Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

When a tornado picks  up her trailer home and deposits Amy Gumm in Oz, she can't believe it.  But this Oz is different than the one in the stories. Oz has become a dark and desolate place and it's all because of Dorothy. Now it's up to Amy trained by the Order of the Wicked to stop Dorothy from mining all the magic out of Oz and put an end to her cruelty. Because if one thing is for certain, Dorothy must die.
"Let this be a lesson to all of you," she said quietly, although her voice carried through the throne room. "This is where revolution will get you. In Dorothy's Oz, there is no room for the Wicked."
But then the Lion slunk through my field of vision - licking his chops and eyeing me, because apparently patrolling the outskirts and creeping people out was his preferred party activity-
I love a good retelling and/or fractured fairy tale and this is certainly no exception. While I've always enjoyed the Wizard of Oz, it is not one of my fairy tale obsessions. Still I thought I could get on board with an evil Dorothy and nightmarish Oz and I was right. It was definitely worth the read. It was a bit more violent than I expected and the dialogue needed a little more polish in places (the way some of the characters spoke was didn't gibe with me a few times) but I still really loved it. It seems to be mostly pulled from the books but I suspect a few elements of the movie sneaked in. Certainly Dorothy's red shoes are a nod to the movie.

Amy is a sort of the anti-Dorothy. She is a nice girl who had a rough upbringing but still wants to do the right thing and take of business. When she is brought to Oz by the tornado she can't believe it but she carries right on because she doesn't know how to do anything else. What she finds there is nothing like the movie portrayed as she finds that all of Dorothy's sidekicks have been turned into nightmare versions of themselves. The Scarecrow is an evil scientist, the Tin Man is made of sharp things and has no problem torturing people, and the Lion is a grotesque massive fear-eating beast. And Dorothy herself is power hungry and vindictive. But what happened to them? The book only touches on that at the end. It is a trilogy after all and so Amy isn't given her real task till then. Bits and pieces of the how the characters wound up like they did are thrown in.

But it's the prequel novella No Place Like Oz that provided some insight into what happened to Dorothy and I'm glad I read it. I bought it after I read the book and then reread the book after I read the novella. It explains a few things about Dorothy and how she came back to Oz and why Oz is the way it is when Amy arrives. Now I have a few more suspicions to go on for how the trilogy is going to play out.


  1. My library hold of this just came in, picking it up tomorrow :)

  2. Sounds very imaginative. I've read a few reviews of this (all good), but I didn't realize it was the 1st book in a trilogy. Thanks for the review!


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