25 Following


The Royal Book of Oz

The Royal Book of Oz - Ruth Plumly Thompson, L. Frank Baum H.M. Wogglebug, T.E. had an idea of creating a genealogy tree
Geneology Tree
for every significant Oz inhabitant. Scarecrow realized that he does not have any family tree whatsoever which made him visit his farm of origin. He ended up discovering he was a long-lost emperor of a distant country.
Chinese Emperor
Dorothy bothered by his long absence set off in search for her oldest Oz friend.

The book is credited to L. Frank Baum but it does not take a genius to figure out he had very little, if any, input. The writing style and personalities of recurring characters are completely different. The changed personalities are not bad as they allow for some minor friction between regulars making their interactions more interesting.

Now about the bad parts of the novel. In case somebody have not noticed the latest trend in winning any argument is to call you opponent racist regardless of the argument's nature and opponents view on races. Repeat the accusation until it sticks and you win. For this exact reason I am very careful not to throw around the word "racist" needlessly. This time I feel justified calling the novel laughably racist.

The Silver Island where Scarecrow became an Emperor is made after Ancient China; written by a person who literally had no clue what she was writing about and using all kinds of stereotypes as an inspiration. I was willing to accept even this - keeping in mind the time the book was written - until I stumbled upon the description of a dinner. At this point I decided enough is enough and an accusation in racism is justified.

The plot failed to excite me. Quite probably the reason for this was a contrast with Baum's writing. The novel was not completely hopeless, so I am willing to give it two stars. This is the last book of Oz available from Project Gutenberg and I feel this would be a very good time to stop reading the series.