April 1, 2014

Review: Dorothy Must Die

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Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige
Grade: A-
Release date: April 1, 2014
This ARC was provided by Read Between the Lynes in exchange for an honest review.
Summary: I didn't ask for any of this. I didn't ask to be some kind of hero.
But when your whole life gets swept up by a tornado—taking you with it—you have no choice but to go along, you know?

Sure, I've read the books. I've seen the movies. I know the song about the rainbow and the happy little blue birds. But I never expected Oz to look like this. To be a place where Good Witches can't be trusted, Wicked Witches may just be the good guys, and winged monkeys can be executed for acts of rebellion. There's still the yellow brick road, though—but even that's crumbling.

What happened?
Dorothy. They say she found a way to come back to Oz. They say she seized power and the power went to her head. And now no one is safe.

My name is Amy Gumm—and I'm the other girl from Kansas.
I've been recruited by the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked.
I've been trained to fight.
And I have a mission:
Remove the Tin Woodman's heart.
Steal the Scarecrow's brain.
Take the Lion's courage.
Then and only then—Dorothy must die!

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Holy cheese and crackers, this book...well, let's just say it was one of my most-anticipated reads of 2014.  As I started to read, I got worried.  Amy's Kansas wasn't appealing to me, and I felt like the environment was a bit cliche.  But once our heroine arrived in Oz, my worries were wiped away (well, sort of).  The setting came to life and all the little details played like a movie in my head.  There are bombshells dropped around every corner.  I'm still reeling from the last one (especially since I was expecting a love triangle, and I'm pretty sure there won't be one now...).  That was definitely a cliffhanger (although not as literal as the one in Mark of Athena).  The concept of what Amy has to do to kill Dorothy (listed in the summary above) is awesome.  There were moments when the action dragged a little, but it seemed right that *SPOILER* Dorothy didn't die yet. *END SPOILER* It all would've happened too quickly, since Amy was utterly unprepared to face someone so powerful.  I loved connecting characters to the original book and movie, particularly Gert.  When she kissed Amy's forehead for protection, I remembered that from the book, and thought that was wickedly (pun unintentional) awesome.  I'm still curious as to who Mombi is, and I would've liked a few more answers in Dorothy Must Die, but hopefully they'll come in the 2nd and 3rd books.
Romance is pretty clean, once Amy gets to Oz.  The books gets a bit gruesome at moments, and the language has its ugly moments, but I'm pretty sure it isn't on every page, so that's a plus.

The Verdict: At about February 18th, I had begun to resign myself to waiting until the book released, since it didn't look like I was getting an ARC.  But then, if you remember from a Rewind & Review, I talked about the bookstore owner emailing me to tell me there was an ARC she thought I'd be very excited about.  And, boy, would Dorothy have been worth the wait.  But I'm glad I didn't have to.  It's an excellent twist on the story we all know and love.  There's been an onslaught of everything Oz lately (Oz the Great and Powerful, Oz and the Wicked Witch coming to Once Upon a Time, and so forth), but this is definitely one of the better contributions to the world of Oz.

2 comments:

  1. I'll have to look into this. Sounds like a cool book.
    As a note, in the Oz canon, Mombi is a witch who enchants the rightful ruler of Oz (Ozma) and keeps her captive. She's the villain of the second book in the Oz series. If I remember rightly, anyway.

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  2. I got so excited over this book and when I read it it felt incomplete. The ending was mostly the bother aside from too much dragging in the middle and gore.

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