Ensnared (Splintered, #3)

First Lines: I once thought memories were something better left behind…frozen pockets of time you could revisit for sentimental value, but more of an indulgence than a necessity.

I vividly remember reading the first book in this series and being so lost.  I kept reading it going, “…What is this?”  And here we are, at the last book in the trilogy.  Gotta say, I really like the guy on the cover of this.  He’s cute.  Though that spider on his shoulder can go away.

*Potential Series Spoilers Ahead*

After the chaotic and devastating events at prom, Alyssa embraced her madness.  She’s determined to save her two worlds and the humans and netherlings she cares so much about…even though it means going head to head against Queen Red.  But the rabbit hole has been sealed.  Alyssa’s only way into Wonderland is through the looking-glass world, a dimension full of dangerous mutated netherling outcasts.  With the help of her father and a few other friends, Alyssa will have to repair Wonderland to the state it once was.  But even if she manages to right all the wrongs, will everyone still get their happily ever after?

As I mentioned, I was totally lost when I read the previous two books.  But this time, either I’ve finally gotten the hang of Wonderland or it was tamer than it has been because it actually made sense.  I could follow what was happening!

What I really enjoyed about this book was how conniving and tricky the characters were.  It seemed like every character in Wonderland had a different word game or angle they tried to push.  It was so much fun to try to figure it all out before it happened.  It was like a puzzle.

Lucky for us, Alyssa is a clever lead.  I didn’t figure something out 20 pages ahead of her while she missed clues that were a subtle as cinder blocks falling from the sky.  No, Alyssa’s netherling side has her just as conniving and tricky as the other Wonderland characters, so she was usually right there, figuring it out quickly.  I liked that we seemed to put the pieces together about the same time.

As for the other characters, I appreciated that new layers of them were exposed (and not in a weird Wonderland-skinning-people kind of way).  Characters like Jeb and Morpheus seemed to have whole new sides to them I wouldn’t previously have suspected.  I liked that.  I actually found myself struggling to pick between the two for who I wanted Alyssa to end up with.

I thought there was tons of action in this book.  Some of it was in the form of actual fights, but most of the time it was clever mind games being played on Alyssa (usually by our dear friend Morpheus).  I find that thrilling.  Trying to puzzle out these mind games makes me feel like I’m somehow part of the story, helping the characters out.  (And since this is the third time I’ve mentioned this particular trait, I’m going to change the subject before this gets obnoxious.)

I’m going to try to talk about the ending while remaining spoiler free!  Hmm…I thought the ending actually fit really well for the story.  Alyssa made her choice without breaking my heart.  (Have fun figuring that one out!)  At the same time, I don’t want to say it was an “easy” ending, but it kind of was.  It was…convenient.  So while I was a happy reader at the time, once the afterglow left I wanted something more.

Still, I found this to be a thrilling conclusion to a very twisted series.

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