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Thursday, February 23, 2017

#Book #Review: 5 out of 5 stars for The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum @Scholastic

TITLE: The Wizard of Oz
SERIES: Oz, Book #1
AUTHOR: L. Frank Baum 
PUBLISHER: Scholastic
PUBLICATION DATE: 1958 (first published May 17, 1900)
FORMAT: Paperback
LENGTH: 156 pages
GENRE: Children's Fiction, Classics, Fantasy

Join Dorothy Gale, Toto, and all of her friends as they explore the incredible land of Oz. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is American's most enduring fairy tale. From the moment Dorothy puts on the silver slippers (changed to ruby slippers by MGM to take advantage of their new advance in movie making: color) until the moment she clicks her heals and returns home to Kansas you will be swept away and captivated by her extraordinary story.

This edition with illustrations by Paul Granger.

This classic is still enjoyable after all these years! This was a re-read for me. I saved this 1958 vintage copy from my childhood, and I just finished reading it aloud to my daughter.

I thought I knew the story pretty well, from having read the book in my youth multiple times and watched the movie many times. However, I forgot many things such as the China Country, the field mice who saved the Cowardly Lion from the poppy field, and that Dorothy’s shoes were originally silver. Also, the violence! I had completely forgotten how the Tin Woodman beheaded various creatures. I loved my daughter’s reaction to the story. She actually has not seen the movie yet, but it didn’t take her very long to start questioning things. For example, if the Scarecrow doesn’t have any brains, how can he talk and walk and know how to do things? Or, why does the Tin Woodman need a heart when he already has feelings as evidenced by his tears? The Cowardly Lion felt that he didn’t have any courage, yet he did courageous things leaping over the abyss in the forest multiple times to carry his friends on his back. Yes, my dear! You figured it all out!! We loved when they got to the Emerald City, and Oz admitted that he had no magical powers and could not give the Scarecrow, Tin Woodman, and Cowardly Lion what they desperately desired and thought they needed. He told them to return the following day and tricked them into believing that he really was bestowing these gifts upon them when in actuality they really possessed them all along! I love the whole theme of the story, which is that we already have within us what we need. Even after her friends all received their “gifts” from Oz, they did not abandon Dorothy until they knew that she had safely returned home. Dorothy’s compassion brought them together, and they helped each other along the way. The value of friendship is so strongly conveyed by Baum.

This is a wonderful classic of good versus evil, and I can’t wait to read the rest of the series to my daughter! I think I love the book even more as an adult.

I have requested the Blu-ray disc from the library, and I will come back to add my thoughts after watching the movie again.


5 stars!! I loved it and will likely re-read it again. You should definitely put this classic on your TBR!

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