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Literature / A Twisted Tale

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A Twisted Tale is a series of young adult novels written by Liz Braswell, Jen Calonita, and Elizabeth Lim, and published by Disney Press.

Set within an Alternate Continuity, each novel revolves around a What If? story if a certain event in a Disney Animated Canon film had played out differently, usually by a negative outcome that results in the story's Downer Beginning by The Bad Guys Win while the heroes work towards fixing it.


As of 2022, entries in the series include:

  1. A Whole New World: What if Aladdin had never found the lamp?
  2. Once Upon A Dream: What if the sleeping beauty never woke up?
  3. As Old As Time: What if Belle's mother cursed the Beast?
  4. Reflection: What if Mulan had to travel to the Underworld?
  5. Part of Your World: What if Ariel had never defeated Ursula?
  6. Mirror, Mirror: What if the Evil Queen poisoned the prince?
  7. Conceal, Don't Feel/Let It Go: What if Anna and Elsa never knew each other?
  8. Straight On Till Morning: What if Wendy first traveled to Neverland with Captain Hook?
  9. So This is Love: What if Cinderella never tried on the glass slipper?
  10. Unbirthday: What if Wonderland was in peril and Alice was very, very late?
  11. Go the Distance: What if Meg had to become a Greek god?
  12. What Once Was Mine: What if Rapunzel's mother drank a potion from the wrong flower?
  13. Almost There: What if Tiana made a deal that changed everything?
  14. When You Wish Upon a Star: What if the Blue Fairy wasn't supposed to help Pinocchio?

Compare these other Alternate Continuity approaches to the Disney Animated Canon:


Tropes in this series include:

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    In General 
  • Adaptational Expansion: Many of the stories do this.
  • Alternate Universe: Aside from the general “what if” plot point, a few stories have a few more divergences from canon that aren’t specifically tied to the main change. Such as: Gus and Jaq being regular mice, Mr. Smee being a hallucination by Hook, etc.
  • Darker and Edgier: Since the books are usually about the bad guy almost winning and expanding on the villains, these Disney stories are subject to this by the series. There's a lot more death, murder, tyranny, revolution, mentions of abuse, and so on. Heck, Part of Your World even establishes that Cthulhu exists in the The Little Mermaid universe.
  • Musical Theme Naming: Most of the books are named after the Signature Song of their source movie, or a lyric of it.
  • What If?: The main hook of the series; every key plot twist can be traced back to a key moment in the original narrative.

    A Whole New World 
  • Adaptational Backstory Change: The orphan children that Aladdin and Jasmine meet in the movie are related to people in Aladdin's social circle. The brother and sister are also the nephew and niece of Duban, one of Aladdin's friends.
  • Adaptational Name Change: In the comic series, Aladdin's mother was called Zena. In here, she's known as Hatefeh.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: Razoul of all people turns out to be alot more pleasant compared to how much of a sadistic brute he was in the movie. He's more understanding of Aladdin's thievery as he witnessed the boy grow up before he became captain and isn't as cruel-hearted like in the movie.
  • Ascended Extra: Remember the woman in yellow that remarks about Aladdin "getting into trouble early"? In this story, she becomes a major participant in the uprising against Jafar as she rallies the other townsfolk to fight on behalf of Jasmine and Aladdin.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Jafar spites the heroes by using his last wish to erase all types of magic. Not only does this leave the Genie powerless, but it also will make it harder for Aladdin and Jasmine to fix the mess the evil vizier left behind. Despit this set-back, Jasmine still decides to push forward and rebuild the kingdom into a better system for everyone. She is promoted to the Sultana of Agrabah and as her first decrees she appoints Morgiana as her new vizier and makes Aladdin her First Consort.
  • Broad Strokes: Aladdin and the King of Thieves is referenced, with Aladdin's father having left the family in search of a better life for them and Aladdin's mother dying while her husband is gone, resulting in Aladdin becoming a street rat. However, it is stated that Abu was a gift from Aladdin's mother, while Aladdin: The Series establishes that Abu left a circus of thieves to join Aladdin.
  • Broken Pedestal: Jasmine experiences this when she learns of the social problems in Agrabah and acknowledges that her father was a more flawed ruler than she believed.
  • Death by Adaptation: The Sultan is killed early on as part of Jafar's coup, and Jafar sacrifices Iago and Carpet to gain more power. Razoul and several of his soldiers would also be killed and used as undead minions.
  • Humanity Ensues: Jafar wishing all magic in the world away has the side effect of turning Genie into a human, with the only hint to his former nature being a slight blue tint to his skin. Since magic is as natural to Djinns as something like walking upright or reading books is to humans, he's not happy about this turn of events. And he's none too fond of the whole walking thing either.
  • It's All About Me: A good assessment of Jafar's final act, as he wishes that all magic should die with him.
  • The Magic Goes Away: The last thing Jafar does before dying is to wish all magic in the world away, which also has the side effect of turning Genie into a human.
  • Morality Pet: A dark variation of this; Jasmine speculates that Jafar sacrificed Iago to try and see the future because Iago was the only thing Jafar remotely cared for, and otherwise his sacrifice would have meant nothing.
  • Mythology Gag: Morgiana shares the same name as another resourceful woman from the Arabian Nights collection.
  • Original Character: Duban and Morgiana, Aladdin's childhood friends who grew up on the streets and join him and Jasmine's rebellion.
  • Ragtag Band of Misfits: A good description of Aladdin and Jasmine's efforts to oppose Jafar, with the aid of Agrabah's street rats and lower class citizens.
  • Shoo Out the Clowns: Iago is nowhere to be seen in A Whole New World. This is because he was killed so that Jafar could see into the future.
  • Walking the Earth: Feeling regret for killing a human (Jafar), Duban decides to leave Agrabah and travel the world to work out his issues. At the very least, he's accompanied by the now human Genie.

    Once Upon A Dream 
  • Armor-Piercing Question: At one point, Maleficent is shown torturing Aurora's parents, and explicitly asks if they never tried to keep their daughter in their lives because they would have preferred a son.
  • Death by Adaptation: Maleficent kills Aurora's parents, King Stefan and Queen Leah, to use their blood to maintain her power in the dreamworld. This is especially heartbreaking as it means they will never be reunited with the daughter they were forced to give up as a baby.
  • The Bible: Aurora references the story of Noah's Ark and Philip's horse is presumably named for Samson.
  • Parental Substitute: In Aurora's dream, Maleficent becomes one to Aurora after uprooting her Abusive Parents.
  • Shown Their Work: Philip states that his horse, Samson, is part Nisaean. Niseans are an extinct horse breed, but are historically known to be treasured for being "super-horses". At the time of Sleeping Beauty (roughly 14th century to 16th century), the Nisean horse breed would've been very endangered or extinct according to known history.
  • Spot the Imposter: At one point, Maleficent tries to trick Aurora by sending a duplicate of Philip to confront her; the real Philip confirms his identity by sharing various embarrassing secrets that the impostor can't believe he'd tell anyone.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: While Aurora never has a chance to deliver it directly, after she learns of the circumstances that led to her being raised by the fairies, she often asks why her parents hid her away or why her guardians never told her about her real history, as they could have told her about her real family and presented it as a game without telling her that it was true.

    As Old As Time 
  • Ascended Extra: Monsieur D'Arque just had a couple of scenes in the original film, but here is revealed to have been part of the long-term prosecution of magical beings in the region.
  • Big Bad: Monsieur D'Arque, who has revealed to have been locking up those with magical abilities, including Belle’s mother.
  • Bittersweet Ending: At the conclusion, Gaston is in prison and Monseiur D’Arque is dead, but the Beast is still trapped in his beast state even if his servants have been restored and Belle’s influence helped him retain his mind.
  • Covered with Scars / Disease Bleach: As a result of years of torture at Monsieur D'Arque's asylum to remove her magic, Rosalind's beautiful blonde hair is prematurely white and her face is heavily scarred.
  • Fantastic Racism: Monsieur D'Arque has an excessive prejudice against magical creatures, even if their 'talent' consists of nothing more than an ability to make really good cakes.
  • Gratuitous French: French words are dropped every now and then, but much of it is used incorrectly. For example, Lumiere continuously calls Belle, "mon chéri", rather than "ma chérie".
  • Heroic Sacrifice: At the conclusion, the Beast sacrifices a chance to return to human form so that his servants can be restored instead.
  • Likes Older Women: Alaric Potts’ diary notes that he had this preference, to the point that he wondered if his son (Chip) would end up falling for the daughter of his friend Maurice.
  • Missing Mom: Belle's mother Rosalind was missing for much of her life - not by choice, as she was taken by force to Monseiur D'Arque's asylum and submitted to years of torture to make her 'pure'.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The key divergent moment from canon is when Belle touches the rose before the Beast finds her in the West Wing, which somehow disrupts the spell and literally seals the castle from the wider world, while also giving Belle a vision that reveals that the Enchantress was her mother.
  • Shipping Torpedo: Lumiere’s relationship with the duster, who is never named in this version of the tale, is unofficially over when she expresses a prejudice against magical beings that Lumiere does not share.

  • Chinese Mythology: In Reflection, Mulan journeys with the Shang family's guardian, ShiShi, into the Chinese underworld, Diyu, which is ruled by King Yama.
  • Demoted to Extra: In Reflection, Mulan leaves Mushu, Khan, and Cri-Kee in the living world while she travels to Diyu. She specifically leaves Mushu because she knew that he would complain during the journey.
  • Downer Beginning: Reflection starts with the Huns definitely being killed by the avalanche this time, but Shang is fatally injured by Shan Yu in the process.
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: Just like in the movie, the book doesn't even try to hide the sexist worldview of Ancient China. Not only is it mentioned that women are only expected to marry someone, Shang also believes that only men should be soldiers. He later changes his mind after he learns the truth about Ping.
  • In Spite of a Nail: Shang still finds out that Fa Ping is actually Mulan. He also mentions that he plans to reveal this to the Emperor but the book ends before he goes through with his plan.
  • Missing Mom: Averted. Shang mentions that his mother is at home, which is why she isn't seen in the movie.
  • Real After All: When Shang recovers, he comes to assume that his experience in Diyu we as just a dream. Ping reveals to him that it was real after all by claiming she had the exact same dream as him and recounts the specific details of it to him.
  • Rescued from the Underworld: Reflection is about Mulan journeying into Diyu to rescue Shang.

    Part of Your World 
  • Adaptation Expansion: Eric's kingdom is named Tirulia.
  • Classical Mythology:
    • Ariel mentions that her cousin Lara is an athlete and at one point mentally prays to the gods that things work out.
    • A circuex is described as a powerful magic spell. "Circuex" is likely derived from Circe, an enchantress in Greek mythology.
    • The Tirulians have a story about Neptune and Minerva competing over who would be the patron god of Tirulia, and Neptune somehow won by conjuring up a useless font of undrinkable saltwater from the sea. This is taken from the founding myth of Athens, except now with their Roman counterparts and Neptune winning.
  • Downer Beginning: Part of Your World starts with Tirulia having become an empire two years after the events of The Little Mermaid and has been invading neighboring countries while Eric and Vanessa are in charge. We learn shortly afterward that Ursula/Vanessa succeeded in marrying Eric without intervention and Ariel was forced to return home without her voice, acting as the new queen of Atlantica while her father has been presumed killed by Ursula (officially as punishment for her role in Triton's apparent death, but mainly because none of her older sisters can be bothered with the responsibility).
  • Eldritch Abomination: Ursula intends to use the powers of the Elder Gods (yes, those Elder Gods), who are said to have come from "seas beyond [the seas of the Old Gods], between the waves, between the stars".
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: At the beginning of Part of Your World, Tirulia invades a village near the Ibrian Mountains in the kingdom of Alamber. In addition, the village lives near the Veralean Mountains, the village of Garhaggio, and there is a later mention of the village of Arlendad. Judging by these pseudo-Spanish names as well as the Ibrian Mountains likely being a reference to the Iberian system of mountains in Spain, Alamber is likely the equivalent of Spain.
  • Handicapped Badass: Ariel has managed to be an effective ruler of the seas for five years despite the obvious handicap of not having a voice.
  • Jerkass Realization: As well as Triton accepting that Eric played a key part in his rescue and acknowledging that his past hatred of humans was excessive, Arista apologises to Ariel for leaving her responsible for the kingdom and volunteers to assist her father after his return so Ariel can pursue her new role as ambassador to the humans.
  • Shout-Out: Ursula uses the dark powers of the Elder Gods through a book she got from Carcosa to unleash death on the Merpeople and the Tirulians.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Ursula has Flotsam and Jetsam "fish" for Flounder, and Ariel and Sebastian are horrified at what she may do to Flounder while he's in her clutches.

    Mirror, Mirror 
  • Abusive Parent: Ingrid and Katherine's father is hinted to have beaten them as children and is also misogynistic, yelling at them for not doing chores like the women they are when he finds them playing with toys on the floor.
  • Adaptational Alternate Ending: Instead of the Evil Queen dying from falling off a cliff as she does in the film, she is imprisoned (still in her hag form) in the dungeon of her former castle and will remain there for the rest of her life. Also, Snow White and her prince don't ride off into their castle in the clouds - instead, Snow White is crowned the new Queen of her kingdom and expresses hope that one day she and Henrich will officially marry.
  • Adaptation Expansion:
    • Snow White's parents are named King Georg and Queen Katherine.
    • Snow White's parents ruled over a province and answered to the Holy Roman Emperor.
    • The Evil Queen's name is Queen Ingrid.
    • The Evil Queen is the sister and lady-in-waiting of Snow's mother, thus making her Snow White's aunt as well as her later stepmother.
    • The name of Snow White's prince is Prince Henrich.
    • Henrich's kingdom borders north of Snow White's.
  • Adaptation Name Change: The Evil Queen's name is Queen Ingrid, rather than the typically used Queen Grimhilde (which hasn't been used as much recently, except for in A Tale of...).
  • Age Lift: Snow White is seventeen during her story, rather than her more well-known age of fourteen.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Snow White is most well-known for being a kind and gentle girl, but when she finds out that the Evil Queen not only poisoned her lover but also killed her mother and banished her father, this takes her on a path to remove her evil aunt from power and have her tried for her crimes.
  • Cain and Abel: Ingrid is glad that her sister, Katherine, is gone so that she can marry Georg and be the new queen. In fact, Ingrid lethally poisoned her own sister. However, a flashback shows that it wasn't always like this, as Ingrid used to be a good big sister to Katherine and both were subject to their father's abuse.
  • The Corruptor: It is all but explicitly stated that the Magic Mirror is the reason the Evil Queen turned to evil, and it even attempts to do the same to Snow White before she manages to destroy it.
  • Disappeared Dad: Snow's father disappears after the passing of her mother, Katherine, and his subsequent marriage to Katherine's sister. The Evil Queen spreading false rumors that he went mad leads to the assumption that he ran off. He was actually banished by her, his absence further enforced by a spell that made him feel ill if he tried to return to the kingdom, but he and Snow manage to reunite during the story.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Snow leads her kingdom in an uprising against the Evil Queen with help from the Dwarves and throws her in jail to have her tried for her crimes.
  • Evil-Detecting Baby: One of Ingrid's flashback chapters reveals that when Snow White was a baby, she would cry every time her aunt (reluctantly) held her. Ingrid was convinced from these reactions that the infant could sense the darkness in her soul.
  • For Want of a Nail: Strangely, while the book is marketed as "What If? the Evil Queen poisoned the prince?" (which is revealed to eventually happen during the prologue), the actual point of divergence is much earlier, when the prince finds Snow White before the Queen does and helps her reunite with her father.
  • The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry: Between Ingrid and Katherine, whom Ingrid had poisoned.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: The Magic Mirror, the source of the Evil Queen's evil.
  • How We Got Here: The first chapter begins with Snow discovering Henrich seemingly dead before the rest of the book flashes back to the events leading up to it.
  • Ironic Name: The Evil Queen's real name is Ingrid, which means "Ing is beloved/beautiful", when her father had little real interest in being a father to either of his daughters.
  • Missing Mom: Snow White's mother fell ill and died. She was actually poisoned.
  • Mistaken Identity: Near the end, after suffering a Villainous Breakdown, Ingrid mistakes the young woman before her for Katherine. It's Snow White.
  • Mythology Gag: A Tale of... previously used the idea that the Evil Queen's father turned out to be abusive.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: If Ingrid hadn't described Henrich as "as good as dead", Snow White wouldn't have figured out that he wasn't actually dead in time to break the curse.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Snow is described as having her mother's face and her father's eyes. Near the end, Ingrid mistakes her for Katherine.
  • Switching P.O.V.: The chapters alternate between Snow White's POV and her stepmother's.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Snow White; rather than just running away from the palace to hide, she takes steps to rally opposition to her stepmother.
    Ingrid: Katherine?
    Snow White: It's Snow White. You will be tried for your crimes. Guards, take her away.
  • Virtue Is Weakness: The Evil Queen's justification for ruling the kingdom differently than Georg and Katherine. Ingrid believed that their kindness and generosity made them weak rulers, which is why she had poisoned Katherine and eventually banished Georg.

    Conceal, Don't Feel 
  • Adaptation Expansion: The book introduces Lord Peterssen and explains that he was Elsa's regent before she officially ascended. This is carried over into Frozen II: Dangerous Secrets.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance: Olaf is created by Elsa just after the deaths of her parents, serving as an important confidant to her over the next few years.
  • Canon Character All Along: Freya, a seamstress from Arendelle who's also the best friend of Anna's parents, is actually a disguised Queen Iduna, periodically checking up on her daughter.
  • Evil Chancellor: Hans attempts to set himself up in this role with the aid of the Duke of Weselton, the Duke introducing Hans to Elsa so that the prince could become a confidant for Elsa due to their similar ages. The apparent long-term plan was that Hans would marry Elsa and form a trade agreement that was more beneficial to Weselton than their current arrangement, but this obviously failed as Elsa legitimately never sees Hans as more than a friend, and he is so desperate by the time he finds Anna that he tips his hand as to his true agenda too quickly.
  • From Bad to Worse: Elsa intervenes when Grand Pabbie tries to change Anna's memories, which results in a curse that causes Elsa and Anna to lose their memories of each other, in addition to Elsa forgetting she has powers and that Anna's heart and body would freeze over again if she spends too much time around Elsa. As a result, Agnarr and Iduna are forced to have Anna's godparents raise her instead while they keep an eye on Elsa.
  • Happily Adopted: Anna is raised by her godparents, Tomally and Johan. Tomally is an old friend of Iduna and the couple are ordinary bakers.
  • Mythology Gag: Some of the words from the songs of the original film appear in either dialogue or Elsa’s thoughts.
  • No-Sell: Hans attempts to court Elsa and Anna, but Elsa never sees him that way and Anna's already into Kristoff by the time Hans learns she even exists.
  • Wistful Amnesia: Anna and Elsa don't remember each other but miss each other anyway. Anna loves playing in the snow and making snowmen, and her trademark cookies are shaped like a snowman who would look suspiciously like Olaf.

    Straight On Till Morning 
  • Adaptation Expansion: Tinker Bell was cast out of fairy society for wanting to hang out with Peter Pan instead and they refuse to help her with anything unless she comes back.
  • An Arm and a Leg: In the final confrontation, Wendy implies that people are telling tales of how Hook will keep losing other limbs to Peter.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: When attempting to interrogate Peter Pan’s shadow via torture, Hook tried using “Knives, pincers, hot brands, tacks through the nails, fingernails drawn across slate boards” and having Smee play the concertina while drunk. None of those methods worked.
  • Batman Gambit: Wendy's final plan to confront Hook depends on him reacting in a certain way.
  • Break Them by Talking: Wendy attempts to do this to Hook.
  • Cute Mute: Tinkerbell, as always, with Wendy having trouble communicating with the fairy without Peter to "translate" as he did in the film.
  • Deal with the Devil: With Peter having never come back for his shadow, Wendy makes a deal with Captain Hook to get to Neverland in return for the shadow.
  • Exact Words: As in the original films, Hook exploits this; he agrees with Wendy that he will take her to Never Land and back at some future date, but intends to force her to stay on the ship as he never explicitly agreed to take her to the shore of Never Land.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Tinkerbell is forced to overcome her own jealousy when Wendy is the only person available to help rally the forces of Neverland against Hook's pirates after Peter basically disappears.
  • Imaginary Friend: Mr. Smee is a figment of Captain Hook's imagination in this version instead of a real person.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Wendy is quite horrified to learn that by making the fateful deal with Hook, she has played a part in the demise of Never Land, to the point where she breaks down crying. Even the text in the book clearly says: "What had she done?"
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The whole situation of this novel arises because Tinkerbell preferred to keep Peter away from the Darling house rather than help him retrieve his shadow, which leads to a bitter Wendy making a deal with Hook and giving him access to Peter's shadow.
  • The Smurfette Principle: As it turns out, Skipper, one of the Lost Boys, is actually a girl, but she basically enjoys so many of the Boys' activities that they don't consider her a "girl" in the same sense as Wendy.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Without any evidence that Neverland is real, John and Michael have grown out of Wendy's old stories, John, in particular, being very cynical about his sister’s tales.
  • Translator Microbes: Tinkerbell uses pixie dust that allows Wendy to understand what Tink and other fairies are saying.

    So This Is Love 
  • Adaptation Expansion: The opening details Cinderella's conversation with the prince, as well as how her father and mother got married.
  • Adaptational Nonsapience: In this story, the mice are just mice, and so they can't help Cinderella escape being locked in.
  • Adaptational Villainy: The Grand Duke, a loyal servant to the King in the animated movie, is here a Treacherous Advisor seeking to overthrow the King and take control of the kingdom for himself.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Lenore (Cinderella's Fairy Godmother) reveals that this is basically the reason she's Cinderella's godmother; Cinderella's grandmother protected Lenore when magic was originally being banned from the kingdom, prompting her to promise to protect Cinderella's mother after she was born, but Lenore fled in fear as the prejudice against magical beings became greater, only checking back in to the household after Cinderella's mother was dead.
  • Didn't Think This Through: The Grand Duke invokes this as he muses that it's inevitable that practically every woman he meets will claim ownership of the glass slipper for the chance to marry the prince, cursing the king's impulsive proclamation.
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap: Cinderella is forced to break her remaining glass slipper to prevent her stepmother using it to claim one of her daughters was the mystery girl at the ball, and the Fairy Godmother is limited in how much of her own magic she can use to help Cinderella; as she describes it, she can set Cinderella on a path, but it's up to Cinderella to take proper advantage of those opportunities.
  • Eek, a Mouse!!: Cinderella basically uses this to escape the prison the Grand Duke sent her to; she gathers mice in her dress and then throws crumbs on the guard who comes to take her away, leaving him staggering back long enough for Cinderella to escape.
  • Fantastic Racism: There's a longstanding prejudice against fairies in the kingdom, which is why the Fairy Godmother kept her magic secret.
  • Named by the Adaptation: The Fairy Godmother is named Lenore, The King is named King George, the Prince is named Charles, and the Grand Duke is named Ferdinand of Malloy. The kingdom itself is named Aurelais, while the city is named Valors.
  • "Rashomon"-Style: Invoked when Lady Tremaine recalls her first meeting with Cinderella, as she recalls her stepdaughter treating Lady Tremaine like a new present and showing off to her own daughters, where Cinderella thought she was just being polite and didn't expect that Anastasia and Drizella would be as bad at music as they were.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: The prince's aunt and the king's sister, Duchess Genevieve, who learns about Cinderella's status as the 'lost princess' and accepts her as Charles's wife because she recognises that Cinderella wants to marry Charles for the right reasons.
  • Secret Test of Character: Lady Genevieve gives Cinderella one after she confirms that Cinderella is the woman Charles has fallen in love with, Cinderella's reaction to the idea of becoming a princess assuring Genevieve that Cinderella recognises the responsibilities of being a princess and queen where other girls would just be interested in wearing fine gowns and expensive jewellery.
  • Timmy in a Well: When the Grand Duke locks Cinderella in the dungeons, her dog Bruno alerts Genevieve and Cinderella's friend Louise to the fact that she hasn't just left the kingdom.

  • 100% Heroism Rating: Mary Ann. Everyone in Wonderland adores her, and even the Queen of Clubs is shocked and saddened upon hearing of her death.
  • Babies Ever After: The epilogue mentions that Alice and Katz went on to marry and have children.
  • Blue-and-Orange Morality: The Wonderland residents, as usual, but especially the Queen of Hearts. To wit, she’s sacking her own land, executing and pillaging anyone she can get her hands on, just in order to gather enough toys so that when the end of time comes, she’ll be the winner. What will winning do? Absolutely nothing – she won’t get to enjoy her spoils, and she won’t remember it after the reset - she’ll simply be the winner at the end of that game. Alice finds this latter part absolutely bizarre, but to the other Wonderland residents it makes perfect sense.
  • Camera Fiend: Alice, whilst in England. Most of her days are spent running around and photographing things. This actually proves especially useful when bringing the real culprit behing Mrs. Yao's smashed window to light.
  • Clock Tower: Wonderland has one: the Great Clock on the Plain of Time. Being Wonderland, it has a surprisingly friendly face with eyes that move back and forth.
  • Does Not Like Spam: Although Alice is deeply fond of sweets, she can't stand liquorice. However, she is prepared to force one down if it means she can alter perspective and crush the Card Cutter's skull.
  • The Dog Bites Back: The White Rabbit was already tired of the suffering, but it was Mary Ann's death that pushed him over the edge, causing him to deliberately try and end time before the Queen of Hearts was ready.
  • Eye Scream: The Queen of Hearts is fond of inflicting this on her enemies for some unknown reason; most notable is the Hatter who had an eye plucked out by Jubjub birds for refusing to give up Mary Ann’s location, and Mary Ann, whose sole appearance is wearing a blindfold with blood running down her cheeks.
  • Family-Unfriendly Violence: A surprising amount of it, ranging from Mary Ann’s bloodied appearance in the photo, the March Hare’s fate, Alice getting skewed by a tove and feeling cutting through her sinews and muscles, and later on getting stabbed in the heart and almost dying.
  • I Never Said It Was Poison: After Alice is mugged, she’s able to figure out the culprit fairly quickly, due to them mentioning the one item that was stolen before she’d had a chance to tell them properly about the theft.
    "I never said it was my camera that had been stolen."
  • Interquel: The story is revealed at the end to take place between the end of Alice in Wonderland and the beginning of Through the Looking-Glass.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: The Queen of Hearts' cruel reign finally comes to an end as she is deposed and then thrown into a cage by her former subjects.
  • Knight of Cerebus: The Card Cutter. Anytime he’s mentioned, the mood turns dark. And when he does finally make an appearance, the encounter ends with Alice being stabbed in the heart.
  • Meaningful Name: The White Rabbit’s double, Mr. Coney. A “coney” is an old word for “rabbit”. And there’s also Katz, and his double, the Cheshire Cat.
  • My Instincts Are Showing: During a giant game of Snakes and Ladders, the Dodo has to hood himself with a colander so that he can stomach sliding down a snake. Later on, this is what makes the White Rabbit so tricky to catch, as his instincts cause him to evade any and all attempts at capture.
  • Mythology Gag: There are several references to the original Alice's Adventures in Wonderland that inspired the Disney film that provided the basis for this book:
    • There are three references to things connected with the original novel:
      • Kexford, the city Alice lives in, is a thinly-veiled reference to the real-life city of Oxford, where it was written.
      • Alice mentions her friend "Charles" and his maths. The author of the original book, Lewis Carroll, a.k.a. Charles Lutwidge Dodgdson, was a mathematician.
      • Finally, Cheshire Cat refers to Alice as 'liddel Alice'. The surname of the "real" Alice which the story was written for, was Liddel.
    • At another point, the Hatter quips that Alice once “believed in 6 impossible things before breakfast”, a nod to Through the Looking Looking Glass, the official sequel to the original novel.
  • No Periods, Period: Averted. The family housekeeper, Mrs. Anderbee, notes that it’s not the right time for Alice’s "flowers", when the latter feigns sickness.
  • Not Himself: The Mad Hatter, who had the Nonsense knocked out of him. This being Wonderland, means that his appearance is affected as well, appearing more in proportion, and somewhat drabber. Worst of all, he’s more logical and makes sense, which he hates.
  • Perspective Magic: Alice is unable to grow and shrink as she once did, but instead she’s able to alter perspective, such as making things smaller or larger, or reaching off into the far distance to grab things.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: The Queen of Clubs. She won’t immediately get involved with the Queen of Heart’s affairs, but if Alice is able to show an egg enough proof that the Heartlanders wish to rise up against their queen, she’ll step in to assist. She also takes the time to heal Alice after being attacked by toves, and awards both her and the Dodo a prize for winning at Snakes and Ladders.
  • Reset Button: What the ‘End of Time’ actually entails; it ends the both the game and Wonderland entirely. In their place, a new game/Wonderland begin, and anyone deceased it is brought back to life. There also seems to be some small amount of choice as to what someone is the next time around – the Dodo still wants to be a Dodo, but with a different wig, and the Hatter wants to try his hand at being a Cobbler.
  • Shout-Out: Alice is told to forget the 'airspeed velocity of an unladen sparrow'.
  • Spooky Photographs: The plot is kicked off when Wonderland residents start appearing in developed photographs that Alice takes. Terrified Wonderland residents. Uh-oh...
  • The Unfought: The Queen of Hearts. Granted, Alice tries to fight her, but is interrupted by the Gryphon, and the real final challenge ends up being the White Rabbit.

    Go the Distance 
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Persephone had blonde hair in the movie, but is described as having dark hair in the book.
  • Ascended Extra: Persephone was a background goddess in the Hercules movie and the animated series, but is a major character here.
  • Beta Couple: Hades and Persephone have fallen in love, similar to Meg and Herc.
  • Covers Always Lie: Despite being featured heavily on the cover, Hades isn't a prominent figure in the story and appears sparingly.
  • Deity of Human Origin: Meg's quest is to become a goddess so she can stay with Hercules on Mount Olympus.
  • Disappeared Dad: Meg's father Leonnatos walked out on her when she was five and she hasn't seen him since.
  • For Want of a Nail: The story kicks off because Zeus refuses to let Hercules leave Olympus after his parents have spent so long waiting for him, requiring Meg to attain godhood in order to be with Hercules instead of Hercules giving up his newfound godhood to be with Meg.
  • I Just Want to Be Special: One of Meg's goals in attaining godhood is to figure out her place and contribution to the world.
  • Narnia Time: Meg thought she spent a week in the Underworld after making her initial deal with Hades, but in reality she was there for two years, which better justifies her former lover moving on.
  • Race Against the Clock: Meg is given ten days to complete her quest.
  • Rescued from the Underworld: Meg's goddess test is to rescue her ex's current wife from the Underworld within ten days.
  • Wacky Parent, Serious Child: While Thea generally worked hard to provide for her daughter, she was also prone to rash impulsiveness which annoyed Meg.
  • Unreliable Narrator: As it turns out, Hades manipulated Meg so that she thought her ex quickly got over her and moved on after a week when in reality she was in the Underworld for two years.

    What Once Was Mine 
  • Commonality Connection: Both Rapunzel and Gina were raised by goodwives.
  • Fanfic: The story is one in-universe, being told by a boy to his sister as his own spin on the film.
  • For Want of a Nail:
    • Because Arianna ingested the Moondrop Flower, Rapunzel instead has magical silver hair that gives her the power of hurt.
    • Flynn is accompanied by another thief named Gina.
  • Historical Domain Character: Countess Elizabeth Bathory.
  • In Spite of a Nail:
    • Rapunzel still ends up locked away in a tower under the watch of Mother Gothel. However, the circumstances are different; instead of being kidnapped for her powers, Gothel was a goodwife for the royal family and was given Rapunzel to care for due to her powers making her dangerous to other people and herself.
    • Rapunzel still escapes from the tower because she wants to see the floating lanterns on her eighteenth birthday.
  • Living Weapon: Gothel was raising Rapunzel to be this so she could sell her.
  • Mystical White Hair: Due to Arianna ingesting the Moondrop Flower instead of the Sundrop Flower, Rapunzel is born with silvery white hair instead of golden blonde hair.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Instead of the Sundrop Flower, the Moondrop Flower is found, and instead of giving Rapunzel the power of heal, it instead gives her the power to hurt. The concept of a Moondrop counterpart as well as the "Hurt Incantation" (the fan name for the Reverse/Decay Incantation before they were officially named) were introduced in Tangled: The Series.
    • Rapunzel and Flynn are joined by a third companion, Gina, much like with Cassandra in the television series. And like Cassandra, Gina wasn't raised by her parents but by someone else.
    • Taking the Moondrop does make your hair a magical glow like in the show, but Rapunzel ends up with silver hair while Cassandra got blue hair.
  • Self-Insert: It's implied that the boy created Gina as an insert character for his sister.
  • Shout-Out: The story is told by a boy to his sick sister in a reference to The Princess Bride.
  • Show Within a Show: The framing device takes place in the "real world", with the siblings having watched Tangled and the brother basing his story off of the movie.
     Almost There 
     When You Wish Upon a Star