“[My mother] told me that, whatever anyone at school said, a trailer was where I lived, not who I was. She told me that it was the best home in the world because it could go anywhere.”
And what better place to go than the colorful, magical land of Oz? But we learn quickly that this ain’t your mama’s Oz.
Dorothy Must Die is the first of a series of novellas about Amy, from…(I’ll give you one guess). She’s in high school with a mother who suffers from addiction and needs more care than she gives her daughter. Amy doesn’t get much relief at school either, where she is mercilessly teased by the uber popular, glitter encrusted, and soon to be teen-mom Madison. Madison is of those people you love to hate, and although her appearance in this book is short, she’s full of character and wit.
One day, a storm brews and Amy finds herself at home hunkered down for an incoming tornado. Her mother has left her to party with friends and Amy’s only company left is Star, her mom’s pet rat.I’m sure you know where this is headed, but this is no family-friendly jaunt to the Emerald City. There is no room for singing and merriment in a world that has basically been turned into a barren wasteland ruled by the unmerciful, ambitious, and devastatingly stylish Dorothy. Her friends are there too – The Scarecrow has gone from dopey and curious to a downright sadistic war criminal. The tin man? Sure, he has heart…and knives and swords that he wields with blind devotion for Dorothy. And the lion is basically a soul-sucking dementor. We also have appearances from the Wizard and Ozma and a lot of new and memorable characters.
Which brings me to a separate point, if you’re into books about magical worlds like Harry Potter, this is a fun one. Oz is, of course, a magical place, and author Danielle Paige really focuses on this – the mechanics of how the magic in Oz works and how it can be used and harnessed. She adds a new chapter to the familiar family friendly story we all know with a bit of horror, dark comedy, and tongue in cheek irreverance.