10 Best Lewis Carroll Books – Alice and Beyond

Lewis Carroll is one of the most celebrated authors of the Victorian era. Born Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, he is best known for his two masterpieces – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (1871). But did you know that there is much more to Lewis Carroll than just the Wonderland series? In this article, we will explore his life, literary career, and the best books that every reader should add to their bookshelf.

10 Best Lewis Carroll Books - Alice and Beyond

The Life and Legacy of Lewis Carroll

Lewis Carroll was a man of many talents. Born in 1832 in Daresbury, Cheshire, England, he was the son of a country parson and the third child in a family of eleven children. From a young age, he was known for his love of storytelling and puzzles. His father was a gifted scholar of Hebrew and Greek languages, and Carroll inherited his love for language and literature.

Carroll studied at home before going to school in Richmond, London. He attended Rugby School where he played cricket. In 1851, he moved to Oxford to study Mathematics, and after completing his studies in 1854, he became a mathematics lecturer at the University. His love for mathematics was evident in his writing, and he often incorporated mathematical puzzles and games into his stories.

Carroll was an introvert and had a stutter that made it difficult for him to socialize. He found solace in writing and spent much of his time creating puzzles and writing stories for children. His family encouraged him to publish his work, and soon he became a published author.

Early Life and Education

Carroll’s childhood was filled with creativity and imagination. He spent hours writing stories and creating puzzles, and he was known for his wit and humor. His love for language and literature was evident from a young age, and he often wrote poems and essays.

Carroll’s education was also important to him. He studied mathematics at Oxford, where he excelled in his studies. He became a mathematics lecturer at the University and continued to teach there for many years. His love for mathematics was evident in his writing, and he often incorporated mathematical puzzles and games into his stories.

Literary Career and Achievements

Sylvie and Bruno

Carroll’s literary career began with the publication of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in 1865 under the pseudonym Lewis Carroll. The book was an instant success, and its wide appeal soon made it a classic. The novel features a young girl named Alice who falls through a rabbit hole and lands in a fantasy world inhabited by peculiar creatures. The book is known for its whimsical characters, nonsensical language, and playful word games. It has been adapted into numerous plays, movies, and TV shows.

Carroll’s juvenilia also included poems, essays, and manuscripts of stories, many of which he illustrated himself. He also wrote and published other books like Phantasmagoria and Other Poems (1869), The Hunting of the Snark (1876), and Sylvie and Bruno (1889).

The Impact of Lewis Carroll’s Works

Carroll’s impact on the world of literature has been immense. His works are still widely read and admired for their creativity, humor, and originality. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland has inspired countless writers and artists, and it remains a cultural touchstone to this day. His legacy also includes his contributions to the field of mathematics and his love for puzzles and games.

Carroll’s life and work continue to fascinate and inspire people around the world. His creativity, imagination, and unique perspective on the world have left an indelible mark on literature and popular culture, and his legacy will continue to be celebrated for generations to come.

Exploring the Wonderland Series

While Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass are undoubtedly Carroll’s most famous works, they are not the only ones to explore the whimsical world of Wonderland. There are many other books in the series that are equally delightful and worth reading.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is the first book in the series, and it tells the story of a young girl named Alice who falls down a rabbit hole and enters a fantasy world filled with peculiar creatures and wondrous adventures. The book is a delightful romp through a magical world, and it has been beloved by generations of children and adults alike.

In this book, readers are introduced to a cast of memorable characters, including the Mad Hatter, the March Hare, and the Caterpillar. Each character is unique and adds to the overall charm of the story. The book is also filled with clever wordplay and puns, which make it a joy to read.

Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There

Through The Looking Glass and What Alice Found There

The sequel to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There, takes Alice on a journey through a mirror into an alternate reality. The book contains many of the same characters found in the first book, including the White Rabbit, the Cheshire Cat, and the Queen of Hearts. It is a charming and inventive sequel that showcases Carroll’s creativity and imagination.

In this book, readers are treated to even more wordplay and puzzles than in the first book. The story is also filled with memorable moments, such as the scene where Alice meets Tweedledum and Tweedledee, and the famous Jabberwocky poem.

The Annotated Alice: The Definitive Edition

The Annotated Alice: The Definitive Edition (The Annotated Books)

The Annotated Alice is a special edition of the Wonderland series that includes annotations and commentary by Martin Gardner. The book provides the reader with a deeper understanding of the countless puzzles and word games that are found throughout the series. It is a must-read for anyone looking to unlock the mysteries of Wonderland.

In this edition, readers can gain a deeper appreciation for the thought and care that Carroll put into crafting his stories. The annotations provide insight into the historical and cultural context of the books, as well as explanations for some of the more obscure references and jokes.

Overall, the Wonderland series is a timeless classic that continues to captivate readers of all ages. Whether you are a fan of fantasy, wordplay, or just good storytelling, these books are sure to delight and entertain you.

Delving into Carroll’s Mathematical Works

Lewis Carroll, the pen name of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, was not only an accomplished writer, but also a brilliant mathematician. His fascination with math and logic is evident in his literary works, including his famous Wonderland series. However, he also published several books on the subject, including A Tangled Tale (1885), The Game of Logic (1887), and Symbolic Logic and the Game of Logic (1896). These books may not be as famous as the Wonderland series, but they are still worth exploring.

A Tangled Tale

A Tangled Tale

A Tangled Tale is a collection of short stories that combine math puzzles and detective stories. The book is a fun read for anyone interested in math puzzles or logic games. Each story is filled with intricate puzzles that require the reader to think outside the box. For example, in one story, a group of travelers must cross a river with a limited number of boats. The reader must figure out how to get everyone across the river without leaving anyone behind. Carroll’s clever use of mathematics and logic makes this book a must-read for anyone who enjoys a good brain teaser.

The Game of Logic

The Game of Logic

The Game of Logic is a book that teaches logic through the use of symbols and diagrams. The book is aimed at children, but it can be enjoyed by adults as well. It is a fascinating look into the world of logic and problem-solving. Carroll’s unique approach to teaching logic makes the subject accessible and engaging. The book is filled with colorful diagrams and illustrations that help to explain complex concepts in a simple and easy-to-understand way. Whether you are a child or an adult, The Game of Logic is a great way to improve your logical thinking skills.

Symbolic Logic and the Game of Logic

Symbolic Logic and the Game of Logic

Symbolic Logic and the Game of Logic is a collection of essays that introduce readers to symbolic logic and its applications. The book is a challenging read, but it is also incredibly rewarding. It will help you improve your critical thinking skills and broaden your understanding of the subject. Carroll’s writing style is clear and concise, making even the most complex concepts easy to understand. The book includes a variety of topics, including syllogisms, propositional logic, and predicate logic. It is a great resource for anyone interested in delving deeper into the world of logic and mathematics.

In conclusion, Lewis Carroll’s mathematical works are a testament to his genius. His books are not only entertaining but also educational. Whether you are a fan of math puzzles or logic games, or you simply want to improve your critical thinking skills, Carroll’s books are a great place to start.

Unraveling the Nonsense and Poetry

Lewis Carroll was not only known for his contributions to the literary world, but also for his mastery of nonsense and poetry. His poems are charming, witty, and full of wordplay. They are a delight to read and a testament to his creativity. Carroll’s works continue to inspire and entertain readers of all ages, even to this day.

The Hunting of the Snark

The Hunting of the Snark

The Hunting of the Snark is a poem about a group of adventurers who set out to catch a mythical creature called the Snark. The poem is full of wordplay and whimsy, and it is a joy to read. The characters in the poem are vividly portrayed, each with their own unique quirks and personalities. The poem also contains many hidden meanings and messages, making it a fascinating read for those who enjoy deciphering puzzles and riddles.

One of the most interesting aspects of The Hunting of the Snark is the way in which Carroll plays with language. He creates new words and phrases, and uses them in unexpected ways. For example, in the poem, the Bellman says:

“For although common Snarks do no manner of harm,

Yet I feel it my duty to say

Some are Boojums–“

The word “Boojum” is a nonsense word that Carroll created, and it has since become a part of popular culture. The poem is full of clever wordplay like this, making it a true masterpiece of nonsense literature.

Jabberwocky and Other Poems

Jabberwocky and Other Poems (Dover Thrift Editions: Poetry)

Jabberwocky and Other Poems is a collection of Carroll’s poems that includes the titular poem, which contains many nonsensical words and phrases. The poem is a masterpiece of nonsense and wordplay, and it is one of Carroll’s most famous works. The poem tells the story of a young boy who sets out to slay a fearsome creature called the Jabberwock. Along the way, he encounters many strange and fantastical creatures, and the poem is full of vivid imagery and imaginative language.

One of the most interesting things about Jabberwocky is the way in which Carroll used language to create a sense of mystery and otherworldliness. The poem contains many words that are made up or used in unusual ways, such as “frabjous” and “vorpal”. These words add to the sense of wonder and enchantment that permeates the poem. The poem is a true work of art, and it has inspired generations of readers and writers alike.

Phantasmagoria and Other Poems

Phantasmagoria and Other Poems: with Original Illustrations

Phantasmagoria and Other Poems is a collection of Carroll’s poems that includes several haunting and melancholic pieces. The poems showcase Carroll’s talent for creating atmosphere and evoke a sense of mystery and wonder. The poem “The Little Ghost” tells the story of a ghost who haunts a house, and the poem “Melancholetta” is a melancholic meditation on the passing of time.

What sets Carroll’s poetry apart is his ability to create vivid and memorable characters, even in the context of a short poem. The characters in his poems are often quirky and eccentric, but they are always relatable and endearing. Carroll’s poetry is a true testament to his creativity and imagination, and it continues to captivate readers of all ages.


In conclusion, Lewis Carroll was a multifaceted talent, and his works continue to captivate readers of all ages. Whether you are a fan of his Wonderland series, his mathematical works, or his poetry, there is something for everyone in his body of work. We hope that this article has inspired you to discover the best Lewis Carroll books for yourself and to explore the limitless creativity of this beloved author.


Why is Lewis Carroll controversial?

It is strongly suggested that Lewis Carroll likely romantically pursued young girls during his lifetime. Jenny Woolf, his biographer, has confirmed these suspicions in her book The Mystery of Lewis Carroll.

What inspired Alice in Wonderland?

Alice in Wonderland is based on a real girl called Alice Pleasance Liddell, who Carroll knew personally.

Did Lewis Carroll write anything else?

Carroll wrote other wacky stories involving other worlds and talking creatures. While he is best known for Alice in Wonderland, he also wrote works such as Jabberwocky, The Hunting of the Snark, The Walrus and the Carpenter, and The Game of Logic.

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Eddison Monroe
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