankee equivalent, Alice never whines in perpetuity about wanting to go home. Nope. Alice is sensible to her core, but she's also perfectly content to explore her surroundings before going back to dry dull reality.
So here's the skinny. There's to be a graphic novel of the "real" Alice coming out by Brian Talbot entitled Alice In Sunderland. Mr. Talbot is the fellow who brought you YA librarians A Tale of One Bad Rat. Those of you familiar with that book will be particularly confused by this radical change of pace. Some of you will also give a small cry of protest and say that the "real" Alice idea was already examined, in graphic novel and novel novel form, in this year's lamentable Looking Glass Wars. Consider Talbot's book the classy alternative, then. Here's how he describes his book in an interview with Publisher's Weekly:
Alice in Sunderland is a 320-page graphic novel with the themes of storytelling, history and myth in a form I've been describing as a "dream documentary." It is not one story but literally dozens, short and long, the central spines being the history of Sunderland and the story of Lewis Carroll and Alice Liddell (the "real" Alice), both of whom had connections with the city and surrounding area.This article in PW contains the whole of this interview and shows shots of the book that take the old breath away. It's being released by Dark Horse, but libraries should keep a keen eye out for it next year. Hopes are high.
The stories are told within the structure of an imaginary performance on the stage of the Sunderland Empire Theater, the shorter ones interwoven within the two main threads and consistently underpinned by the stage setting. As the Empire is an Edwardian music hall, the work is a "variety performance" in that different visual styles are utilized for each story, according to its needs.