The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – L Frank Baum

Those of you who have been following my blog for a while know that “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” holds a special place in my heart! First published in May of 1900, the book is celebrating its 115th anniversary.

photo courtesy of history.com
photo courtesy of history.com

The movie adaption was released in 1939, and is a timeless classic, also thought to have been viewed more than any other movie released to date (history.com). I have read the book enough, and watched the movie enough, that yes; I can recite the movie from beginning to end.

photo courtesy of history.com
photo courtesy of history.com

I have read all of the books in the series, but never enjoyed any of the others as much as I love “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.” For a book to be 115 years old, and still read anew by young readers is a testament to the wonderful quality of this story. It really does reach hearts both young and old alike.

Wizard of Oz Books 11-18-2013 020

What-The-Dickens: AKA The Tooth Fairy

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Are You Familiar With Gregory Maguire? Have you read Wicked? If you have, then you’ve read Gregory Maguire. Being a huge Wizard of Oz fan, I have of course enjoyed all of the books in the Wicked Series (Except the last one, I haven’t read that yet). Gregory Maguire has a way of taking common fairy tales that we are all familiar with, or other stories we think we know, and giving them his own unique twist; taking you on a journey you never expected.

Do you like Cinderella? You want to read “Confessions of an Ugly Step-Sister”.

How about Snow White? Then you would love “Mirror, Mirror”. 

“What-the-Dickens” is a story about the tooth-fairy. It revolves around Dinah Ormsby, her older brother Zeke, their 2 year old sister Rebecca Ruth, and their just showed up on their doorstep distant cousin Gage. There isn’t a definite time frame, or year that this book seems to be set in. The back story on the family is the parents disappeared, Gage shows up. On page 5 we read that “the Ormsby’s were trying the experiment of living by gospel standards, and they hoped to be surer of their faith tomorrow than they’d been yesterday”. This is also a family who lives with no cable television, internet service, or visits to the mall.

This isn’t your run-of-the-mill tooth-fairy either. He is what would be called a Skibbereen, or Skibberee. “His arm webs were filmy, nearly transparent, and his skin was suggestible, like water. I suppose his circulation worked on a capillary system; his coloring could shift from pale to dark and many shades in between” (pg. 20). He sounds kind of like a dragon fly to me.

So are you interested? Good. Because I have just started this book, and “What-the-Dickens” (yes, that is his name) seems like he has a lot of trouble coming his way. I can’t wait to share it with you!

My Most Cherised Book

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All of my books are important to me; not only do they give me stories of far-away places and magical things, but they also hold my memories from the first time I opened them, to the 10th time I read a particular story, to the story that brought me through a depressing or sad time of my life. Every book I have opened holds my memories of that story as well as its story itself. I have enough books boxed in my basement to fill a couple bookshelves, with nowhere to put them, yet 🙂

But the book I hold most special, was a gift on my 30th birthday from my sister-in-law. I think the only thing I am a fan of more than Abraham Lincoln is The Wizard of Oz. This story as well as it’s less famous follow-up stories are a huge part of my childhood, and I cherish each of them. So to get an autographed book from Roger S. Baum, great-grandson of L. Frank Baum, literally left me speechless, and in tears. My brother and sister-in-law met Mr. Baum as he was signing books at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

I will apologize for the less-than-stellar pictures, as I did not have the best lighting conditions, but the inscription is as follows:

7/27/2002

Angela

From Machele:

Oz, I’m sure, means different things for different people but, two things are for sure, Oz is love and it is for the young-in-heart. If you remain young-in-heart, the gates to the Emerald City will always remain open for you. There is not any age to the spirit.

Roger S. Baum

Toto too

1st page of autograph
1st page of autograph
2nd page of autograph
2nd page of autograph

How amazing is that? I think my brother would be a little miffed to find out I have not yet read this book, as I cannot bear to bend its spine any more than I have to read further than the inscription. He asked me for about 2 years if I had read it, and I told him I couldn’t bear to bend it, and he just stopped asking me 🙂

If you are a fan of the Oz stories, you must go to http://tototooinc.tateauthor.com/ . Frank S. Baum has 15 different Oz books, and he will autograph them for you. I think I’ve found my Christmas present to myself!