Review A WHOLE NEW WORLD by Liz Braswell

9:00 AM

Morning Addicts, it's Thursday and day 4 of my week of reviews! There are so many things I love in life, and one of them is the Disney princess movies. Yes, I'm one of those girls, and proud of it!
Aladdin was always one of my favorites right along side Sleeping Beauty so when I saw A WHOLE NEW WORLD by Liz Braswell (A twisted retelling of what if's and darkness--based on the beloved movie) I was all in. Read on Addicts to see how this reimagined story fell on the addiction scale.

A Whole New World (Twisted Tales #1)
Welcome to a new YA series that reimagines classic Disney stories in surprising new ways. Each book asks the question: What if one key moment from a familiar Disney film was changed? This dark and daring version of Aladdin twists the original story with the question: What if Jafar was the first one to summon the Genie?

When Jafar steals the Genie’s lamp, he uses his first two wishes to become sultan and the most powerful sorcerer in the world. Agrabah lives in fear, waiting for his third and final wish.To stop the power-mad ruler, Aladdin and the deposed Princess Jasmine must unite the people of Agrabah in rebellion. But soon their fight for freedom threatens to tear the kingdom apart in a costly civil war.

What happens next? A Street Rat becomes a leader. A princess becomes a revolutionary. And readers will never look at the story of Aladdin in the same way again. 

GOODREADS

MY REVIEW:
Life is full of questions. The greatest: what if. 
In the case of a whole new world by Liz Braswell its: what if Jafar had succeeded and got Genie's lamp, before Aladdin? What if his first two wishes: to become Sultan and the most powerful sorcerer in the world had come true?
Needless to say the whole idea of one of my favorite Disney movies getting a darker makeover................YES!!!
I was so excited when NetGalley approved me to get the ARC of A WHOLE NEW WORLD!
I wasn't sure, but I figured this book would stick pretty true to the movie for a while, I just didn't expect it to almost copy the original script Word for Word. But after that first 1/4ish of the book then the originality kicks in.
For my loyal Addicts, you know world building – a clear, realistic or just plain amazing book world I can feel myself in- is key to getting an amazing view from me. (Well one way at least.) As above you can see A WHOLE NEW WORLD managed a 4 1/2 star rating so it clearly did something right: world building. I really can't say enough about it; from the vibrant life of the city, to the very nice action pact plot, to the band of street rats (led by Jasmine and Aladdin of course) .
Which now brings me to our cast of tenacious and daring characters. 
OK, maybe I'm trying to compensate a little with that last part. 
Why you ask, simple: despite the amazingly large cast of new and old characters, about 70% of them felt very one or two dimensional. Let me break it down for you starting with our movie stars.
Aladdin- very similar to the movie only less optimistic and "carefree"/flippant. Which I actually liked.
Jasmine- she was always the strongest of the 6 O.G. Disney princesses. But man...........she really came into her own in this book and it was a show stealer. Plus how cool to see her leading a gang of street rat rebels alongside Aladdin! (though in the Aladdin TV show of the early 00's she was pretty strong too!) Plus it was interesting to see her own struggles with darkness.
Abu- very much the same and I still love this little guy.
Genie- this was a hard one for me. Genie is so iconic thanks largely to the late and great Robin Williams. So seeing this tenacious, stomach twisting hilarious character be so....... serious was hard. Plus I didn't get to see a whole lot of him in the book. I did however die for his backstory! So great to see it, but poor Genie – he used to have a wife! I won't say anymore to avoid major spoilers.
Iago- Poor Iago. He didn't get much attention. He seemed more like a tool to show Jafar's 1000% psycho personality.
Jafar- still evil – just this time we add the sick and twisted to his name. Totally terrifying bad dude. And I need to add his "golem" patrol really kept reminding me of the zombie guards of Mozenwrath from the Aladdin TV show.
Carpet-............. :( that's all I'll say on that!
The Sultan – yeah, very different from his dimwitted portrayal in the movie.
Now for new characters:
The street rats were straight from 1001 Arabian nights – which was cool, but I felt they didn't get the lime light they should have.
Morgiana- A total badass chick who was a lot of fun – especially with her and Jasmine work together. But again I felt she was too similar to another female character from the Aladdin TV show.
I think, besides the whole 70% lack of character development, my other problem was that there was too much that felt like it wasn't as original as I wanted. Maybe it's because I love the Aladdin TV show and movie and remember them both so well. Or maybe I just have such an idea of the story and it's characters already that it was hard for me to appreciate Liz's interpretation of them.

That said, I would totally recommend A WHOLE NEW WORLD! But it's very dark, deals with serious issues and character death. IMHO, teens under the age of 15 shouldn't read it, at least not without their parents reading it first. 
Major thanks, again, to Disney and NetGalley for granted me an arc in exchange for my honest opinion.

~Dynomoon

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1 comments

  1. This look good. The cover is different, but in a good way.

    Majanka @ I Heart Reading

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