Additional Tales from Oz Part 2

In my continuing attempt to finish the Ultimate Collection of the Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum, I brought my Kindle in my recent Tubbataha/Palawan trip.  Living on a boat for 5 days, I used Oz as an escape from the heat and physical exhaustion.  Fortunately enough, the three succeeding books I finished featured my favorite elements from the Oz stories.  It was just simple storytelling with lots of fun, heart and soul.

Title:  The Scarecrow of Oz

This story explores a country under the rule of Oz but separated from it by treacherous mountains.  It covers three phases interwoven beautifully by the author.  I got to know Captain Bill and Trot, who eventually gets to live in the magical land of Oz.  Then, it shifted to Jinxland ruled by The Wicked King.  Pon is a very nice kid and got the dream ending he deserves.  And then of course, I got to meet the wonderful people of Oz once more to deliver justice and ensure that love and peace continue to reign within its boundaries.

My favorite quote in this book is:

“But nobody can stay alive without getting into danger sometimes, and danger doesn’t mean getting hurt Captain; it only means we might get hurt.  So I guess we’ll have to take the risk.” – Trot

Title:  Rinkitink in Oz

This story had a strong plot with lots of interesting sub plots, which makes it a great read.  I got to meet a simple family trying to live an honourable and honest life in the Kingdom of Regos and Coregos.  I also revisited King Kaliko, who has taken over the rule from the Nome king.  King Rinkitink and Bilbil the Goat’s back stories are also included in the mix.

But the core plot remains on the destruction and eventual restoration of the peaceful island of Pingaree.  The Island of Pingaree is a new Kingdom slightly outside Oz since it is separated by the Nonestic Ocean.  It is very lucky to have the three magical pearls and great set of rulers – King Kitticut, Queen Garee and the hero of the story, Prince Pinga.

I have two favorite quotes from this book:

“This is the way to get ideas:  never to let adverse circumstances discourage you, but to believe there is a way out of every difficulty, which may be found by earnest thought.” – On Prince Pinga facing the challenges set by King Kaliko

“The beauty of life is its sudden changes.  No one knows what is going to happen next, and so we are constantly being surprised and entertained.  The many ups and downs should not discourage us, for if we are down, we know that a change is coming and we will go up again.” – King Rinkitink

Title:  The Lost Princess of Oz

Yes, the title was very catchy and puzzling especially since it is consistent throughout the book how powerful Ozma is.  But the story did use it as an anchor and it was so heartwarming (albeit expected) to see the support from her kingdom and the various friends she met along the way.  There is a lot of nostalgia in this one as almost every hero from the series and additional stories lent their support in the quest to find Ozma.  The quest was even made harder since the regular elements used – The Magic Picture and Great Book of Records – were also gone from Oz.  I also found Ugu the Shoemaker a surprising and unlikely villain of the story.  My favorite new character from this book was definitely the Big Lavender Bear and the Pink Little Bear.  I was glad they offered their assistance in the quest.

“To be individual, my friends, to be different from others, is the only way to become distinguished from the common herd.  Let us be glad, therefore, that we differ from one another in form and in disposition.  Variety is the spice of life, and we are various enough to enjoy one another’s society; so let us be content.” – Cowardly Lion

Sometimes I wonder if I am already too old for these stories.  But as Frank L. Baum puts it in his letter to readers in the succeeding book:  “my books are intended for all those whose hearts are young, no matter what their ages may be.” I guess that explains a lot.

 

Currently reading:  Ultimate collection of the Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum (E-book) (79% completed)

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Oz Notebook

Oz is one of those fairy places that I always heard of but did not know much about, except for the image of Dorothy with a Scarecrow, Tin Woodman and Lion in tow.  So curiosity got the best of me and bought the Oz collection from the Amazon store.  No regrets here.  Thank you L. Frank Baum for the wonderful stories!

Favorite book: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (Book 1)

Favorite character:  Dorothy (runner-up:  Scarecrow) // Memorable villain:  Nome King // Character I wish to know more of:  Zeb (runner-up:  Glinda the Good)

Favorite chapter:  The Discovery of Oz, the Terrible – Book 1 (runner-up: Bunnybury – Book 6)

Similar to what I did for the Harry Potter series, I selected one quote for each book in the Oz series.  I posted them in twitter and now collecting the quotes here in my cyber pensieve for easier reference.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz –

“Can’t you give me brains?” asked the Scarecrow. “You don’t need them. You are learning something every day. A baby has brains, but it doesn’t know much. Experience is the only thing that brings knowledge, and the longer you are on earth the more experience you are sure to get. (Wizard)

The Marvelous Land of Oz-

“You are both rich, my friends,” said Ozma, gently; “and your riches are the only riches worth having—the riches of content!”

Ozma of Oz –

“No,” said Dorothy, “I wasn’t drowned at all. And I’ve come to nurse you and take care of you, Uncle Henry, and you must promise to get well as soon as poss’ble.” Uncle Henry smiled and cuddled his little niece close in his lap. “I’m better already, my darling,” said he.

Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz –

“That is right, Eureka,” remarked the Wizard, earnestly. “Let us all be a happy family and love one another.” Eureka yawned and stretched herself. “I’ve always loved the piglets,” she said; “but they don’t love me.” “No one can love a person he’s afraid of,” asserted Dorothy. “If you behave, and don’t scare the little pigs, I’m sure they’ll grow very fond of you.”

The Road to Oz –

“Money! Money in Oz!” cried the Tin Woodman. “What a queer idea! Did you suppose we are so vulgar as to use money here?” “Why not?” asked the shaggy man. “If we used money to buy things with, instead of love and kindness and the desire to please one another, then we should be no better than the rest of the world,” declared the Tin Woodman. “Fortunately money is not known in the Land of Oz at all. We have no rich, and no poor; for what one wishes the others all try to give him, in order to make him happy, and no one in all Oz cares to have more than he can use.”

The Emerald City of Oz –

Yet, strange as it may seem, she had accomplished all these wonders not because she was a fairy or had any magical powers whatever, but because she was a simple, sweet and true little girl who was honest to herself and to all whom she met. In this world in which we live simplicity and kindness are the only magic wands that work wonders, and in the Land of Oz Dorothy found these same qualities had won for her the love and admiration of the people.

Journey through Oz part 3

Ozma of Oz is the third book in the Oz collection.  As indicated in the author’s note, similar to the second one, this story is a result of fan letters requesting more stories about Oz.  I have to say, all those letters are well deserved.

Similar to the previous two, this book was a light read.  It offers quirky characters and landscape but without being complicated.  Friendship and working together remains at the core of this story.

I was happy to see Dorothy back!  From the first book, I was already looking forward to more adventures with her.  She is just a lovable character; a mix of innocence, sweetness and sense of adventure.  This time, she was accompanied by Billina and Tiktok, which are both great addition to the set of characters I’ve already been introduced to.

Of course, journey through Oz would not be complete without the Tin Woodman and the Scarecrow.  This was a reunion for characters from the first and second book with the addition of the Hungry Tiger.

Of the three, this was probably the most difficult situation their group of friends has faced.  The Nome King was a tricky opponent!  A bit of luck definitely went a long way.

It ended with a possibility of Dorothy’s return.  Now I am curious with how the story progresses.  Thank you L. Frank Baum for these wonderful stories.

Currently reading:  Ultimate collection of the Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum (E-book)

Journey through Oz part 2

The Marvelous Land of Oz is the sequel to Wonderful Wizard of Oz and second book in the Oz e-book collection I am reading.

I found the 2nd book not as innocent as the 1st but the theme of friendship is still consistently there.

I had a hard time at the start since I was not compelled by Tip, Jack the Pumpkinhead and Saw Horse as much as Dorothy and Toto.  But, the magic was relived upon the arrival of the familiar and well-loved characters Scarecrow and the Tin Woodman.  It was nice to see their growth as rulers. I loved their tidbits of wisdom here and there, which stems from the gifts they got from the Wizard of Oz.  I also loved how Glinda the Good played a crucial role in restoring balance in the Emerald City.

On to the next adventure in Oz… Ozma and Dorothy meets.

Currently reading:  Ultimate collection of the Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum (E-book)