Whatever After: Abby in Wonderland
By Sarah Mlynowski
Hi! Have you ever traveled between fairy tale worlds? Well, a girl in this book has. Her name is Abby. She usually travels with her brother, Jonah, and her dog, Prince. This isn’t the only book in this series. There are many more. In fact, this one is a “Special Edition.”
In this book, Abby and her friends travel into a book called… wait, more about that later. It begins when Abby is in her car. She’s driving to Penny’s house. Penny is Abby's best friend's friend. She can’t quite say that she’s friends with Penny yet, because she isn’t. She feels that she stole Robin from her. Her two best friends are Robin and Frankie. She really wishes that she had gone to either of their houses. But she didn’t – instead she went to Penny’s. When she got there, they played “Crazy Eights.” But, when Abby finally got a Queen of Hearts, the wind blew it away. All of a sudden, a hole appeared in Penny’s golf course (Penny lives in a mansion. She’s very rich and keeps bragging about herself all of the time. I wouldn’t really go for Penny, either.)
First, Frankie fell into the hole trying to get the card. But she caught on just before she fell very deeply in. They tried to hoist her up, but she fell. Robin jumped in after her. Abby tried to go in but Penny wouldn’t let her because she’d be the one in trouble if Abby disappeared. So, instead Abby just pulled her in, too. They fell down the hole. Soon enough, they landed with a great thump at the bottom. Frankie was gone. They saw a lot of doors. They tried to open a lot of them. None of them had any luck. Soon, Robin saw a bottle labeled “drink me.” They had a little bit of discussion, but eventually, she drank it. Abby drank it after her, but then Penny had a little bit more hesitation, but she eventually gave in.
All of a sudden, they realized what book they were in – Alice in Wonderland! That’s when Abby saw the secret garden. When she went in there, she saw roses everywhere. Some were red and some were white. Then she saw a bucket of red paint. “How silly,” she said to herself. “They are painting the roses.” Then, they met a rabbit along the way. “Just like the rabbit from the movie!” Robin said. (Robin had only seen the move, but Penny had read the book.) As soon as they got over there and started eating the tarts, she said that she hadn’t read the whole book- she skipped a lot. The card soldiers said that the girls were eating the Queen’s tarts. The girls said that the rabbit had told them to, but they didn’t know that they were the Queen’s tarts. The cards didn’t believe them. The cards ran after the girls.
They tried to hide when, all of a sudden, they saw some ivy (not poison ivy, just ivy). When they were pretty sure the cards were gone, they got out of the ivy and walked away. Soon they found the Cheshire Cat. He said some pretty confusing things. The main thing they got was that they had to drink something. So they went around and tried a lot of things. They had some great adventures along the way.
Will they find Frankie and get back, or will they be stuck in this fairy tale forever? And what in the world happened to Frankie? As I always say, read the book to find out!
I recommend this book to readers who love a nice, simple story, where at the end of a lot of chapters, there is a cliff hanger that makes you eager to read the rest of the book.
A few helpful things I like to say about the books I read:
“Run and Get Mom” (how I describe the scariness factor): This book isn’t very scary. There were barely any scary parts at all. There are a few parts every now and then, but nothing I couldn’t handle.
“Yucky-Lovey Stuff” (how I describe the romance factor): Zero. None. Nada. No.
I give this book 5 wands.
I read it in about 3 hours. And, trust me, that is a short time. My favorite part is when they figured out that they were in Alice in Wonderland. I wanted them to figure it out really badly, but they just didn’t seem to get it until Penny told them that she had read the book before and it seemed just like the book.