Tag Archives: Alice in Wonderland

Dream Logic: A Review of Strange New World

Book cover for Strange New World by A.R. Grosjean. Image on cover is a digitally-created painting of a castle sitting on a large and very rocky mountain that has no visible vegetation growing on it. The perspective of this scene was painted from inside of a cave, so you can see the black walls and watery floor of the cave in about the first 60% of the painting. The castle and the clouds behind the castle are visible due to the sunlight pouring over them and rapidly approaching the cave. This is such a pretty and calming image. Title: Strange New World

Author: A.R. Grosjean

Publisher: Self-Published

Publication Date: April 1, 2024

Genres: Fantasy, Retelling, Humour, Contemporary

Length: 41 pages

Source: I received a free copy from the author

Rating: 5 Stars


When a peculiar man steals Kevin’s most valuable watch, he takes chase, jumping into a rabbit hole without thinking about the consequences. Now Kevin is in a strange new world where nothing makes sense. A room filling with water, voices coming from mysterious places, walking fish, and teatime. How do it all connect? Kevin’s about to find out. The deeper he goes into this new world, the more confused he is, and he still hasn’t gotten his watch back. Will Kevin find the man and retrieve what was taken from him? Will he be able to find his way back home? Could this get any stranger?


White rabbits know more than you might think.

I loved the zany dream logic of this tale. Kevin accepted almost everything that happened to him immediately, but he was also struck by the cognitive dissonance the moment he tried to make logical sense of anything. This reminded me  of lucid dreaming as well as of how funny it can be to try to describe a wild dream to someone the next morning after you’ve woken up and realized that half of it is rather nonsensical. What made sense while one slept is now confusing, and what was mildly confusing in the moment can feel like mashing six different genres together without any care given to continuity or plot development. It seemed complicated to put together despite being an homage to such a famous story, so I must tip my cap to the author for doing it so well.

There’s nothing like chuckling one’s way through a short story. This was my introduction to Ms. Grosjean’s work, and I already think I’m going to love her sense of humour if I’m lucky enough to read more from her in the future. It was tricky for me to figure out which examples of what she finds funny to include in my review that would give a small hint of what to expect without sharing too many spoilers. Let’s just say that tree huggers have an entirely different connotation in this universe than they do in our own, and I laughed out loud once I figured out what the sentient creatures who lived there thought of them.

The conversations were some of my favourite sections. Sometimes it felt as though Kevin and the various creatures he met on his adventure were speaking two completely different languages due to their different interpretations of the same word and expectations of what might happen next. This is where the author’s writing abilities really shone through the brightest in my opinion. There is nothing like using wordplay to make the audience giggle and nudge the plot forward despite all attempts to grind it to a halt so a caterpillar can pontificate a little longer.

Strange New World was a creative romp through a world many readers already know and love.


Filed under Science Fiction and Fantasy