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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Frank L. Baum - Did YOU know ?


Recently I saw Oz, The Great and Powerful.  It was a good movie with incredible special effects (almost too many special effects ~ at times it seemed that was the focus instead of the story) but it did have a good story. Even though it wasn't actually ONE of Frank L. Baum's Wizard of Oz book series.

Notice how I stress ONE.  After seeing the movie, I am totally and utterly amazed that pretty much everyone I know (a) thought this new movie was a remake of The Wizard of Oz and (b) didn't know that The Wizard of Oz was actually a SERIES of books, not just one book.  I must have told this to about 10 people now and none of them knew this was a series!  I just assumed this was common knowledge.  Apparently not.


Now granted, originally in 1900, Baum wrote The Wonder Wizard of Oz without any thought of a sequel. However, after reading it, thousands of children wrote letters to him, requesting that he write another story about Oz.  So, in 1904, he wrote and published the first sequel, The Marvelous Land of Oz.  Then he went on to write 12 more sequels...so he wrote 14 books in all just about Oz.  The books include:

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, 1900
The Marvelous Land of Oz, 1904
Ozma of Oz, 1907
Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz, 1908
The Road to Oz, 1909
The Emerald City of Oz, 1910
The Patchwork Girl of Oz, 1913
Tik-Tok of Oz, 1914
The Scarecrow of Oz, 1915
Rinkitink in Oz, 1916
The Lost Princess of Oz, 1917
The Tin Woodman of Oz, 1918
The Magic of Oz, 1919
Glinda of Oz, 1920

And you thought J.K. Rowling wrote a lot of Harry Potter books!  You will notice a little break between the years 1910 and 1913 when he didn't publish any Oz books. In The Emerald City of Oz, he wrote that Ozland had lost contact with the rest of the world (in other words, that was going to the be last of it) but .... his readers would have none of that so he started back in 1913 and wrote an Oz book every year after that, until he died in May 1919.

*** If you are interested, you can get all 14 Books on your Kindle for a mere 95 cents ****

What you also may not have known is that even after his death, Baum's publisher had Ruth Plumly Thompson write 21 more sequels - 21 !!  Wow !!

So collectively, the Wizard of Oz series consist of  35 books - nothing the sneeze at !!! 

Yet another thing most people don't realize is that the Oz series of books were not the only books that Frank L. Baum wrote.  He wrote 21 other non-Oz related books.

And still ANOTHER thing many people don't know is that there was a 1990 TV movie (which you can watch below) called The Dreamer of Oz, which was kind of a biography on Frank L. Baum's writing of the first book, which starred the very cute and talented, John Ritter.  Now I don't know how much of this is true but in that movie, I recall that Baum came up with the name of "OZ" when he looked at a filing cabinet that was labeled O - Z and that was how the name came to be.

And one OTHER thing is that many people are not aware that there is another Oz movie called Return to Oz, that starred a very young 11 year old Fairuza Balk (I just love her!)

So.... Now You Know


And...if you have some time and are interested, you can watch the TV Movie


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2 comments:

  1. I have the series on my kindle - I just need to read them.
    Thanks for all the fun fact, though.

    I really enjoyed the movie too!

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  2. Wow, thank you for all this info.
    My friend invited me to see this new movie this Tuesday.
    I now want to read all these books :)
    So cool, thank you :)

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