Reviewed by: Sylvia Shults, Circulation Assistant
Suggested Age: Teen (although adults will like it, too)
What is the book about?: Amy Gumm, a girl from Kansas, gets swept away by a tornado to the Land of Oz … a land where Dorothy Gale is in charge. And things aren’t all Technicolor here. Dorothy is a crazed, power-hungry despot intent on stealing all of Oz’s magic. The Scarecrow is a mad scientist who tinkers in deeply unnatural ways with his subjects. The Cowardly Lion is a deadly predator. Good witches are poisonously evil, bad witches are … perhaps not to be trusted. Amy finds herself allied with the ”bad” witches, drawn into a plot to assassinate Dorothy.
My review: When I was a kid, I was absolutely, utterly addicted to the MGM version of The Wizard of Oz. If VCRs had been around back in the day, I’d have worn a tape of that movie to tissue. A little later in grade school, I read a few of the Oz books by L. Frank Baum. I enjoyed them, but they never had the pull over me that the movie did. They were filled with characters I wasn’t familiar with, and some that were a bit on the scary side. Dorothy Must Die took me back, in a way, to those grade-school readings of the Oz books. The characters are unfamiliar — this is most assuredly NOT the MGM version of the story. The author KNOWS her Oz, though. From the nod to Judy Garland’s birth name in the name of the main character, to the reveal of one of the mysterious characters later on in the book, the author demonstrates an easy familiarity with the background of her utterly original story. Which is what makes Dorothy Must Die so creepily perfect. I was a little nonplussed to get the feeling, at the book’s end, that there was way more to the story. It turns out to be the first in a trilogy, although that’s not stated anywhere on the cover or at the end of the book. The follow-up, The Wicked Will Rise, is scheduled to be released next March.
About FDL Reads
Welcome to FDL Reads, weekly book reviews from Fondulac District Library. Librarians (and possibly some other guest reviewers) review all types of books, from children’s picture books, young adult favorites, to the latest adult thriller, and share their thoughts each Tuesday at fondulaclibrary.org. If the book is owned by Fondulac District Library (or another local library), you’ll see a direct link to the catalog entry and whether or not it is available. If it is checked out or at another local library, you will be able to place a hold as long as you have your library card and PIN numbers. As with any book review, these are our opinions…we disagree amongst ourselves about books frequently. We all have different likes and dislikes, which is what makes the world an interesting place. Please enjoy, and keep on reading!