The Story of Alice

The Story of Alice

Lewis Carroll and The Secret History of Wonderland

Summary

SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2015 COSTA BIOGRAPHY AWARD

This is the secret history of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Wonderland is part of our cultural heritage. But beneath the fairy tale lies the complex history of the author and his subject. Charles Dodgson was a quiet academic but his second self, Lewis Carroll, was a storyteller, innovator and avid collector of ‘child-friends’. Carroll’s imagination was to give Alice Liddell, his 'dream-child', a fictional alter ego that would never let her grow up.

This is a biography that beautifully unravels the magic of Alice. It is a history of love and loss, innocence and ambiguity. It is the story of one man’s need to make a Wonderland in a changing world.

Reviews

  • It is the ultimate book about Alice - comprehensive and scholarly, but so delightfully and elegantly written that it's a true work of literature
    Jacqueline Wilson

About the author

Robert Douglas-Fairhurst

Robert Douglas-Fairhurst is a Professor of English Literature at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of Magdalen College. His books include Becoming Dickens: The Invention of a Novelist, which won the Duff Cooper Prize, and The Story of Alice: Lewis Carroll and The Secret History of Wonderland, which was shortlisted for the Costa Biography Award and was a BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week. He writes regularly for publications including The Times, Guardian, TLS and Spectator. Radio and television appearances include Start the Week and The Culture Show, and he has also acted as the historical consultant on TV adaptations of Jane Eyre, Emma and Great Expectations, the BBC drama series Dickensian, and the feature film Enola Holmes. In 2015 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.
Learn More

Sign up to the Penguin Newsletter

For the latest books, recommendations, author interviews and more