The Magic of Oz (Oz, #13)
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The Magic of Oz (Oz #13)

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3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  3,130 ratings  ·  70 reviews
A young citizen of Oz who learns an important magic word falls prey to the wickedness of the Nomes' ex-king who wants to destroy Dorothy, the Wizard, and Princess Ozma.
Mass Market Paperback, 234 pages
Published January 12th 1981 by Del Rey (first published 1919)
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Shoshana
This is a good classic Oz story. There is some wandering around, an overarching (though ludicrously unimportant) goal (really? you wrote a whole book about looking for birthday presents for Ozma?), my favorite villain (Ruggedo all the way! although I really enjoy Kaliko's three trial rooms in Rinkitink), jungle animals, and a really really cool plant. Plus more of the Glass Cat! (Although, as I remembered, her pink brains are back; Baum seems to have [conveniently?] forgotten that he had the Wiz...more
Allison
Ruggedo makes another appearance in this story, as do Cap'n Bill, Trot, and the Glass Cat. Young Kiki Aru is an interesting character--early in the book he says "I didn't know I was being wicked, but if I was, I'm glad of it. I hate good people. I've always wanted to be wicked, but I didn't know how." Yikes. He is eerily emotionally detatched from his role in Ruggedo's plans to take over Oz, though he agrees to them without much persuasion. He has great power with his knowledge of the unpronounc...more
Danns
While ferreting out the order of the books I happened upon the fact that this was one of the darker books of the Oz series, and I must agree. Now granted, darker is a bit subjective here, and it's not "King" or "Barker" dark, but for a children's book, it can get a somewhat grim. The story starts off with Kiki Aru stealing away some magical secrets put to rest by his family and using his new found transformation magic to run off and explore the world. He meets up with Rugedo the former gnome kin...more
Grace
I was obsessed with all things Oz while I was growing up.
I wasn't allowed to watch the film for years, so in the meantime I wrote stories about what I thought Oz would be like.
Finally I watched the film at age seven, and then I also read the first book.
The book is very, very different from the film!
After reading the first book, I would scour the Borders shelves for more Oz books. I was fascinated by how many there were!
Usually fiction depressed me, because often there is only one story and it do...more
Julia Brumfield
The Kindle Oz books and I am sure some of the re-makes that are done without pictures are definitely doing these books injustice. The cute and whimsical pictures that adorn the Oz books can of course sometimes be found online but it just isn't the same at all when you have to read something then look it up online but to find the actual Oz originals without costing an arm and a leg is going to be close to impossible.

This was perhaps one of the rougher books for me to get into for every time I t...more
Krys

Here's another blue book down, this one coming from L. Frank Baum. For the record, I love the Oz series. The Magic of Oz, however... not my favourite. It was okay, but I grew weary. Here goes.

The Oz-ian citizens are preparing the celebration of Princess Ozma's birthday, and everyone is scrambling to get something for her that she does not already have. Meanwhile, in another part of Oz a boy named Kiki Aru has learned a magic word that gives him the power to hold sway over Oz and has hooked up wi...more
Eric
This is my second book of the Oz series. My first was the original "Wizard Of Oz", while this book was apparently published shortly after Mr. Baum's death. There were still two other books of his published posthumously and many others in the series.

Just like the first book, it is very enjoyable and easy reading and I feel compelled to use the words "enchanting" and "delightful" in describing it. It is obviously a study of human nature with a young wizard deciding he likes being evil along with a...more
Tamra
I've always wanted to read an Oz book, so when I saw this at the library, I had to check it out.

It's fun. In the early chapters of the book, I was unconvinced. The world is bizarre. Even more bizarre than the movie, but that may just be how it comes across in book form. Anyway, it doesn't matter, because by the end of the book I was completely sold and ready to live in Oz myself. (And, seriously, I need a Glass Cat.)

According to the Afterward in the edition I had, this was one of Frank's last O...more
Scoats
It's interesting that the two Baum books that I own are The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, which is the first Oz book, and this one, which is one of the last.

Many characters that I never heard of (the Tin Solder, Tick Tock, The Glass Cat, The Pink Kitten, Trot, The Wooden Saw Horse and more) were introduced in the books in between that make an appearance here. This isn't a real issue but is a little like when they have all the Dr. Who's in a special episode. It tends to clutter up the action.

Overall t...more
Jason Pettus
(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [cclapcenter.com:]. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted here illegally. This review covers all 14 of the Baum Oz books, which is why it's found on all 14 book pages here.)

I think it's fairly safe by now to assume that nearly everyone in Western society is familiar with The Wizard of Oz, most of us because of the classic 1939 movie adaptation; and many realize as well tha...more
Susan
Sure, this comes with disclaimers. It might only barely be a four. It was kind of all over the place. Even so. I really kind of liked this one. I tend to like the Oz books where I feel like I can kind of make out the underpinnings of fairy tale conventions. Baum gets away from these more and more with the later books, and it was kind of nice getting a glimpse of this again.

It's Ozma's birthday and many of our usual crew scatter to track down the perfect present, and predictably land in hot water...more
Theresa
It's Ozma's birthday and everyone is trying to find her a grand present. Which leads to Trot and Cap'n Bill being stuck on an island and the Glass Cat has to go and bring someone to rescue them.

Also the Nome King is back and still evil and twists around the thoughts of a young boy and they try to take over Oz. By transformation? That doesn't work out very well for them.

Dorothy manages to get mixed up accidentally in all of it and manages to save the day. I think if I were twelve years old I woul...more
Victoria (SevenLeagueBooks)
This is, for the most part, a fairly tame story, the only exception being the plot to conquer Oz cooked up by a Munchkin/Hyup boy called Kiki Aru and Ruggedo, the former nome king. I actually liked that there were relatively few new characters, and that the story took place mostly within the border of Oz. It was a quiet book in that way, just familiar faces getting themselves into danger for the sake of their friend Ozma.
Rrain
Up into about halfway through the book, maybe even two thirds of the way, I thought this was going to be my favourite in the series since the first. The structure was tight and the plot seemed to be going places. But then the climax came too soon and fizzled out and the rest was just sort of a pleasant stroll across the finish line.
Michael Tildsley
4.5 Stars

I think this has to be one of my favorite Oz books, despite the fact that the premise for getting the heroes away from the Emerald City is finding Ozma a birthday present. The reappearance of the Nome King was fantastic. I really liked the descriptive beginning that this book has as compared to some of Baum's other works. It felt like he was really in stride, and you could see where he wanted to go as a writer in places.

I have to take half a star away because of the rushed feeling to th...more
J.J. Lair
Very fascinating book. We meet our old enemy the Nome King and now he has a new ally. This magician knows an old magic word that will transform anything into another creature. They devise a plan to overthrow Oz with this magic. One would think that in such a short book that this plan would happen quickly. Dorothy and the Wizard, two big main characters that you would think could foil this, fall victim to this curse as do many forest creatures.
I really liked how the story unfolded in a short spa...more
Renae
I'd have rated this one higher, but Baum's tendency to plot inconsistencies is starting to bug me.

At the end of The Patchwork Girl of Oz, the Glass Cat ("I've got pink brains--you can see 'em work.") was humbled and given transparent brains and became much more agreeable. I guess those pink, see-'em-work brains grew back. And that conceited personality which was supposedly fixed? Back with a vengeance and a critical plot-driving element in this book.

And transformed creatures can still HEAR, al...more
Shane Grier
This was thirteenth book in the Oz series and the final book completed during Mr. Baum's life. It is also my favorite in the series, so far. This had all the necessary twists and turns a great children's book should have. Of course, all our favorite Oz characters are in peril as are the new (and old) villains. A good one L. Frank left is with.
Nicole Luiken
An Oz book I missed reading as a child. This one has the Nome King as the villain again (this is what, his 4th appearance?) and a magical word that can be used to transform anything.
Anna
Finding Ozma a birthday present was an interesting new idea for the Oz series. Yet the different forking plot points - Trot and Captain Bill, The Nome King and Kiki Aru, and Dorothy and the Wizard - did not really get equal attention. I would have preferred one quest rather than three - it was hard to be sympathetic to three of them.

Baum's imagination does not cease to amaze me (unless it was really the children's ideas that made up the books). The amazing flower plot, the Lonely Duck, and the e...more
Kathryn
Wow. And I thought the first book in this series was an acid-trip. Here's the shortest summary I can think of: an accidental magician-boy meets up with the Gnome King and the two plot to take over Oz with giant soldiers made from monkeys. MEANWHILE, the Wizard of Oz and Dorothy travel with the Glass Cat, the Cowardly Lion, and a Tiger (who's name I can't remember) to the Jungle to convince a tribe of Monkeys to be shrunk to miniature size so they can pop out of the cake at Queen Ozma's birthday...more
Travis
Another of the great Oz books.
Princess Ozma's birthday is coming up. What do you get an immortal, all powerful fairy princess?
Several of the Oz characters, including Dorothy, are having trouble with this one, so several expeditions set out, searching Oz for the perfect birthday gift. One involves monkey's, another a magic tree.
Of course, all the groups run into trouble and once again, the Gnome King shows up just to make this that much more complicated.
Lots of fun and the party scene at the end...more
Jennifer
It feels rather silly to review Oz books--they're mostly just fluff, after all. That said, this one isn't one of my favorites, maybe because the new character introduced, Kiki Aru, is a boy. Baum's boy characters are uniformly either dull or sullen, with the exception of one who's actually a girl in disguise), so following him from one disastrous mistake to another becomes annoying, and it's a relief when he's turned into a hazelnut about 75% of the way through and pretty much forgotten until th...more
Issa
Eh, pretty repetitive.
Jeremy
The thirteenth in the series, I had a tough time rating it. The story was really frustrating at times, with a young man wanting to be wicked for the sake of it, a former Nome King no longer formed, and showing intelligent animals as easily manipulated. But the story felt somewhat like a final story, and I wondered if perhaps Mr. Baum was getting ready for retirement. I kept reading the story, more closely than others, and it kept me interested while I moved from page to page. All in all, a decen...more
Will Waller
This was certainly the best book of the series thus far! Oz is again filled with the sundry characters, but their many quirks seems best on display in this book. The cat is against a prick. Dorothy is annoying. The Wizard is a bit pretentious. Best what makes this book better than the rest is that it has multiple plot lines that takes people in different directions and eventually ties it up together.

I'd recommend this, but not as a start to the series.
Elderberrywine
The last of the Oz books written by Baum himself. I only knock it down a star for the lack of a character the caliber of the Gump or the Sawhorse (my two personal favorites), but I always enjoy the Glass Cat's self-centered appearances, and in this volume, she truly saves the day.

I must add that Oz books without John R, Neill's iconic illustrations are so very Wrong. I absolutely refuse to acknowledge them. *turns up nose a la Glass Cat*
Skedatt
I have never been what you call a fan of the Wizard of Oz. But after we came across a passage that intrigued us in our writing curriculum, we read it as a family at the behest of my eldest. The boys loved it. I found it much better than I expected. I might even read more. (Especially since I had my two older boys clamoring for more.) Apparently there is a reason the Oz books are considered classics. Who knew!
Sara
Hey guess what? Like always, there's mischief afoot in the land of Oz! Magic is happening (again) without Ozma's permission (again)! Shocker!
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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 plethora of other works (55 novels in total, 82 short stor...more
More about L. Frank Baum...
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (Oz, #1) 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)

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“It's a bird of some sort. It's like a duck, only I never saw a duck have so many colors."
The bird swam swiftly and gracefully toward the Magic Isle, and as it drew nearer its gorgeously colored plumage astonished them. The feathers were of many hues of glistening greens and blues and purples, and it had a yellow head with a red plume, and pink, white and violet in its tail.”
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“The Glass Cat is one of the most curious creatures in all Oz. It was made by a famous magician named Dr. Pipt before Ozma had forbidden her subjects to work magic. Dr. Pipt had made the Glass Cat to catch mice, but the Cat refused to catch mice and was considered more curious than useful.
This astonishing cat was made all of glass and was so clear and transparent that you could see through it as easily as through a window. In the top of its head, however, was a mass of delicate pink balls which looked like jewels but were intended for brains. It had a heart made of a blood-red ruby. The eyes were two large emeralds. But, aside from these colors, all the rest of the animal was of clear glass, and it had a spun-glass tail that was really beautiful.”
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