For my full review, including the part where I gush in GIFs, check out my blog here:From the moment I heard about this book, I was enraptured. A re-imagining of the Alice in Wonderland tale in a modern day setting with not one but two hot guys, made complete with an amazing cover. Really, what more could you want? From the moment I started reading, Splintered had me completely taken in. I have to admit, I was a little nervous starting. I've had experiences in the past with books where you are so giddy and excited to begin, and then it's a let down read. Let me get this out the way now - Splintered will in no way disappoint. Splintered is not so much a retelling of the Alice tale, but a continuation of the story with A.G. Howard's own unique stamp upon them. Alyssa can hear bugs and flowers whispering to her, and she starts believing that she's as crazy as her mother, who is currently in a mental institute. When Alyssa learns that Wonderland is in fact a real place, she must go through a series of tests to prove herself and ultimately save her mother from the Liddell curse. I really can't do the novel any justice by trying to describe it, so you'll just have to trust me when I say that this is a truly brilliant piece of work. Anita has such a beautiful style of writing that you are never left bored or wondering when the good bits are going to come. While the story rolls out in the traditional format that most novels about first discovery follow, Anita sets the scene perfectly. We're introduced to pretty much all the major players in the novel and get a little 'taster' of what they are all like. Alyssa was a breath of fresh air as the main character, a girl driven by the love she has for her family and for Jeb, the boy who has been her best friend for years, but also a secret love. What I loved most about her was that Alyssa had a backbone, she had strength and a wise mind. She loves fiercely and I felt a real connection when reading her, and could sympathize with everything that she was going through.I can't write this review without mentioning the boys. Oh, the boys! Okay, so love triangle. But this is one love triangle you will love! Both boys, Jeb and Morpheus, have their own deliciousness and charm that will leave you head over heels for one or the other. Or, if you are like me, in love with both. Yes, I am totally Team Jebpheus! Jeb is quintessentially the guy we all want. The best friend, the one that makes you laugh, smile, cry. He's kind, caring, fiercely loyal and protective and ruled by his heart - which may be a bad thing, but oh swoon! Then you have Morpheus. The complete opposite of Jeb, but just as lovable. I like to think of them as the Stefan and Damon of Wonderland (okay, so I'm a little Vampire Diaries obsessed at the moment!). He's cunning, a little vindictive, seductive and charming. He's got the idea of cyrptic down to a fine art, and the 'M' doesn't just stand for Morpheus, but also mysterious. He kind of takes on the role that the Catepillar plays in Alice, a guide of sorts for Alyssa. But don't let him fool you. I seriously swear that villanry (if that wasn't a word before, it is now!) is taking over YA - think Cole from Everneath, Warner from Shatter Me. But, like, even better!One of the best things too about the book is the twist near the end. Obviously I'm not going to give it away, but if you think you know what you are getting with this novel, then think again, because there is so much more to expect with this!And of course, now I saved the best for last. Sure, characters may be at the centre of a novel, but for me the be all and end all is the setting that the novel is placed in. And this is where Anita brings out the WOAH! factor. I simply cannot begin to put sentences together describing the world that she has created. Sumptuous. Dark. Mysterious. Compelling. Thrilling. Twisted. Delicious. Mad. Exciting. And they are just all of the words I could think of from the top of my head. Anita has crafted such a beautifully delicate world, one that pays real tribute and homage to Lewis Carroll in ways that I can't even begin to fathom. Every step, every turn that Alyssa, Jeb and Morpheus make feels like you are there alongside them. Splintered was a truly thrilling and compelling story that I could not simply put down until I finished, despite the time of night - or should I say day, considering I finished it at 6:30 in the morning. One of the most highly original and completely unique stories that you'll read, Splintered will have you hanging to every word.