Thursday, May 3, 2012
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
** Note: Third Paragraph has spoilers for both The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West.
As I stated in my last post I wanted to read the original Wizard of Oz to compare it to Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, so I did.
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is an easy read with short chapters that are perfect for reading one or two chapters to my three year old son as a bed time story each night. Also, it keeps his attention while reading even though there are no pictures to look at, so that gives the book a big thumbs up from a Mom perspective. I was surprised at how close to the film version the book is, there were no surprise facts or story lines when reading the book that I didn’t know from watching the movie, which is a kudos to Warner Bros, but it left me a little disappointed that I knew exactly what was going to happen and no surprises. I give the book a 3 star rating, good story and great for children’s bed time story, but a little slow in some parts.
When I compare the original to Wicked, I was very surprised at how closely Gregory Maguire followed the events of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, but with a few creative differences. For example, in Chapter 3 of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Dorothy does have dinner with Boq and his family the same as in Wicked, however in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Boq is wealthy Munchkinlander and in Wicked Boq is poor. In Chapter 5 of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz we learn how the Tin Woodsman was cursed by the Wicked Witch of the East paid by an old woman whom didn’t want her serving girl to marry him, the same as in Wicked, surprisingly even the payment of a cow and two sheep was the same. Maguire however made them a Cow and two Sheep, which of course are Animals that can speak rather than the normal animals presented in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz . I was very surprised to find how closely Maguire followed The Wonderful Wizard of Oz’s storyline, if I had not already given Wicked a 5 star rating Maguire’s diligence with staying true to the original storyline would have caused me to increase my star rating. Wicked is about the Wicked Witch of the West, and so the storyline does not meet Dorothy until the final section, but Maguire does a great job of leading us to the meeting and staying true to original chain of events created by L. Frank Baum.