Monday, September 25, 2017

Books With Bean ~ The Wizard of Oz

Books with Bean, The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy Gale, book reviews by teens

The Wizard of Oz

Author: L. Frank Baum 
Published: 1900 
Genre: Children’s Fantasy  

Summery & What I liked about it: You might know the story from the 1939 MGM movie with Judy Garland, but before it was a movie (or the many other adaptations after it) it was a book. 

The story is much the same as the movie. Dorothy lives a grayish life in Kansas until one day she and her dog Toto are inside their house when it is whisked to Oz by a twister. Oz is a place filled with color and is very different place from home. When she gets there she finds that she has killed the evil witch that was ruling the munchkins (the inhabitants of that part of Oz), and has set them free from servitude to her. While it seems nice, Dorothy still wants to go home. So Dorothy sets out to go to the Emerald City to find the Wizard of Oz hoping that he can send her home. Along the way she meets new people who join her on her journey to the Emerald City. 

The book is the first of 15 official books by Baum 14 are full length stories and the last a collection of short stories.

There were many books written to follow it that also take place in the world of Oz that were not written by Baum. However these are too numerous for me to even begin listing here.

To say I like Oz is a understatement, growing up my older sister Emily had Wonderland, and I had Oz. While we liked the other’s books to a degree (I probably liked Wonderland more then Emily likes Oz), we always preferred our own fantasy worlds to anything else. But I’m getting off point.

Oz is a beautiful fairyland that has many marvels in it. I have always liked the childlike simplicity of it and I think while you may not learn any great lessons or morals from it, it does have the wonder and amazement that is so often missing from books written today. 

Language: None 

Romance: None 

Violence: The two wicked witches are killed, one  when Dorothy’s house lands on her when Dorothy first gets to Oz and the other melts when Dorothy throws water on her not knowing that this will kill her. It is not gory or graphic they simply die. 

Magic: There is magic in Oz. There are 4 witches at the beginning of the first book but only the two good ones are left by the end. One hardly shows up again but Glenda is a major person of interest in many of the later books. The way magic is dealt with like most children’s books of the time is as a mysterious thing that is there and does amazing things but it is not good or bad it simply is. 

Recommended Age: I first read the book with mom when I was little. I remember loving it as it was the first “Big” book I finished myself. I would recommend this book for pretty much as soon as your child can read or sooner if you want to read it with them. 6 or 7 should be fine. 

Like I said there are many books that follow it but I have only ever read Baum’s original 7. I have several reasons, 
1. Baum cares not for continuity, and after 7 books the history of Oz’s past is such a jumble that I simply got confused each time he changed it to fit with the plot of the next book. 

2. There are only so many adventures a girl can have before they all become the same. By the seventh book Dorothy is the main character of the books no more. She has moved to Oz permanently with her aunt and uncle, and while she shows up she is not the hero she was in 5 of the first 6 books. However if you wish the read all of Baum’s books go for it. 

Books with Bean, The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy Gale, book reviews by teens

This is the third installment in Books with Bean.
Read Arlene's reviews of Peter Pan and Pride and Prejudice

1 comment:

  1. I didn't know there was a series associated with wizard of oz. Good to learn something new