The first difference between most of the film or cartoon versions I’ve seen and the book is that the action down the hole is taking a lot longer than I imagined. You expect Alice to go straight into the mad hatter’s tea party and bump into the queen but already a third of the book has passed and she is still not much further than where she started.
The other difference is that it is clear that there is a continued dream state because despite growing smaller and larger and facing other animals Alice never once seems to be that concerned other than to cry a bit for the world she is leaving behind.
Highlights from chapters three and four
* Alice and the animals swim out of her pool of tears and then play a game to dry each other out but how ever hard she tries Alice cannot get the mouse to share his family history and she frightens everyone off mentioning her cat and its liking for eating birds
* Then the white rabbit reappears running down the corridor and mistakes her for a maid and sends her back to his house to get another fan and a pair of gloves
* But once inside Alice notices a bottle saying ‘Drink Me’ and after drinking it she grows so large that her foot is up the chimney and her hand is out of the window where she uses it to try and grab the white rabbit and his gardener as they try to pull her out
* They then send a lizard, named Bill, down the chimney but Alice kicks him out and the poor animal is being helped by friends by the time Alice eats some cakes and shrinks back down to size
* She evades capture by the angry group of rabbit and his friends but now needs to find something else to eat to make her return to the same size as she was in the real world and she spies a mushroom with a caterpillar on top sucking on a hookah