By Kelly Bridgewater
Step through the looking glass. Slay the Jabberwock. Seek the
Alice is not prepared to face what awaits beyond the Tulgey Wood. When she and the rest of Team Heart enter the fourth and final Wonderland Trial, it’s up to her to lead them to victory. But this Trial is more than a game. If Alice and the others fail to defeat the Jabberwock and reveal the truth about Wonderland, more than points and fame will be lost.
Chess Shire never believed he’d make it this far. Now he’s stuck navigating a Trial he’s seen but doesn’t remember, all while searching for the brother he left behind. Not everything is as black and white as the game that shares his name. And if Alice discovers his deepest regret? Chess might just lose her too.
Apart, Chess and Alice scour the eight squares of the Heart Trial in search of memories, truth, and an Ivory King who seems more illusion than reality. Will they learn to lead together to face their greatest fears? Or will they remain pawns in a queen’s game, never truly seeing the Wonderland they’ve come to believe in?
The Looking Glass Illusion by Sara Ella needs to be read right in a row with The Wonderland Trials. Since both books are now out, this can be done. I’m always amazed at fantasy writers. When they craft a story, they have to make the setting relatable, but quirky enough that the readers wants to stay invested in the setting. Ella did a fabulous job at this. I wanted to visit Wonderland. I have always wanted to visit London, so it was nice to see both realities kind of coincide with each other. I love how descriptive she was with the setting. Odd things happen, which is what readers come to expect when they read an Alice in Wonderland type story. As for the heroine, Alice, Ace, or A, depends on who is talking about the character, she is strong, and determined. With The Looking Glass Illusion, readers are given more of the history of Alice’s past and Wonderland’s past. Nicely done. The plot kept my attention, and I could not wait to see how they would actually defeat the Heart Trial. The romance between Chase and Alice I could totally believe since they were young, and it was easy to fall for the “bad” guy in the Normal world. If fans really love reading Alice in Wonderland type stories, I also recommend Tabitha Bouldin’s Madness in Wonderland and Lost In Wonderland. Wonderful stories too. Also, how about the covers on Ella’s stories. BEAUTIFUL. I can’t wait to own hardback copies of these books and put them on my shelf. They are wonderfully done. Overall, The Looking Glass Illusion by Sara Ella is a wonderful fantasy story that I know I will want to come back and read again later. Highly recommend.
I received a complimentary copy of The Looking Glass Illusion by Sara Ella from Enclave Publishing through Celebrate Lit Tours, but the opinions stated are all my own.
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Purchase The Looking Glass Illusion
About the Author
Once upon a time, Sara Ella dreamed she would marry a prince and live in a castle. Now she spends her days homeschooling her three Jedi in training, braving the Arizona summers, and reminding her superhero husband that it’s almost Christmas (even if it’s only January). Sara is the author of the Unblemished trilogy and Coral, a reimagining of The Little Mermaid that focuses on mental health. Her latest journey into the world of The Wonderland Trials feels like coming full circle after working for Disney. Sara loves fairy tales and Jesus, and she believes “Happily Ever After is Never Far Away.”
More from Sara
“Step through the looking glass. Slay the Jabberwock. Seek the King.”
It’s my tagline for The Looking-Glass Illusion, but in truth, I had no idea what those words truly meant until I wrote the ending (and rewrote it several times).
I didn’t fully understand what the looking glass did or did not do—only that Alice had to step through it.
I didn’t know who or what the Jabberwock really was—only that Team Heart had to overcome it.
And I really couldn’t quite figure out this Ivory King character I had introduced in The Wonderland Trials—only that he was real, and that, somehow, the King would reveal himself in the end.
This is my process and it’s rather frustrating not to know what you’re up against. I wish I could outline and have all the answers ahead of time. I wish I knew every intricate detail about my stories. It would certainly make the writing life a lot easier. But I like to think the not-knowing part is God’s way of keeping me humble in all of this. Because I only discover the story and the true underlying theme of it all when He decides to reveal it to me.
So, in the name of revealing things, here are three truths God showed me through the process of writing The Looking-Glass Illusion.
I think we can all remember the quote from The Santa Clause with Tim Allen that goes, “Seeing isn’t believing, believing is seeing.” It encompasses the idea that we don’t have to see in order to believe. And while I believe this is true, I also think if we say our faith is blind, we’ve missed the mark.
God gives us every tool we need to base our faith on the truth in the Bible. He doesn’t ask us to walk blindly. He’s given us sight in His Word! And while we don’t know or see everything yet, we do have concrete evidence to stand on that what the Bible says is real.
In The Looking-Glass Illusion, Alice steps through the looking glass not knowing what awaits her on the other side. She does know, however, that The Adventurer’s Almanac her sister gave her has never steered her wrong. It’s guided her along the way, and she holds fast to it as she steps into the unknown.
I didn’t know how this book would end. But I do know that time and time again, God has walked with me through every ending to every book I’ve written. When I hold fast to that truth, I can have faith and the courage to move forward rather than let fear get the better of me. And speaking of fear . . .
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 30
Texas Book-aholic, October 1
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 2
Where Faith and Books Meet, October 2
Locks, Hooks and Books, October 3
Blogging With Carol, October 4
The Book Club Network, October 5
Becca Hope: Book Obsessed, October 5
Live. Love. Read., October 7
Holly’s book Corner, October 8
Tell Tale Book Reviews, October 9
Raining Butterfly Kisses, October 9
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 10
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 11
Simple Harvest Reads, October 12 (Guest Review from Mindy)
Books You Can Feel Good About, October 13
Wishful Endings, October 13
To celebrate her tour, Sara is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Barnes & Noble gift card, a $15 Starbucks gift card, and a hardcover copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.