cover image Alice in Wonderland: Down the Rabbit Hole

Alice in Wonderland: Down the Rabbit Hole

Lewis Carroll, retold by Joe Rhatigan and Charles Nurnberg, illus. by Eric Puybaret. Charlesbridge/Imagine!, $17.95 (28p) ISBN 978-1-62354-049-4

Puybaret brings a playful sophistication to his dreamlike images, which are well matched to the unpredictable atmosphere of Carroll’s classic fantasy. However, this adaptation only sets out to tell the first part of Alice’s story, focusing on her helter-skelter pursuit of the White Rabbit and her fluctuating size as she samples Wonderland’s drinks, cakes, and mushrooms. The illustrator’s inventive use of perspective makes the most of these transformations (readers peer down at Alice from above as she shrinks, for example), but Alice’s literal highs and lows don’t add up to much of a story. Puybaret includes a cameo from the Cheshire Cat and an allusion to the Mad Hatter’s tea party, but these and others are left to (possible) later books. A visually enticing story, albeit one that doesn’t stand on its own. All ages. (Feb.)