Wonderland Creek ~ Review

Before I go on with my Period Drama Dress colour series, I am going to review 'Wonderland Creek' by Lynn Austin. Of course I SHOULD review this book since the title is the name of my blog! Actually, that's why I named my blog 'Wonderland Creek,' because I like the book so much. Emma Jane also loves this book and she suggested me to name my blog 'Wonderland Creek' (as you know, I agreed whole-heartedly!)

"Lynn Austin Will Delight Readers with Her Winsome Heroine Alice Grace Ripley lives in a dream world, her nose stuck in a book. But happily-ever-after life she's planned on suddenly falls apart when her boyfriend, Gordon, breaks up with her, accusing her of living in a world of fiction instead of the real world. Then to top it off, Alice loses her beloved job at the library because of cutbacks due to the Great Depression. Fleeing small-town gossip, Alice heads to the mountains of eastern Kentucky to deliver five boxes of donated books to the library in the tiny coal-mining village of Acorn. Dropped off by her relatives, Alice volunteers to stay for two weeks to help the librarian, Leslie McDougal. But the librarian turns out to be far different than she anticipated-not to mention the four lady librarians who travel to the remote homes to deliver the much-desired books. While Alice is trapped in Acorn against her will, she soon finds that real-life adventure and mystery-and especially romance-are far better than her humble dreams could have imagined."
Don't you just love the cover, readers? Don't you just feel like diving into this scrumptious bundle of amazing papers?

The Story:
Alice Grace Ripley (a lady who reminds me a lot of myself, I might add) is very happy with her life. She works as a librarian, she has enough books to live happily (she reads the WHOLE time), she has a handsome, tall boyfriend (Gordon) and nice parents.
This story is set during the Depression, and Alice eventually loses the job she loves. To make everything worse, her boyfriend makes an end to their relationship.
Alice decides to take some old books to a small library in... I forgot the name of the place. Sorry readers (Emma tell me in the comments, please :-) Anyways, she gets stuck there and ends up being forced to stay there for a few weeks. Often in tears, the poor girl has to get used to the primitive circumstances there- no inside toilet, no electricity, no oven, no bath, no hot water taps... Alice is beginning to feel like she's living inside a book (which she is, by the way :P)
All sorts of things happen. The librarian, a man named Mack, gets shot by someone. Mack is not dead, but he pretends to be, because there's someone who wants to murder him. A hundred-year-old negro woman called Lilly, who lives at the house, helps Alice make a fake funeral and hide Mack in the woods.
Alice is also involved in many other people's problems and other things, including an old family problem, a hidden treasure, a panther walking around in the forest during night time, a pregnancy (
her friend- June Ann Larkin) and she even dates with a handsome young fiddler called Ike Arnett.
There are many unexpected twists and turns and the ending is very surprising.
I know, the story sounds very weird. In fact, you're probably thinking, 'This book is not for me.' But it is! It's amazing! It's absolutely pulchritudinous!
My favourite character is  definitely the main one- Alice Grace Ripley. I'm so much like her: scared of animals, scared of the dark, a book worm, and I'm slightly whiny sometimes, like her :P
Lillie is my second favourite character. She's so funny and makes me almost laugh out loud. And I don't laugh out loud a lot when I read, so this means she really IS funny. She is- as I said- 100 years old and a negro. So when she talks about her past, Lynn Austin takes us to the Civil War. At the end of the book she dies, but it isn't that sad, because she's died happily and at such a good age. I could go on and on about all the many, many different characters, but I won't because I don't want to spoil it for you.
And you ARE going to read it. (For the seven-millionth time, I am not bossy!)
Would I want a movie adaption of this book?
Yes and No. Yes, because it's an absolutely lovely book (definitely one in my top-ten list of books) and it needs, like all the good books, a good movie adaption, so that I can see it as well as read it. No, because it might be badly done, and different than I had imagined. Plus it might be scary (it's okay when reading, but it would be scary when watching!) and I'm not one for scary movies!!  *Hides face in mother's lap*
Now for fun, I'm going to make my own dream cast.

 Sophie Mc Shera.
Sophie Mc Shera acted as Daisy in Downton Abbey and I think she'd suit Alice. With a yellow wig of course. Alice has to be blonde. Sophie is small and so is Alice, and Sophie just looks "Alice".
(I first thought of Romola Garai, but she's too old for the role now. SOB.)

Brendan Coyle.
I wanted someone not too old (Michael Gambon, for example is too old) but not too young (so not Johnny Lee Miller or J J Field I'm afraid. SOB.) But he must be just not too old to be able to marry Alice.
Oh dear! Now I have told you that Alice ends up with Mack!!!
I don't know. A black actor with a good sense of humour. Oh yes she must be thin and frail and old.
Ike Arnett:
JJ Field
Gordon is tall, handsome and has light hair. If J J Field had slightly lighter hair, I think he'd be perfect.

June Ann Larkin:
Rose Lesley
Another Downton Abbey star.... Gwen!!!!!
June Anne is a red-head, she's young and she's lonely. I think Rose Lesley would captivate her completely.

If you have read this book, you can tell me what you think of the cast!
If you haven't read this book you should.
I mean it. This book is absolutely engaging and I rate it 10 out of 10!!!


  1. Eeeeek, I was so excited when I saw this! I'm glad you've reviewed it! :-)

    YES, I simply ADORE the cover! In fact it's one of my favorite covers ever, and one of the prettiest books on my shelf.

    The town is Acorn, Kentucky. :-P

    I absolutely love Mack. He's one of my favorite Lynn Austin men, right up there with James McGrath from Fire By Night. (You haven't read that one yet, have you? That may be my favorite of her books. It's soooooo completely amazingly awesome.) Anyways. Oh, I love Lillie! (It's actually spelled that way in the book, instead of with a Y, just so ya know.) Lynn Austin almost always has a wise old woman character in her books. I know, Lillie is so funny! I love it when she's praying and she's squeezing Alice's hand harder and harder. :-P And when she tells Alice she gave Ike some of her love potion. Hahahahaha.

    Yeah, I don't think I would want a movie adaptation of this book. I kind of like to keep it in my imagination, and like you said, if there was a movie made of it, it might be badly done and that would just never do. (Did you know that they actually made a movie of Hidden Places? I haven't seen it, but I don't want to because it doesn't look very good. It would probably annoy me to no end.)

    Hmmm, Sophie McShera isn't really how I picture Alice. Of course there is the fact that she has dark hair, but she's also British and Alice is American. I think a younger Kathryn Greenwood would be really good as Alice, but really there's no one who would be just the way I picture her.

    Brendan Coyle as Mack????? No. No, no, no, no. I'm sorry, dear, but he is really not how I imagine Mack. I think Mack should be younger, and better-looking. (Sorry, Mr. Bates, but you're not the most attractive person. :-P) Plus Mack is supposed to be really hairy, and-- Brendan Coyle with a beard-- BLECH. I've always pictured Mack kind of like Michael Fassbender, because he's about the right age and he looks really good with a beard. :-) Sorry, I can't agree with you on this one. Oh, I really hope I haven't hurt your feelings, because that is the LAST thing I would want to do. *smiles apologetically*

    JJ Field would be good as Ike Arnett. He has the right color hair and that adorable mischievous grin. :-)

    Great review! And yes, I whole-heartedly agree with your rating!


  2. ooooooooooooooh sounds like I will have to read this! it sounds amazing!!!!! great review Naomi :)

  3. Ooooh sooorrry Emma, of course it's LizzIE and of course it's ACORN and actually you are right Brendan Coyle is not exactly how I imagined Mack- I just couldn't find an actor closer to him. Yes you're right- we need someone more attractive and who looks nice with a beard. I agree. And no you have not hurt my feelings at all (I'm glad you say what you think)
    I think Daisy could easily mimick a good American accent- she's so good at accents. And as I said, she'll need a wig. Definitely.
    Yes I knew there was a movie of Hidden Places. I' sure the book is far FAR better!

  4. About two weeks ago, I was at my local library and I picked Wonderland Creek up just on a whim. I was looking for a new Christian author to love, the cover/back cover blurb looked interesting, and I decided to check it out. After I read it, I found your review and THEN realized that your blog was named after it :P (I can be a bit slow with things like that sometimes)

    Anyway, I really enjoyed WC! It's not my favorite Christian novel, but I liked the unique plot and characters (so hard to find in Christian fiction these days) and pretty much everything about it. I also liked the fact that the ending was unpredictable. (both the solving of the mystery and the romantic subplot) Overall, I'd say that WC is one of the better Christian novels I've read and I'd definitely recommend it to friends :)


    P.S. I think your blog is great - I really enjoy reading all the things you post, and I think your posts are very unique for a period drama blog :) (in a good way, of course)


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