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Twelve Months of Reading

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Glinda of Oz [Jun. 26th, 2010|06:36 pm]
Twelve Months of Reading


[mood |accomplished]

And so we reach the end of all of the Oz books written by L. Frank Baum.  This was really an interesting experiment in studying not just the foundation of something which has become an incalculable thread in pop cultural knowledge but what feels like a very early attempt at the booming young adult fantasy novel.  I'm glad I did it.

I gave Glinda of Oz 4 stars because it returns to type of adventure and events that occur based on a cause and effect basis (as all good writing should have) rather than "and now we're somewhere wacky with something we have to figure out and will never reference again once we've escaped."

One final political observation: "Everybody here is a dictator of something or other.  They're all office holders.  That's what keeps them contented.  But I'm the Supreme Dictator of all, and I'm elected once a year.  This is a democracy, you know, where the people are allowed to vote for their rulers.  A good many others would like to be Supreme Dictator, but as I made a law that I am always to count the votes myself, I am always elected."

And one final good lesson: "That is all that makes life worth our while -- to do good deeds and to help those less fortunate than ourselves."

There are many simple and happy messages like this throughout the 15 books.  Many adventures, some contrived, some engaging.  But it still seems the most important and powerful message is the one we learned at the end of the first book, namely, "There's no place like home."