Last book, I said that it was a good stopping point for the series. After reading the seventh book, The Patchwork Girl of Oz, I completely stand by that. The opening book even included a stupid reason as to how our “Historian” was able to reach our friend Dorothy: telegraph waves that somehow got to Oz. I wish I was joking, but Baum is honestly lucky that these books are for children and that I’m already dedicated to reading all of these books.
New characters were introduced that really never went anywhere. They could have been interesting but the focus when back to Dorothy and Ozma. There was a fun adventure that was wrapped up way too quickly. It was your basic fetch quest mission trying to get items where getting one took half the book while everything else was lost. Also, I have the feeling that everyone decided to forget the all-powerful Glinda the Good. Everything could have been solved easily with less effort and travel.
In this book, we have journeyed back to Narnia in order to save the world yet again. We learn that the year spent on Earth for our four siblings equals hundreds, if not thousands of years, in Narnia. Supernatural world follows supernatural timelines. As you have probably seen from my reviews of the Oz series, I’m usually all for this. Except for this time, it was not worth it.
In this book, the characters spent the majority of the time sitting around and talking. Adventure is usually what these books shout out as their main appeal: explore this supernatural world. I was more than halfway through the book before the characters even traveled across the land. They listened to a story for a good amount of time. They argued about what direction they were going in when they finally did actually get moving. There was really nothing of substance happening in the story. It felt like that author was trying to either capture the magic of the previous book or do some really bad foreshadowing or the next book, but I’m leaning toward the former. I hope the next book is something worth reading.
It is the final week of spoopy month 2021, and I decided to read what should be considered a classic since the movie came out: Coraline by Neil Gaiman. I mean, this is a children’s story, right? It shouldn’t be that scary, right? Wrong.
The entire time I was reading, I was switching between two thoughts: this is the perfect book for October two thoughts and this should not have been written for children. The creepiness factor was there the entire time, and I was on the edge of my seat. I’ll be watching the movie for the first time soon (no judgment) to see what they decided to replace to make it more child-friendly. Great horror story, I just won’t be reading it to a child anytime soon.
I have finished reading Lovecraft Country, and what can I say besides how fantastic the book was. I understand why it was made into a TV show; I just hope it did the book justice. Even though the stories are seemingly disjointed, there is a very clean wrap-up at the end.
One of the things I enjoyed most about this book is the realism. Sometimes when there are supernatural elements in stories, you have to suspend disbelief to a great extent. Some aspects of the story are based on stereotypes which are not very hard to believe that there would be people who believed in that sort of thing, such as the Magic Negro. Yet still surprising you enough the everything would still come as a surprise as you didn’t know what story. No black person died during this book, which is a plus. Also, I love a good villain to hate. What could be better?
I have read the sixth, and what probably should have been the final, book of the Oz series. Everything was wrapped up cleanly, and there really didn’t need to be anything more. The perfect thing happened: Uncle Henry and Aunt Em finally believe Dorothy and do not think she is telling stories or incapable of understanding reality, respectively. Also, having adults argue with chickens on chick-rearing was never something I ever expected to read.
Again, in the Oz fashion, we are on an exploration around the fairylands that Oz also inhabits and meet the many different creatures. This was more interesting than the previous book since we saw how these creatures interacted within the bigger narrative within the world rather than just showing up. Also, there is a bit of action that I can not tell without spoiling a large portion of the book, but it does help with the overall world-building. Overall, this was a cute book.
My next foray into reading series that I should have gotten around to during my childhood is The Chronicles of Narnia. Now, Before reading this, I struggled in deciding in which order I should have read this series. After much deliberation and crying over making the wrong decision, I decided to read this series in publication order. You might be mad, but I do have my reasons for doing so at this time, which I may explain once I’m done. Because of that, the first book I’m reading is The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe.
The first time I read this book was because the movie was coming out. I had an ongoing deal with my mother to read a book before watching the associated film. Then, I didn’t really get the book’s allegorical nature. Still, even rereading it, I would not have noticed had I not known beforehand. Sometimes allegory can be heavy-handed, but in this book, it’s really subtle. Aslan is an allegory for Jesus for those not in the know, and I’ll let you go from there.
From what I remember of the movie, it was pretty accurate the writing. There wasn’t an epic battle scene, though. Also, the girls weren’t allowed to fight because, according to Santa, women just ruin battle. Thanks, Santa; the misogyny was very much needed. (All the sarcasm implied.)
I have finally come up with the perfect archetype for who Dorothy Gale is. She is the type of child who will walk to an unmarked white van and ask for candy. I know this is supposed to be fiction, but you have to teach “Stranger Danger” at some point. Uncle Henry and Auntie Em need to lock her in her room.
I would say that this is the worst book of the series. It honestly feels that Baum only wrote this for the child fans. The last section of the book is literally just a list of the people who showed up at a birthday party. I felt myself going to sleep through my reading because nothing interesting happened. They would show up in a new country, get asked for an invitation to the party before continuing on their way. Also, Shaggy Man is such an imaginative name.
Here’s to the next book is something worth reading.
I decided that I needed a break from all of the heavy reading. I decided to go with a classic, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Like most movie remakes of books, the book had a lot more going on that could not fit into a feature length film. The movie also wholly misunderstands Oz as a country, and the book has a lot more blood in it.
Let me begin by saying that Oz isn’t a dream world. It’s a real place where multiple types of these supernatural creatures reside. Also, Dorothy is not a grown woman. In fact, I would say that she is no more than ten. For the most part, forget everything you know about the land of Oz from the movie because it’s completely wrong. The ruby slippers aren’t even ruby; they’re silver.
Now, there are 15 books in the Wizard of Oz series. I counted. I plan on going through every book in giving my thoughts on it and see how the world revolves as it goes on. I know that there a couple more movies out there that take place and Oz, and I want to see how those fit into the storyline. I have watched a Disney version based on the fourth book, and so far, that seems to be the most accurate to the series. I can’t wait to see what I’ve been missing by only watching one movie.
I am back, finally finished with the Remember Me series. First, I would like to mention that the third book makes no sense without the second book. Second, I would like to say that you should only read the first book. This last book is a total deviation from the first in ways that make absolutely no sense. The protagonist’s characterization went entirely by the wayside, where she wasn’t the same person we were introduced to. Other characters appear, where the entire time they’re there, you just thinking “WTF?” the whole time—also, lizard people, for some reason. The book felt like a cash-grab, read like a cash-grab, and should never have been written. There is also a mixture of r/menwritingwomen that is more creepy than endearingly stupid or hilarious. I honestly wish that I could forget everything that I read. Stick with the first book, and no further. You’ll thank me.
Let me preface this by saying that I love terrible movies. The lower the IMDB or Rotten Tomatoes score, the better. That is what led me to watch Velocipastor. I spent the entire movie laughing at the movie with my friends, while still practicing social distancing. I honestly can’t tell if this movie was purposely bad or accidentally bad. Either way, it was hilarious.
The movie starts with a young priest needing to get away from the church in small-town America for a bit after the death of his parents. After driving to China, he comes across a woman being chased by a ninja for a stone that she possesses. On her death bed, she gives the stone to our priest and he ends back up in America. Turns out, this stone allows him to turn into a dinosaur. One night, he saves a prostitute who later convinces him to use his powers to help save people. That is where the story begins.
I’m pretty sure from the small description that I gave you, you can figure out where some things are heading towards. The Christianity piece of the movie doesn’t add anything to the movie. Honestly, it makes things more ridiculous if you actually think about it. Also, there’s a Vietnam flashback… for reasons. If this sounds interesting to you, I would definitely recommend watching this. Even if you think this is stupid, I would still recommend you watch it because honestly seeing is believing when it comes to this movie.