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The Wizard of Oz: Celebrating the Hundredth Anniversary
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The Wizard of Oz: Celebrating the Hundredth Anniversary (Oz #1)

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  198,636 ratings  ·  6,060 reviews
Celebrate the 100th birthday of a beloved American classic.

From the moment it appeared in 1900, The Wizard of Oz sparked the imaginations of children and adults alike. The inhabitants of Oz have become an important part of American literary history.

When Dorothy and her little dog Toto are suddenly swept from the plains of Kansas to the land of Oz, they meet up with some o
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published June 15th 2000 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) (first published 1900)
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Kerry They are quite different things. The 1939 film is (deservedly) a classic. It is somewhat faithful to the book but also is more complex in many ways…moreThey are quite different things. The 1939 film is (deservedly) a classic. It is somewhat faithful to the book but also is more complex in many ways and adds new layers, like the overlay of life in Kansas vs. Oz (Miss Gulch/Wicked witch, farmhands as Scarecrow, Tin Man, etc).

The visuals are stunning. It is more dramatic ("surrender Dorothy") and better structured to build drama and tell the story. In the book, things happen and then are resolved in the next chapter. In the film, things build and build to a much more spectacular climax. And then the flying monkeys are so much more terrifying than in the book, one of the greatest villains of film history.

Yes, the film can't cover all the extra material of the entire series, (especially the political subtexts) and the later character evolution, but on a film vs the first book of the series comparison, the film is vastly superior in my opinion.(less)
Steven Davis L. Frank Baum posited himself as the Royal Historian of Oz. Noted in the Annotated Wizard of Oz, there is evidence in the books that points to Oz…moreL. Frank Baum posited himself as the Royal Historian of Oz. Noted in the Annotated Wizard of Oz, there is evidence in the books that points to Oz existing on Earth as part of an unknown continent somewhere in the southern Pacific Ocean.(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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mark monday
 photo dorothy_zpsfa87eb6e.gif


Rick Polito, Marin Independent Journal, 1998
Once upon a time there lived a Golden Age gay icon, who whiled away her pre-waxing years sitting atop a split-rail fence in some dour, nondescript American Midwest landscape. Her dreams of a more outrageously fierce existence in the big city (wearing roller skates and one-foot-diameter afro wigs and dancing to Army of Lovers in between lines of blow) were hemmed in on all sides by rusted farm equipment, NAPA Auto Parts Stores, and a lone, dejected Applebee’s out on the turnpike. Kansas didn’t ev ...more
Zoë (readbyzoe)
Book 20/100 for 2015

I really, really liked this book! I honestly had pretty low expectations going into this book and thought it wouldn't compare at all to the greatness of the 1939 movie (which is one of my favorite movies), but I was wrong. It was one of the best children's classics that I've ever read and I even loved how it wasn't that similar to the movie, so it kept me interested. I also had a beautiful hardcover Puffin Classics edition, so that make the experience even better! All in all,
Riku Sayuj

The Wizard of Oz as An Economic Parable: A Short Introduction

This might be common knowledge or it might not be. Some economics textbooks claim this is a wonderfully esoteric nugget: The story of Oz was an economic parable. Take that, all you who said economics can't be fun.

Redistributions of wealth caused by unexpected changes in the price level are often a source of political turmoil. From 1880 to 1896 the price level in the United States fell 23 percent. This deflation was good for Haves (cred
This is a book I read as a child, even before I saw the musical, and enjoyed a lot. However, my memory of it was overshadowed by the film. So it was a good experience to read it again as an adult.

The book is worth reading, not least because it differs in some major ways from the film adaptation. The biggest difference is that the whole dream sequence scenario, in which people from Kansas are transmogrified into figures of fantasy, is entirely absent. Dorothy wears Silver Shoes, not Ruby Slippers
Jason Koivu
A wonderful tale for its time, this book has transcended its own intentions and exploded into an iconic creation that continues to instill its fans with cherished, lifelong memories.


Although I usually prefer the original books over their movie adaptions, I have to hand it to the film this time. The Wizard of Oz took the best from the source material and embellished what was missing, adding what they needed to in order to create a truly magical experience that has endured to this day.


The book an
Henry Avila
Dorothy, (from Kansas, where ever that is), lives with her Aunt Em and Uncle Henry, on the flat, American prairie, the harsh Sun beating down, from the gray sky, making everything turn gray ... the gray grass, house, clothes and especially the people, animals, are probably gray too, might seem the least likely place that she visits, that is real. No trees, brooks, beautiful birds singing or anything colorful around the poor farm. But our adventures begin when a tornado lifts unlucky Dorothy and ...more
I thought it interesting that in the foreword Baum says he didn't want this to be violent like the fairytales of the past... and yet, a little girl transports to a strange land, kills the first person she meets, and teams up with three strangers to kill again. They also kill various creatures on their path of destruction.
Perhaps we could savor all the violence but have a much more abridged version with the following:
Wizard of Oz, the short version

Jul 08, 2009 Brad rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Parents
Recommended to Brad by: Gregory Maguire
My disappointment with the children's classics (with the exception of Pinocchio) has continued with The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

It isn't bad. It really isn't, but it is not great either. It's nowhere near great. I wish I could say I was baffled by how this became the worldwide sensation it became, but that would be a lie. On stage and on film, The Wizard of Oz has become THE go-to kids entertainment of the last 80-odd years. It is so pervasive as to be a sort of children's propaganda entertainmen
I had not only watched the well known Wizard of Oz movie with Judy Garland first, but I'd also read the Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, as well as seen the Broadway musical of Wicked, before getting a chance to read this classic. Well, that's not entirely true, when I was young, my grandfather had started to read the book to me and my brother, but unfortunately we never finished it before my brother and I grew too old to be patient while someone read to us. At any ra ...more
MJ Nicholls
Dorothy is actually a dumpy, doughy backwater farmgirl in this book. She would have grown into a stout, strong-limbed muscular farmers’ wife with no time for things like affection or intercourse, but a damn good head for cornshuckin’ at 99 degrees in the hawt Kansassy summer. So the well-worn epithet ‘no place like home’ is of course a vicious ironic phrase meaning ‘shit, you’d better get outta that backwater Kansas wheat paddy before stupidity, indolence, routine, depression and phenobarbital a ...more
ஐ Briansgirl (Book Sale Queen)ஐ
A Populist Parable: When I opened my old used copy of this book, an aged newspaper clipping fell out of the back of it. As best as I can tell its from an old Sarpy County (Omaha World Herald?) Nebraska newspaper, and it was written by Peter Dreier. Here's what he said:

Whether they are fans of Judy Garland and "Over the Rainbow" or prefer the current $20million black film with Diana Ross and "No Bad News," almost all Americans know the characters from "The Wizard of Oz." But few are aware that t
Ok, let me first get something off my chest.....a GR related rant if you will. When people put up new editions of the book they have read, is it too much of a difficulty to check to make sure the edition is not already there.....on the back of my trawl through this book's place here on the website, it self evidently is too difficult.

My edition is a lovely hard cover version with Biro illustrations and colour plates from 1965 but in my looking for it through the Lord alone knows how many edition
Unfortunately I couldn't find the edition I have. This is due in large part to the fact that many of my books were once my parents and grandparents (I have the entire Nancy Drew collection from the 50's).

The Wizard of Oz series changed my life immensley. In second grade I was Dorothy for Halloween. However, everyone was confused by my silver shoes. Way to be, MGM! In sixth grade I dressed up as Ozma of Oz in a giant green ballgown and poppies in my hair. Everyone thought I was Frida Kahlo. Weak.
Feb 02, 2012 Jason rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Children's fantasy peeps
Recommended to Jason by: Eddie & Susannah Dean/Jake Chambers
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
David Sarkies
Aug 24, 2014 David Sarkies rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anybody and Everybody
Recommended to David by: Wicked
Shelves: fantasy
The original story behind Judy Garland's famous film
20 March 2014

Many people have been talking about the 'great American novel' and I think I have found it in this wonderful little book about the wonderful wizard of Oz. Unfortunately this book has drifted into the mists of the unknown thanks very much to Hollywood and the exploits of Judy Garland.

Judy Garland at Dorothy

In fact whenever we think of the Wizard of Oz this immediately comes to mind:

We're off to see the wizard

However the main reason that I decided that I would try to get my hands o
What a fantastic read! I read this book during my first week of Christmas vacation while I sick and puking from stomach flu. Dorothy is so smart. I love that L. Frank Baum didn't make her some doofy little girl (like Stephanie Meyers did with Bella in Twilight - Steph, read Wizard of Oz and smarten up your girls!). Such a good book. I love how strong and capable all the characters were and yet they let little things make them self-concious. But then when needed their powers came out. The Tin Woo ...more
I first read the The Wonderful Wizard of Oz back in 5th grade (or so). At the time, I remember how I was surprised that the story was different, darker and more violent than the great movie. Looking back, I’m not sure I still believe that. Perhaps it was all the head chopping, but looking at it now, the violence is bloodless, cartoon like. Baum, in his introduction to the book, says that he was trying to get away from the traditional fairy tale, and tell a newer “wonder tale.” Something, reading ...more
Shocking though it is I never read any of the Wizard of Oz books. I of course saw the movie when I was a kid and absolutely adored it. I also played the voice of Oz, one of the munchkins, and one of the crows who was harassing the Scarecrow in elementary school. I wonder if my parents ever knew about the contents of these books since I had a ton of books growing up but nothing from the Oz series.

L. Frank Baum begins the story with a foreword discussing how he wrote The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in
I don't know how I managed to make it out of childhood without reading this, especially because I've always loved the movie. But I finally got it out of the library this year and was surprised to learn that the Wicked Witch, whose reputation and stature have really improved lately thanks to Wicked, is barely in it.

Far from the looming threat she presents throughout the movie, the witch is introduced and killed off in a single chapter. Which fits the pattern -- this is a very episodic story, with
Ben Loory
i've never really been a big fan of the movie-- it never really made much sense to me. but the book is a whole different story; everything is wonderfully clear, almost mathematically precise, all the set-ups and pay-offs and watching how the characters interact with and work upon each other-- it's kind of marvelous, actually. drags a little bit as you approach the end, but that might just be because you know where it's going. also i enjoyed all the "gray" bits at the beginning, which reminded me ...more
Jun 20, 2014 David rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: little girls with silver (not ruby!) slippers, great and powerful humbugs
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Probably many more people have seen the famous Judy Garland movie than have read the book. I listened to this classic because it was an Audible download, and the narration by Anne Hathaway made it particularly delightful.

L. Frank Baum wanted to create a new and original fairy tale that had all the magic and meaning of traditional fairy tales. Expecting this 100+ year-old children's book to be a childish product of its time, I was surprised that it really does hold up as the classic it is, with d
There's this kickass iphone app called 'Stanza' where you can upload a bunch of books to your phone...for free! When I first downloaded the app I didn't realize how it worked and only found two free titles: Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz." Goodreads David had recently (and marvelously) reviewed Oz, thus inspiring me to choo-choo-choose It. (I've since found an assload of other free books available for download to your phone, including ...more
I wanted to read this book to see how different it is from the film version (a staple of every American childhood). It is very different, but then again, I expected Hollywood to take a piece (or in this case, several pieces) of literature and manipulate it into something completely different and commercial, but commercial in a good way. I love the film. I like the book. Some surprises (spoiler alert): Dorothy was actually a small child in the book. The slippers were not made from rubies. The Tin ...more
This book was fun, a lot different from the movie. The storyline was the same but there was a lot more in each version that the other didn’t contain. The biggest thing that kind of took me aback was when the tin man started chopping heads off. It was an action adventure and each character played a part. It was great! Highly recommended. I look forward to more of Frank Baum.
K.D. Absolutely
This is a timeless classic! I saw the movie when I was already an adult but I've been hearing the music since I was a kid. Seeing the movie for the first time was very engaging and it made me interested to read the book. The narration was straightforward and there are many lessons that kids and adults alike can learn from it. I will keep this book so that my daughter and her kids can also read them someday.
Feb 22, 2013 El is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Currently reading this to my boyfriend at night before bed because he had a ridiculously pathetic childhood and is scared of things.
J Cravens
Dec 05, 2008 J Cravens rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who loves the movie, or to children
Shelves: fiction
I've been on a quest for several years now to read old fiction books, particularly (but not exclusively) American and British novels, that have been around for so long and are so famous that no one reads them anymore, because they've been made into movies or TV mini-series (often many times over), or because they've entered into our pop culture references so frequently that people *think* they know them without having to actually read them. They don't have to be great novels -- just really, real ...more
 ᴍɪᴄs *ᴀᴍᴀɴᴛᴇ  ᴅᴇ ʟᴏs sᴘᴏɪʟᴇʀs*
Leído para el 2015 reading challenge #23 Un libro con más de 100 años

En parte me siento como una niña a la que le acaban de decir que Papá Noel no es real.

Así que el Gran Oz es (view spoiler)pero que decepción. ¡Hasta mi hermanita se decepcionó (tiene 7 años) cuando le conté quién era Oz en realidad!.
Tenía un vago recuerdo de haber visto la película una de las tantas versiones animadas en la escuela aunque no sé si era esta o "El gat
It is fun to read such a children’s novel; it is amusing and hilarious. If I were young, I would be very keen on it. I would be fascinated by the magical fantasy; I would be in awe with the out-of-this-world scenes and entities- things far from the reality since I were such a babe in the woods, for my brains were not big enough to understand or be cynical about them. I would just believe whatever I read and imagine. Also, I would talk, for sure, about it with my friends. Alas! I did not get a ch ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
  • Five Children and It (Five Children, #1)
  • Peter Pan
  • Kabumpo in Oz (Oz, #16)
  • The Dragons of Blueland (My Father's Dragon, #3)
  • Pinocchio
  • Moominsummer Madness (The Moomins, #5)
  • Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: A Pop-Up Adaptation
  • The Annotated Alice: The Definitive Edition
  • The Cricket in Times Square
  • Mary Poppins Opens the Door (Mary Poppins, #3)
  • The Night of Wishes
  • The Nutcracker
  • Dolphin Treasure
  • Knight's Castle (Tales of Magic, #2)
  • Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Andersen
  • The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle (Doctor Dolittle, #2)
also wrote under the name Edith Van Dyne, Floyd Akers

Lyman Frank Baum was an American author, actor, and independent filmmaker best known as the creator, along with illustrator W. W. Denslow, of one of the most popular books in American children's literature, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, better known today as simply The Wizard of Oz. He wrote thirteen sequels, nine other fantasy novels, and a pleth
More about L. Frank Baum...

Other Books in the Series

Oz (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • The Marvelous Land of Oz (Oz, #2)
  • Ozma of Oz (Oz, #3)
  • Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz (Oz, #4)
  • The Road to Oz (Oz, #5)
  • The Emerald City of Oz (Oz, #6)
  • The Patchwork Girl of Oz (Oz, #7)
  • Tik-Tok of Oz (Oz, #8)
  • The Scarecrow of Oz (Oz, #9)
  • Rinkitink in Oz (Oz, #10)
  • The Lost Princess of Oz (Oz, #11)
Ozma of Oz (Oz, #3) The Marvelous Land of Oz (Oz, #2) The Road to Oz (Oz, #5) Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz (Oz, #4) The Emerald City of Oz (Oz, #6)

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