It’s a pretty amazing thing when someone can take a familiar world you understood and flipped it entirely upside down, making you forget what you thought you knew. That’s what happened in today’s review, Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige.
I was super intrigued because who hasn’t watched The Wizard of Oz at some point in their life? You’ve had to have heard the song “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” at least once or know about Munchkin Land. Even though the film is celebrating it’s 75 years since first produced by MGM Studios, the film is beyond classic and more importantly, a world created originally by author L. Frank Baum. Danielle Paige seriously took this world and turned it all crazyland and I absolutely loved it! *Side-note: I was initially reading this in prep for the Oscars this year since they were honoring The Wizard of Oz and I owned both this and the kindle version of Baum’s story and wanted to do a bit of a comparison. I decided in the end that I actually loved the new world Danielle had created so the post won’t be a comparison, just a regular ol’ review, but a fun read nonetheless!*
Dorothy Must Die (Dorothy Must Die #1)
Author: Danielle Paige
Publisher: Harper Teen, HarperCollins
Release Date: April 1, 2014
Pages: 452, Paperback
Received Copy: ARC at ALAMW
The story starts off in present time, main character Amy Gumm comes from a rough background–divorced family in a shambles, drunk mother, trailer park life….in Kansas. After getting a suspension from school and sent home, weather reports warn of a tornado possibly touching down in her area. Deserted by her mom and left with the pet rat, Star, as her only companion, the winds of change arrive and take Amy to a place so foreign, so Oz, so magical…or so she thought.
Amy learns that she indeed has come from the same place as, ahem, Princess, Dorothy originated and after several locals she encounters on the way down the yellow brick road, she discovers she is in a world far from the story she grew up with. Amy gets bound by magic to Mombi, a witch, to be the heroine of the hour and take down Dorothy’s reign because Oz is no longer recognizable. The Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, and the Lion are all completely warped and have taken their gifts from the wizard: heart, brain, courage, and used them for evil…to terrorize the inhabitants of Oz. After spending time and training with the Order who are ready to take down Dorothy and her lackeys, Amy must infiltrate and destroy them: Dorothy Must Die!
Things I liked:
It was so incredible that Danielle created this warped alternate universe with such a magical place. It would be like if someone took Hogwarts and turned it into a school torture chamber. There’s great detail and I never felt confused, I was always as fascinated as Amy had been when she discovered something.
I really enjoyed this good vs wicked. I literally was just as disorientated as Amy about who’s trustworthy and who is not. Amy is a great lead–just your average girl trying to find herself and be who she’s supposed to be. Find her strength, find her courage, herself. The rest of the supporting characters cast is great as well and again they’re always believable because nothing it what it seems.
I love a good, thick book. It’s not too long but not too short! And there’s more–yes, a series to look forward to reading and more excitement is in-store! The cover is also soooooo cool! I just love everything that goes on here–the red, killer font, the famous outfit, just so pretty!
I would catch myself finding quotes from the original movie/book randomly sprinkled in DMD which was fun! “We’re not in Kansas anymore” or “Follow the yellow brick road” and “There’s no place like home”, phrases that you’ve heard relating to the Oz world were great to see throughout the pages.
When April comes around, (release date April 1st) I would definitely say that this is a must-own book! It’s a strange, fun read because it’s the opposite of what you know and can’t wait to read more! Just remember that it’s okay that Dorothy must die because after this, you’ll never think of Oz the same way.