★★★★ 3.5 Stars
Series: Dorothy Must Die
Genre: Dark Fantasy / Retellings
Publication Date: November 12th, 2013
“For everything that’s wonderful, there’s something wicked, too. That’s the price you pay for magic. It’s worth it, I thought. Even here, standing at the mouth of a place that radiated the purest evil I’d ever felt, I knew it would always be worth it. Because without magic, you’re just left with Kansas.”
Dorothy it seems, has become something of an unhinged sociopath…
As of this review, I’ve only seen the film, The Wizard of Oz, and haven’t read any of Baum’s original series. That being said, I’m familiar enough with the story and am always up for a dark take on the classics. I always thought there was something shady about Glinda. Maybe not Dorothy, but Glinda is suspiciously calculating to be the supposed “good” witch. Dorothy Must Die seems to recognize that as well, and runs with it.
I was hesitant about reading the prequel novellas first, because in my experience, young adult writers don’t know how to execute a prequel in a way that doesn’t cause reference vertigo. It’s almost always and very annoyingly I might add, necessary to read the first book to know what the actual hell is going on, and I like that the prequels to this series are both large and developed enough to not need that context. These are full-length novellas, too, rather than a series of disconnected short stories, and that definitely helps.
No Place Like Oz has good writing and is fun. It’s edgy, vicious and strange. And Dorothy, oh, Dorothy is horrible. She’s like Veruca Salt with magic abilities. It’s great. This also reminded me of A.G. Howard’s Splintered in its style, which I am a massive fan of, so that’s a plus. Don’t know how far I’ll continue this series, but I would like to see up to why Dorothy’s gotta die, at least.
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