The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
It has been years since I have read this. I was looking for a book to use for homeschool for my 9 year old granddaughter and I thought this might be what I was looking for. The interest level is right and it has the kind of challenging vocabulary and sentence length found in most classics. I knew that the book differed some from the movie, but I couldn't remember how much. While there are a number of story lines not developed in the movie, it does follow the book fairly well.
This is simply a wonderful tale and every child should read it. It is not only a fun story, but there is a spirit of empowerment that runs all the way through. Whatever our intrepid four need to do, they "gird up their loins" and do it. Without being preachy, the book conveys the idea of meeting challenges step by step, loyalty, courage, integrity and friendship. Baum's imagination was so rich and creative that even adults will find this enjoyable.
I read, years ago, that the head librarian of the New York Public Library was totally against this book when it was first published and did everything she could to convey the idea that it was not literature and shouldn't be found in libraries. Fortunately, children and adults had more sense and the book has been popular ever since it was written.
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