Book: Out of Oz


Yes, the final volume in the wicked years from Gregory Maguire.

Before I review this book, let me confess that I am a HUGE FAN of Gregory Maguire. I absolutely love how he takes our favourite fairy tales and makes them something new! So yes, this review IS going to be biased. With that out-of-the-way, let me start with what I didn’t like about the book.

The main character Rain didn’t capture me the way her predecessors did. Then again, she’s up against the likes of Elphaba and Liir. Even then, the supporting characters seemed so much MORE, more interesting with the secrets they keep, with the experiences they’ve been through, with the choices they make. Rain was lacking in some way, perhaps because she was so young when we first met her, but she was different. So different that I couldn’t connect with her at all. Thank goodness the story was told from a number of people’s perspectives. And the story was good.

Maguire brings in characters from all the books, some are old favourites, and some that were only mentioned in passing. He ties up many loose ends, and introduces so many more possibilities. Without giving too much away, I would say that the ending was a surprise. At the same time Maguire introduces new ideas and plot lines that could bring forth a fifth book. However, Out of Oz is the final volume of the Wicked years. What that means and what the coda seems to imply is up for interpretation.

Who knows what the future will bring? As long as Gregory Maguire keeps writing, I think he will continue to capture the imagination of many.

It would be lovely if the series were made into a movie, the Wicked musical is SO tame and the books speak so much more about what is good and what is evil. Even though set in the beloved fictional land of Oz, the issues brought up are current and relevant. The choices each of the characters make, the reasons for those choices and the secrets they keep all reflect the choices we have, the reasons we give and the silence we bear.

Books are a Wonderful thing and it’s my new year’s resolution to read a book a week.

Happy New Year and here’s looking forward to an amazing 2012.

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