C.G. Drews's Reviews > Dorothy Must Die

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle  Paige
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really liked it
bookshelves: read-2015, retelling, young-adult

So basically I procrastinated reading this book FOREVER (because I'm a deluded pineapple) and gosh, it was amazing and perfect and I loved it.. The procrastination and fear it wouldn't live up to the hype were totally UNNEEDED. It's an epic retelling. So, so creepy and dark, which is perfect. I kind of reminded me a little of Splintered. It took a fluffy old fantasy world (Oz) and TOTALLY messed it up. WHICH I JUST LOVE.

Although, to be honest, as I look at the gifs of the original movie, I kiiiinda think it is creepy in a way too. I mean, come on? Tell me this isn't sort of terrifying:
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ANYWAY. Let's move on, shall we?!

Basically the book is about a girl, Amy Gumm, who gets sucked into a tornado and tossed into Oz...after Dorothy. It's like the "then what happened story" of Oz. So wipe the idea of Dorothy returning home with her mini mutt. This story takes off with Dorothy being a sadistic ruler (with an affinity for the colour pink and glitter and fluffiness [which is terrifying]) of Oz. The Tinman and Lion and Scarecrow are all FREAKY. They torture people and do experiments and are just general not okay. Dorothy is a magic addict. She doesn't let anyone preform magic, because she wants it all. Glinda is psychotic. And everyone goes around with these botox like smiles.

Mostly the amount of fluffiness and pink in Dorothy's life, as she ordered people's deaths and what not, was what disturbed me.
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I love me a good retelling...and this is definitely a good one. It was close enough to the original (well, it was set in Oz, after all) that I could see all the references. I felt like I was returning to a childhood story! AND it just turned everything from golden and shiny to dark, mysterious and creepy. LOOOOOVE IT. Good is bad and bad is good, how fantastic. (Although, to be honest, I think everyone was kind of bad?)

Amy Gumm is also fantastic. She's a bit sassy and has foot-in-mouth, in that, she busts out with these caustic remarks that get her into a lot of trouble. I think she accepted the reality of Oz pretty fast, but, eh, we all have our daydreams, I guess. And I wondered about the fact that she never seemed to miss home or struggle with the scenery/reality change. But she was still fantastic and I loved reading from her POV.
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The romance? Um...what romance?! It literally has like 3% romantic intentions. This didn't bother me AT ALL, except, towards the end, it kind of fished a relationship between Nox and Amy out of thin air. NO NO NO. It's okay to have a YA book without romance! IT IS. Forcing one in that doesn't fit just ruins things. I didn't ship anyone. It was all kind of weird and I felt zero chemistry between Nox/Amy. (view spoiler)

The plot was definitely interesting...if a little laggy in the middle. We had to pause everything for a bout of magical training. *yawns* I was so not feeling it. I really think the book could've been SHORTER. Cut some of the laggy middle and exploration of Oz would've been more interesting to me.

All in all, IT WAS PRETTY DARN FANTASTIC. It wasn't terrifying, but it was dark. And the sass was golden. AND ALSO FLYING MONKEYS. It was awesome to have fairly important non-human characters!! I LOVE FLYING MONKEYS.
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YES I WOULD LIKE TO READ THE SEQUEL ASAP.

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Reading Progress

January 12, 2014 – Shelved
January 12, 2014 – Shelved as: to-read
April 6, 2015 – Started Reading
April 6, 2015 –
page 200
44.25% "This is so FABULOUS. Oz is freaking terrifying."
April 7, 2015 – Shelved as: read-2015
April 7, 2015 – Shelved as: retelling
April 7, 2015 – Shelved as: young-adult
April 7, 2015 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-6 of 6 (6 new)

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Joyce That book is creepily awesome. Hands down.


message 2: by Elizabeth (new) - added it

Elizabeth Chesak Ooh! I'm actually really happy/surprised to hear that you liked it, because I generally trust your bookish opinions and... IDK, I haven't heard very good things about this book from other people. But I do love retellings, so I may just have to try this one! :)


message 3: by C.G. (last edited Apr 07, 2015 08:04PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

C.G. Drews @Joyce: YES I TOTALLY AGREE.

@Nevillegirl: Omg. *flails* I'm glad you trust my opinion *sweats under pressure* And I've heard so many meh things about it to, which is why I procrastinated starting it for SOOO long. But I was really happy!!

@Aimee: Not every book is for everyone though, right?! IT'S OKAY YOU DIDN'T LIKE IT. We'll just flail mutually over How to Lead a Life of Crime. ;-)


message 4: by SJ (new) - rated it 3 stars

SJ Love your review! I'd want to read this book based on what you say haha :D It sounds really good in hindsight. I just remember while I was reading it... like, there were aspects I LOVED, but the boring bits, and the romance pulled from thin air, and Amy Gumm.... I just couldn't do it!

I do remember really liking how creepy Dorothy got tho. Gosh golly she took a turn towards the macabre.


C.G. Drews @SJ: I didn't think it was perfect, don't worry, hehe. :P BUT YESSS. I just really love retellings turned creeptastic. And I loved Petey.


Kate I just finished this book and I loved it! But I'm with you on the amy/nox situation. I mean maybe it could develop but... no thanks.


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