Tag: Alice in Wonderland

The Top 10 Most Mouthwatering Foods in Children’s Fiction

We’ve all craved a magical food that doesn’t actually exist, or we’ve read about a real food that didn’t live up to the hype of our childhood imaginations. Here are some of the foods (in no particular order) that still seem to appear in my dreams.


1. Everlasting Gobstoppers (Charlie and The Chocolate Factory)


Willy Wonka with an Everlasting Gobstopper

Image via iCollector


There are what feels like hundreds of candies within the walls of Willy Wonka’s factory, all of which sound absolutely mouthwatering. However, everlasting gobstoppers stick out to me because they actually exist. You can go down to your local corner store and buy a box right now if you really wanted to.

But you don’t want to. Because the real everlasting gobstoppers are flavorless little balls of cement. And the fictional ones are, well, fictional.




2. Fruit From the Toffee Tree (The Chronicles of Narnia)


An illustration of the toffee tree

Image via Citizen of Anvard


C.S. Lewis doesn’t do the most creative job of describing this treat. The fruit falls from a tree, and it’s described as being “not exactly like toffee – softer for one thing, and juicy – but like fruit which reminds one of toffee.

The tree formed when a toffee candy was planted in the ground in the moment of Narnia’s creation, and it grew at an incredible rate because the song that brought Narnia to life was still clinging to the world.

Must taste pretty good, with an epic backstory like that.


3. ‘Eat Me’ Cookies (Alice in Wonderland)


'eat me' cookies from Alice in Wonderland

Image via Amino Apps


There are a couple of bad side effects when you snack on these magical cookies. In Alice in Wonderland, Alice takes a bite of one these and grows to be about the height of a one-story house.

Yet somehow, that just makes them more tempting. What’s life without a little risk of becoming gargantuan?


4. Pasta Puttanesca (a Series of Unfortunate Events)


Pasta Puttanesca inspired by 'A Series of Unfortunate Events'

Image via Fiction-Food Café


Pasta puttanesca is a very real dish, and something you can order at most Italian restaurants. However, sometimes the way something tastes in reality just can’t compare to the way it tastes in your imagination.

In A Series of Unfortunate Events, the pasta puttanesca serves as a small amount of comfort in the bleak world that the Baudelaire children have found themselves in after the death of their parents. Something about the warm, homey feeling that it provides makes it an absolutely crave worthy dish.


5. Green Eggs and Ham (Green Eggs and Ham, obviously)


The cover of 'Green Eggs and Ham'

Image via io9


Sam-I-Am was pretty insistent about this dish. If someone follows you from a house, to a box, to a tree, to a train, to the dark, to the rain, to a boat just to get you to try a bite of their food then they’re probably insane.

But they probably also have some pretty good eats.



6. Leek and POTATO sOUP (Coraline)


Potato and leek soup

Image via Food Network


Coraline isn’t particularly excited by this dish, choosing instead to stick with her frozen mini-pizzas. However, considering the themes of family and parental love in this novel, this soup dish gives off a cozy and homey sort of vibe.

And if someone hands you a warm pot of homemade soup, that someone must love you an awful lot! Certainly more than your eyeless, soul stealing, puppet mom.


7. Saffron Tea (Kiki’s Delivery Service)


A moment from 'My Neighbor Totoro,' another Studio Ghibli film

Image via Studio Ghibli


Studio Ghibli, the Japanese animation studio, has a knack for animating foods in the most delicious looking way possible. This particular gif is from My Neighbor Totoro, as the saffron tea from Kiki’s Delivery Service didn’t make it’s way out of the book.

In the book the tea serves as a reminder of Kiki’s home while her travels become too much to handle. The smell and the warmth remind Kiki of her mother, and the memory helps keep her spirits high while she’s speeding around on her broom.


8. Unicorn Blood (Harry Potter Series)


A bleeding unicorn from 'Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone'

Image via Sci-Fi Stack Exchange


This one is a bit macabre, but there’s something undeniably intriguing about the unicorn blood in the Harry Potter.

The golden trio (plus Draco) are serving detention in the Forbidden Forest with Hagrid, when they stumble upon a pool of shiny silver goo. When they see a shadowy figure knelt over the body of the unicorn, the kids all run away screaming, except for Harry who stumbles over a tree root.

He’s saved by a centaur, the story moves on, and no one even asks for a sip of that shiny, magic goop.

Maybe this is why I never got my Hogwarts letter.


9. Magic Beans (Jack and the Beanstalk)


Some perfect beans

Image via Tourism Currents


If a bag of beans is worth selling your family’s only source of income, they better be some damn good beans.



10. Giant Chocolate Cake (Matilda)


The moment where Bruce Bogtrotter must eat a whole cake in 'Matilda'

Image via Giphy


Bruce Bogtrotter is one of literature’s bravest heroes. He’s punished for his humanity (what child wouldn’t try to sneak a piece of cake?) and still emerges triumphant despite all odds.

While this scene can be a bit nauseating, there’s always something enticing about the thought of having a triple layered chocolate cake plopped down directly in front of you.

Plus, you get to dive straight into that sucker fork first.

Might not be such a punishment after all.




Featured image via Simplemost

down the rabbit hole

A Mysterious Manuscript Found in Old Copy of ‘Alice in Wonderland’

Do you like second-hand books? I love those used copies not only because of the book value but for some unexpected surprises hidden in the book. Literally. 

A mysterious manuscript was recently found in a used copy of Alice in Wonderland in a second-hand bookshop in Warrnambool, Australia. Lorraine Smith, the owner of the bookshop, recalled that the customer came to her saying that she found this “surprise” while browsing Alice in Wonderland.

Just like going down a rabbit hole, you never know what you’re going to find! The manuscript was indeed mysterious. It’s a parchment-like material with a zig-zag top and recognizable numbers “1583” on the bottom. What else is written on it? No one knows. 


mysterious manuscript

Image via Lorraine Smith


Smith said:


“I could tell that it was very old…But I didn’t know what to do with it.”

To find out what’s on it, her daughter Karyn sent this manuscript to a professor of early modern history at the University of Queensland and got the result: the document could be traced back to the 16th century, more than 200 years before the British arrived in Australia. According to Sarah Laskow, a staff writer at Atlas Obscura, “In 16th-century Britain, a contract would have been drafted twice on the same piece of parchment and cut into a zig-zag; in the future, each party could authenticate the other’s copy by matching up the unique cut pattern.” 


Okay, one thing is confirmed: it’s a contract. But what else is waiting on the other side of the rabbit hole? See Laskow’s article for more information about the mysterious manuscript.

Featured Image Via El Escobillon 

Alice in Wonderland Rabbit

Five of the Hip-Hoppin’est Rabbits From Literature

Easter’s coming up, and whether or not you get a protected holiday – looking at you Ireland with your two week vacation – there’s something worth celebrating, whether it’s 50% off Easter chocolates come Monday, or famous rabbits in literature. Though at Bookstr, we’re going to celebrate with both!


1. Rabbit from Winnie-the-Pooh



Image via Basement Rejects


Rabbit gets the first slot on our list because of all the rabbits in literature, Rabbit seems the most lazily named. Sure, three other bunnies on this list have Rabbit, or a not-so-subtle reference to rabbits, in their name, but at least they have surnames? Rabbit is just Rabbit. But then again, Piglet is also not so original..


2. Peter Rabbit from The Tale of Peter Rabbit


Peter Rabbit

Image via The New York Times


Peter Rabbit is a fan favorite in this office, but the Hollywood treatment has really put a downer on our love for this bundle of fluff. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge fan of James Cordon, but forty-seven seconds of the trailer was enough for me. 


3. Peter Cottontail from The Adventures of Peter Cottontail


Peter Cottontail

Image via Amazon


Another rabbit named Peter, but this one’s surname is Cottontail! How original! I joke, I kid, these are childhood classics that I love and love dearly. This might be the Mandela Effect in action, but I’m convinced that Peter Rabbit and Peter Cottontail are two separate entities in literature, but apparently Peter Cottontail is just a rhyme, and Peter Cottontail doesn’t have any beautiful old-timey illustrations, which is upsetting.


4. Literally any character from Watership Down


Watership Down

Image via Good Reads


I think it’s safe to say that Watership Down is the most famous piece of literature about rabbits. And by that I mean, only about rabbits. If you haven’t read this American classic, you should put it on your list of books to read before you die, because despite the main characters being rabbits, they’re a fully formed culture with their own language including proverbs, poetry, and mythology.


5. Bunnicula from Bunnicula: A Rabbit-Tale of Mystery



Image via Amazon


Some may say Bunnicula is more Halloween than Easter, but hey, we’re listing famous rabbits in literature, and what list would be complete without my favorite Dracula spin off. The Monroe family finds a bunny at the theatre after their screening of Dracula, and name him Bunnicula. Chester the cat is convinced Bunnicula is actually a vampire, despite his vegan vegetable-juice diet, and attempts to get Harold the dog’s help to save the family from this potential threat. Told from Harold’s perspective, Bunnicula is a wild ride that I absolutely loved as a kid.


Honorable mention goes to Nivens McTwisp, The White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland


Featured Image via Another Concept.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland disney lewis carroll crazy

10 Lewis Carroll Quotes to Make You Gyre and Gimble in the Wabe

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is textbook whimsy. As far as whimsy goes, you can’t do much better. Lewis Carroll’s the king of whimsy. When he began a sentence, I bet, he didn’t have a plan for how it would end. Following that, when he began a book, such as the Wonderland books, he probably didn’t know what they would be about.


Here are ten quotes of Carroll’s that begin to uncover his completely askew worldview.


1. “‘Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?’
‘That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,’ said the Cat.
‘I don’t much care where—’ said Alice.
‘Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,’ said the Cat.”



2. “Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”



3. “It’s a poor sort of memory that only works backwards.”



4. “It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”



5. “She generally gave herself very good advice, (though she very seldom followed it).”



6. “Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”



7. “‘Why is a raven like a writing-desk?….Have you guessed the riddle yet?’ the Hatter said, turning to Alice again.
‘No, I give it up,’ Alice replied: ‘What’s the answer?’
‘I haven’t the slightest idea,’ said the Hatter.”



8. “I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, ‘Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.’”



9. “Speak in French when you can’t think of the English for a thing.”



10. “As you have invited me, I cannot come, for I have made a rule to decline all invitations; but I will come the next day.”




Feature Image Via Disney


5 Famous Books That Authors Regretted Writing

Life for an author is tough. From receiving multi-million dollar Hollywood film offers to obtaining legendary literary status, being an author isn’t always sunshine and rainbows.


Though these five authors have received widespread attention and, in some cases, critical acclaim, their iconic works have led to deep-seated regret.


1. Brokeback Mountain by Annie Proulx


New Yorker

Image Via Rebekka Dunlap / The New Yorker


It may come as a surprise to some readers that the 2005 Academy Award-winning film Brokeback Mountain starring Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal was inspired by a short story of the same name written by Annie Proulx. First appearing in The New Yorker in 1997, Proulx’s groundbreaking story offered an honest and touching portrayal of same-sex love during a time in which acceptance was at a low point in America.


Though Proulx’s work was groundbreaking for it’s open representation of LGBT romance, she has animosity towards the fan fiction the story and adaptation have invited. According to Proulx, fans have re-written the ending of the story, which ultimately undermines the entire point of the tragic tale.


“I wish I’d never written the story. It’s just been the cause of hassle and problems and irritation since the film came out. Before the film it was all right,” she said in a 2009 interview with The Paris Review


“[People] can’t bear the way it ends—they just can’t stand it…They can’t understand that the story isn’t about Jack and Ennis. It’s about homophobia; it’s about a social situation; it’s about a place and a particular mindset and morality. They just don’t get it.”


2. Jaws by Peter Benchley



Image Via Amazon


If you’ve ever seen 1975 Steven Spielberg film Jaws, then I’m guessing your childhood was spent avoiding ocean water. The iconic film was inspired by a 1974 novel of the same name written by Peter Benchley. Both the novel and the film portrayed a killer shark hunting down innocent swimmers.


The shark is eventually conquered by man, yet his death didn’t seem to soothe audiences. Both representations led to intense fear and hatred of Great White Sharks, making them into the ocean’s #1 villain. Benchley later expressed regret for his menacing depiction of killer sharks after witnessing the change in perception of the creature. 


“What I now know, which wasn’t known when I wrote Jaws, is that there is no such thing as a rogue shark which develops a taste for human flesh,” he told the Animal Attack Files in 2000.


“Knowing what I know now,” Benchley reportedly wrote in 2006, shortly before his death. “I could never write that book today. Sharks don’t target human beings, and they certainly don’t hold grudges.”


3. The Anarchist Cookbook by William Powell



Image Via Amazon


A widely controversial book, The Anarchist Cookbook is a “How To” guide for making explosives and illegal drugs. It was originally written as a way of protesting the Vietnam War. Powell’s book has been linked to various shootings, including a recent school shooting in Colorado in 2013. Powell has since regretted the book after witnessing its effects and has tried to get it pulled from shelves, ultimately unsuccessfully.  


Powell wrote the story when he was only nineteen-years-old, using military manuals that were made public and kept at the New York Public Library. Though the premise of the book may seem extreme to many, it came during a time in which American males were being drafted into the Vietnam War, a war which many Americans didn’t agree with.


“My motivation at the time was simple; I was being actively pursued by the US military, who seemed single-mindedly determined to send me to fight, and possibly die, in Vietnam. I wanted to publish something that would express my anger. It seems that I succeeded in ways that far exceeded what I imagined possible at the time,” he wrote in The Guardian in 2013.


“Over the years, I have come to understand that the basic premise behind the Cookbook is profoundly flawed.The central idea to the book was that violence is an acceptable means to bring about political change. I no longer agree with this.”


4. Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll


Lewis Caroll

Image Via Amazon


Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, also known as Alice in Wonderland, is undoubtedly a childhood favorite for millions of readers. Written by Lewis Carroll, born Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, and published in 1865, Alice in Wonderland initially received negative reviews from critics, but gained popularity later on in the end of the 19th century.


The fantasy novel is perhaps Carroll’s most famous work, though it isn’t his only. While fans have grown to love the story, Carroll grew to despise it. As the story became more popular, Carroll found himself in the public sphere, which, it turns out, he wasn’t a fan of.


“All of that sort of publicity leads to strangers hearing of my real name in connection with the books and to my being pointed out to and stared at by strangers and being treated as a ‘lion,’” Carroll wrote in an 1891 letter to a friend. 


“And I hate all of that so intensely that sometimes I almost wish I had never written any books at all.” 


5. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess 



Image Via Amazon


A Clockwork Orange is a classic novel which can be found on many lists of the best novels of all time…it’s also often banned. Nevertheless, the novel is widely-known for its portrayal of sex, violence, and young rebels. As with any subject, readers interpreted the novel in varying ways, leading to some regret on Burgess’ end. These interpretations appeared to stem at least partially from Stanley Kubrick’s Academy Award-nominated adaptation.


“The book I am best known for, or only known for, is a novel I am prepared to repudiate,” Burgess wrote in a 1985 biography about D. H. Lawrence. “It became known as the raw material for a film which seemed to glorify sex and violence.”


“The film made it easy for readers of the book to misunderstand what it was about,” he said, “and the misunderstanding will pursue me till I die. I should not have written the book because of this danger of misinterpretation, and the same may be said of Lawrence and Lady Chatterley’s Lover.”



Featured image via Amazon/Wordpress