How is Alice's Adventures in Wonderland different from other books of its time?

Of all Lewis Carroll's major works, Alice in Wonderland has a unique standing in that it's whimsical, nonsense literature. Countless essays discuss how this novel contrasts with the vast amount of strict, extremely moralistic children's literature of the Victorian era. Yet this novel is odder still because it was written by an extremely upright, ultra-conservative man — in short, a quintessential Victorian gentleman.
Since its publishing, Alice has been translated into every major language and has become a perennial best-seller (ranking with the works of Shakespeare and the Bible) in demand. This novel, despite its Victorian roots, is timeless in its appeal.