I’ve liked the last couple of Oz books, of course, but with this one Baum is back in the realm of genius. It’s actually my favourite one yet; pretty impressive for the sixth book in any series, let alone a kids’ one, where you’d think most of the wonder comes from the initial ideas and the world being laid out before us.
One of the reasons Baum keeps on surprising is that he continues to broaden the world of Oz, giving us more and more civilizations of more and more interesting people. From the baked goods-based people of Bunbury to the living utensils of Utensia to the assorted members of the Nome King’s evil coalition, determined to invade Oz and destroy the unwonted happiness of its citizens, his inventiveness knows no bounds, nor — often — does his wit.
Also, after struggling financially and finding their farm in danger of repossession, Dorothy’s Uncle Henry and Aunty Em find themselves whisked off to Oz in this one, the family to now settle there permanently, and there is a lovely little moral about work ethic thrown in, because they do not easily adjust to their lives of luxury and need something to keep them occupied.
But more than anything, the attempted invasion of Oz takes centre stage in this book, and it is so much fun!
Woggle-Bug Report: Yes! He is here, and is now a Professor at the College of Art and Athletic Perfection, which he founded. One of his innovations was to introduce school pills to the curriculum, which allow students to literally swallow knowledge — Maths, English, History and the like — in order to spend more time on their artistic and physical education.
It’s basically a cyberpunk concept, but from 1910. Amazing!
TBR DAY 118: The Emerald City of Oz (Oz #6) by L. Frank Baum
GENRE: Children’s Fiction, Classics
TIME ON THE TBR: 3 years.
PURCHASED FROM: Amazon.