To Read or Not to Read?

A Whole New World by Liz Braswell

Note: I received a free copy of A Whole New World from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I found the description of this intriguing. The “what if” quality of it. And that’s exactly what this was. A re-telling of the Disney version of Aladdin only with the “what if” of Jafar getting the lamp instead of Aladdin. Basically what that made A Whole New World was fanfiction and it read like it. Only I kind of don’t want to use that term because I’ve read many fanfictions that were of much better quality than this book. So it was not very good fanfiction.

The first 20% of this book was straight from the movie. Dialogue, scenes, everything. The characters even quoted the songs in a kind of groan worthy way. There were very few extra details, far fewer than I expected and they were all about Aladdin which I thought was odd. This was a “what if” that read like it should be about Jafar and we learned one small detail about him and there were maybe five pages written from his point of view. It would have been much better if half of it had been from his point of view.

And then we reached the point where the story broke away from the movie and it got a little weird. The characters really weren’t recognizable, especially Jasmine. The new characters that the author wrote in were more fully fleshed out than the originals. It was weird and disorienting.

I will say that at least it was a quick read though I think part of that was the fact that I’d basically already seen a quarter of the book while I watched the movie. Overall I didn’t think very much of this twisted tale.


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