August 11, 2015

Review: Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

Title: Dorothy Must Die
Author: Danielle Paige
Published: April 1, 2014
Publisher: HarperCollins

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I didn't ask for any of this. I didn't ask to be some kind of hero. But when your whole life gets swept up by a tornado - taking you with it - you have no choice but to go along, you know? Sure, I've read the books. I've seen the movies. I know the song about the rainbow and the happy little bluebirds. But I never expected Oz to look like this. To be a place where Good Witches can't be trusted, Wicked Witches may just be the good guys, and winged monkeys can be executed for acts of rebellion. There's still a yellow brick road - but even that's crumbling. Dorothy. They say she found a way to come back to Oz. They say she seized power and the power went to her head. And now no one is safe. My name is Amy Gumm - and I'm the other girl from Kansas.I've been recruited by the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked. I've been trained to fight. And I have a mission.

I have such horribly mixed emotions about this book. It's a bit younger than I'd normally like to read (it's meant for grades 9+), but I picked it up because while I hate most re-tellings, I LOVE the Wizard of Oz. I don't know, there's just something about the magic, the witches, the battle between good and evil that always gets me. That being said, I'm back to my mixed emotions. There were good, bad, and great parts to this story. Where shall I begin?

The good: About 70% of the way through, I was officially hooked into the story. I guess that's kind of a bad thing too, huh? I wish I could've gotten into it sooner, but it was very predictable and a bit cliche and too much like every other YA book I've ever read. BUT, once I was hooked into the story line, I was thrilled to be there. There was such great creativity and imagination and descriptive story-telling that had been non-existent until then. So, if you can swing it, keep reading, it gets better, I promise!

The bad: oh, the bad. Besides some of what I mentioned before, the writing style just did not help. I hate to speak poorly of an author's personal writing style, but this one just didn't do anything for me. I know that this is a YA book, but it felt overly simplified. I wish there had been more depth, more complexity, more emotion. It was all just on the surface of the story, and I just feel like there could have been so much more.

The great: The magic. Danielle Paige does a great job of inventing these elements of magic and sorcery you have never seen before. She has also reinvented the way you would traditionally think of the scarecrow, tinman, and cowardly lion using this magic. It's everywhere -- in Dorothy's shoes, in the fighting, even in munchkin tattoos. I really enjoyed the magic in the story and actually wished for more.

Have you read Dorothy Must Die? What'd you think? Let me know!!

1 comment:

  1. Wow, definitely conflicting thoughts on this book. 70% is pretty far in to be hooked – I don't know if I would last that long, especially if I didn't like the writing style. Sometimes simple works but books definitely need emotion, even if the writing isn't that complex. I'm glad to hear you liked the magic aspect of Dorothy Must Die though :) I've got a copy already so I'll probably still give this one a go. Great review!

    Zareena @ The Slanted Bookshelf


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