"If there's a book you really want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it." ~Toni Morrison

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Wicked by Gregory Maguire

Wicked by Gregory Maguire

What it's About:
"This is the book that started it all! The basis for the smash hit Tony Award-winning Broadway musical, Gregory Maguire's breathtaking New York Timesbestseller Wicked views the land of Oz, its inhabitants, its Wizard, and the Emerald City, through a darker and greener (not rosier) lens. Brilliantly inventive, Wicked offers us a radical new evaluation of one of the most feared and hated characters in all of literature: the much maligned Wicked Witch of the West who, as Maguire tells us, wasn’t nearly as Wicked as we imagined."  Amazon.com
What I Thought:
Oh my!  I was so disappointed by this book.  I have spent years listening to others rave about this book (and the musical based on it).  I put the book on my TBR list, I tried to check it out at the library, I listened to others rave about it.  Finally I have read the book and I am disappointed.

I will start by saying that it was interesting to read one person's idea of the Wicked Witch's life outside of L. Frank Baum's book.  I appreciate the thought, creativity, and interest that the author put into this story.  However, I was not impressed with his vision of the character.

First, the language.  Maguire's word choices weighed the story down.  When I have to stop every few minutes to look up a word, it affects my reading.  I feel that it creates a distance between me (the reader) and the author, instead of creating a connection.  I am not a fan of authors who insist on using obscure, antiquated language to express their ideas.

Next, the story.  It didn't always make sense to me.  Sometimes it jumped too much.  At other times it lagged.  I often felt like I was reading for...ev....er.... while nothing happened to move the plot forward.  Other times it seemed like years passed by in a few pages.

The characters.  I didn't buy into the characters in this book.  I finished the book feeling absolutely no emotional connections to any of the characters, not even anger.  I didn't believe the relationships and I didn't care what happened to any of them.

I was dragged through this book.  I really wish that Maguire had a more original and interesting idea of who the Wicked Witch was.  The saving grace for this book was the surprise addition of L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz at the end of the e-book.  A much more enjoyable read.

Have you ever read Wicked?  What did you think?

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