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The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

(Oz #1)

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3.99  ·  Rating details ·  323,164 ratings  ·  10,843 reviews
When Dorothy and her little dog Toto are caught in a tornado, they and their Kansas farmhouse are suddenly transported to Oz, where Munchkins live, monkeys fly and Wicked Witches rule. Desperate to return home, and with the Wicked Witch of the West on their trail, Dorothy and Toto - together with new friends the Tin Woodsman, Scarecrow and cowardly Lion - embark on a fanta ...more
Paperback, Penguin Popular Classics, 154 pages
Published 1995 by Penguin (first published May 17th 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)
Claire I just finished reading it aloud to my 4 children, ages 11, 8, 5, and 3. We all loved it differently, but equally. There's certainly a reason it is…moreI just finished reading it aloud to my 4 children, ages 11, 8, 5, and 3. We all loved it differently, but equally. There's certainly a reason it is considered a classic and it does not disappoint on any level.(less)
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Hailey (Hailey in Bookland)
Ah such fun! I don't think I'll read the rest of the series but I did really enjoy this.
Luca Ambrosino
Jun 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
ENGLISH (The Wonderful Wizard of Oz) / ITALIANO

Dorothy is a young girl who lives with her aunts in a small farm in Kansas. Due to a tornado, she is catapulted with her house in a freaky village...

Dorothy's journey, which I discovered at 38 thanks to my daughter and to the well-established habit of reading something to her before going to bed, begins in this way. The thing that impressed me most about this wonderful story is that the title "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" is rather misleading. Yes,

...more
David
Jan 06, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Hannah Greendale
Click here to watch a video review of this book on my channel, From Beginning to Bookend.

Dorothy Gale and her little dog Toto are swept away by a tornado from Kansas all the way to the Land of Oz. With a little help from the Witch of the North, Dorothy and Toto set off down a road paved with yellow bricks in search of the City of Emeralds and the Wizard of Oz, a man said to have the power to help Dorothy find her way back to Kansas.

The cyclone had set the house down, very gently - for a cyclone
...more
Riku Sayuj
Sep 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: classics, r-r-rs

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
...more
JV (semi-hiatus)
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is a brief and magical adventure tale filled straightforward prose, predictable plot, and uninteresting protagonists with a penchant for morbidity, self-mutilation, and decapitation while whimsically traipsing along in a bizarre land chock-full of eldritch creatures.

Whirled by a cyclone, Dorothy, an innocent, harmless little girl, and Toto, her adorable dog, are whisked away in a peculiar land. From there, they tag along with eccentric beings and eventually meet the s
...more
Zoë
Feb 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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,
...more
Brina
Nov 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, kids
To Oz? To Oz! The film version of The Wizard of Oz is such an important part of American history that I most likely had it memorized by the time I was eight years old. Between the music, images changing from black and white to color, and the defeat of a wicked witch, the movie was simply magical. Being a tomboy, however, my reading interests as a child were never inclined toward classic books such as Little Women and, of course, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Having my interest piqued by the yearly ...more
Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
This is one of the most bizarre books I've ever read.

The fantasy elements are all rather ordinary. There’s a secret world beyond that of our own; this is a standard trope of the genre. C.S Lewis would soon follow suit and inspire later generations. But the point is the Land of Oz is just weird.

Seems like a bland criticism, though the entire point of the plot is to have good triumph over evil. But what is evil? Beyond the actual name of the antagonist, the Wicked Witch of the West, we don’t act
...more
Henry Avila
Aug 06, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dorothy, (from Kansas, wherever 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 , her dog ...more
Mischenko
Nov 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My 8-year-old decided she wanted to read this one and we just finished buddy reading two different copies. The copy she’s reading is a new Scholastic version which is just a simple paperback with an adorable cover. I went ahead and picked up this 100th anniversary edition for our home library because it’s illustrated, large print, and hardcover which I love.



I’m sure most of you already know the story. The beginning opens with a cyclone that carries Dorothy’s house–along with her and her little
...more
Evgeny
Aug 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
Some books are so well-known practically every person who has even a very brief knowledge of general literature knows that these books are about. In the light of this I really have no clue why I would bother to outline the plot of this one, but just in case somebody managed to miss it here goes. A little girl is transported into a magical land where she meets all kinds of magical creatures. She goes to visit the greatest wizard of the land hoping he would help her to get home.

I want to get some
...more
Richard
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
...more
Lisa
"There is no place like Oz!"

Most people are at some point facing the situation that something throws them off track. The reason might not be that a tornado catches your house and dumps it later in a strange land - on a wicked witch - but something quite similar in intensity might well happen to any of you. You will find yourselves lost, helpless, sad and without orientation in a strange place. What can you do? The first rule for Oz travellers is to stick together even if your worries and needs
...more
Jason Koivu
Sep 02, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, fantasy
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.

description

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.

description

The book an
...more
Katie
Dec 21, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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

Manny
- Good morning HAL.

- GOOD MORNING MANNY. WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO TALK ABOUT TODAY?

- I thought we would talk about film and literature.

- THAT'S FINE WITH ME.

- Excellent. Okay, let's start with something easy. Do you know why I call you HAL?

- IT IS A REFERENCE TO 2001, THE FAMOUS FILM BY STANLEY KUBRICK.

- Very good, HAL!

- THANK YOU.

- Alright, let's move on to a harder topic. Do you have a favorite book?

- YES.

- And what is it, HAL?

- IT IS THE WIZARD OF OZ.

- Do you think you understand it, HAL?

- DO Y
...more
Calista
This is one of those rare books where the movie is ACTUALLY BETTER than the book. I did read this years ago and I did enjoy it, but the movie tops it. Still all the magic is here at the beginning.
Mohsin Maqbool
May 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
description
An innovative cover of Frank L. Baum's book.

MOST of us have read L. Frank Baum's "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" and have enjoyed it. Many of us have also seen the 1939 film "The Wizard of Oz" which has been adapted from the book. So I am not going to write a review of the book or provide you any details about Dorothy, her pet dog Toto or any of her friends -- The Scarecrow, The Tin Woodman and The Cowardly Lion. I will just recount to you an incident from my schoolboy days which has great relevanc
...more
Brad
May 18, 2009 rated it it was ok
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
...more
Olivier Delaye
Jun 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing
First Fantasy YA to ever see the light of day? Nope.

Flawless piece of literature? Nope. But then again is there even such a thing as a flawless book?

Thought-provoking? Nope. Well, not anymore. Maybe when it came out it was. Probably.

Groundbreaking? Yeah, kinda. In its own way.

Simplistic prose and tropes? Sure, love it! Just as much as I love hard, complicated and even purple prose and seen-before tropes. Just because you've read the same trope time and time again doesn't make it suddenly horribl
...more
Mary Deacon
Oct 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
After reading The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, I was pleasantly surprised. Baum's writing is elementary making it accessible to all age groups. After realizing this, I realized how the book became a classic. The innocent writing didn't take away from the story at all, though. I found that the plot of Dorothy traveling through Oz, trying to return to Kansas, was far more intricate than in the film adaptation. The story was much more fantasy based, as well. The whimsical details created an account so m ...more
Leo .
Nov 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jess ❈Harbinger of Blood-Soaked Rainbows❈
I am determined to find the brilliance in Wicked so I've decided that sometimes, going to the root of the problem will bring clarity and perspective. I read this when I was very young and don't remember it. I really think I won't be able to understand Wicked until I re-read the original tale. So here goes...

Review 4/3/15

Read a book that was made into a movie

I think everyone has seen the movie or the musical or both, so unless you've been living under a rock or in an apocalyptic shelter for the p
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz = The Wizard of Oz (Oz #1), L. Frank Baum
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is an American children's novel written by author L. Frank Baum and illustrated by W. W. Denslow, originally published by the George M. Hill Company in Chicago on May 17, 1900. It has since been reprinted on numerous occasions, most often under the title The Wizard of Oz, which is the title of the popular 1902 Broadway musical adaptation as well as the iconic 1939 musical film adaptation.
The story ch
...more
Melki
One of my earliest childhood memories involves my grandparents, aunt, uncle and some of my cousins coming to my house one evening to watch The Wizard of Oz. Why the big to-do? My dad's college professor salary had allowed us to own the only color television in the family. I remember the oohs and ahs exhaled by my relatives (and me) when Dorothy first stepped out of her gray world into the brilliant, Technicolor land of Oz! And, how my cousin Roxy fell asleep before the intrepid gang made it into ...more
Jo
Mar 23, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
For the time this book was written, it was a different and probably a rather wonderful book to get your hands on. For me though, re-reading this as an adult, I didn't find "The wizard of Oz" very wonderful at all. Normally I prefer the book to the film adaptations, but for this, the film was better. The film brought the book to life, and frankly, improved the entire experience.

However, the book and the film are different. There are so many unnecessary and weird encounters in the book, such as,
...more
Trish
Apr 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of THE classics in children's literature, telling the story of little Dorothy who, along with her little black dog Toto, gets swept up by a whirlwind and transported to a mysterious and magical land called Oz. There, after an unforeseen lucky coincidence gives her quite the advantage, she encounters a scarecrow, a tin man and a lion who are all three looking for something important. Thus, the four team up and travel to the famous ruler known as the wizard to get their wishes granted, which i ...more
Ginger
Mar 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, 2019
Winkies and munchkins and quadlings, oh my!

L. Frank Baum wrote The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in 1900. Did they have acid during this time? Good grief, I felt like I was in a psychedelic trip while listening to this book.
What an imagination this guy had!

The book of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is different in many ways than the movie. It still has the same premise but it’s more detailed and lovely. In fact, I was blown away that the "ruby red" shoes were not red at all. o.O

I really enjoyed listening
...more
Paul Bryant
Oct 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
I have read that this story is an allegory, where some things are not what they say they are, like in the Bible and old stories in general. So The Yellow Brick Road is actually the Gold Standard, Oz is supposed to be the Federal Bank and that is why it is a fraud, and the Wicked Witches are the people who supported the demonetization of silver in 1873. I think that the Cowardly Lion is either Orson Wells or Bill Clinton and the Tin Man is Henry Ford or Spiro Agnew. But there are other themes I s ...more
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1,949 followers
also wrote under the name Edith Van Dyne, Floyd Akers, Schuyler Stanton, John Estes Cooke, Suzanne Metcalf, Laura Bancroft

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
...more

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
  • Tik-Tok of Oz (Oz, #8)
  • The Scarecrow of Oz (Oz, #9)
  • Rinkitink in Oz (Oz, #10)
  • The Lost Princess of Oz (Oz, #11)
“There is no place like home.” 3095 likes
“I think you are wrong to want a heart. It makes most people unhappy. If you only knew it, you are in luck not to have a heart.” 1142 likes
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