Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
As a historical, this is an interesting book. As fiction, it's an entertainingread but could have used an editor that would have prevented the author's research from interupting the story. By that, I mean, there are passages of the book meant to provide setting but read like something lifted directly from a "Daily Life In Victorian England" article. We're not reading what the character was a part of, but instead we get what the character observes, as if they too were removed by 100 years or so. Honestly, would a young woman comment on the fact that her mother had survived her child bearing years? Perhaps the ver precocious Alice of this book would - she shows remarkable observational skills when the story needs it, and then she loses them when they would require the author to take a position on what happened between the Liddel family and the man that would become known as Lewis Caroll. That is perhaps my greatest criticism of this book: If you're going to write real person fiction, have some conviction of plot! Decide what happened and tell that story. If the known facts can't don't fit your story, well, it is/> fiction. But don't dangle a question in front of your readers to keep their attention and then refuse to answer it.
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