Logo: The Walrus and the Carpenter, from the illustrations to Lewis Carroll's "Alice Through the Looking-Glass", 1872
Image: L. Frank Baum's amazing collection of Oz adventures
Image: L. Frank Baum's Amazing Oz Adventures
These two unique collections in handy collection of 7 and 8 of L. Frank Baum's marvellous books on adventures in OZ will certainly enthrall audience.
The first collection - 7 Books in 1: L. Frank Baum's "Oz" Series Volume 1; contains the following amazing stories:
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz,
The Marvelous Land of Oz,
Ozma of Oz,
Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz,
The Road to Oz,
The Emerald City of Oz
The Patchwork Girl Of Oz.
The second collection of this two part series, titled - 8 Books in 1: L. Frank Baum's "Oz" Series Volume 2 is compiled of the following amazing stories:
Little Wizard Stories of Oz,
Tik-Tok of Oz,
The Scarecrow Of Oz,
Rinkitink In Oz,
The Lost Princess Of Oz,
The Tin Woodman Of Oz,
The Magic of Oz
Glinda Of Oz.
We are sure you will love them. A must for every Oz adventure fan!!!
Now available in the US and UK
Volume 1 - ISBN 1905921012
Volume 2 - ISBN 1905921098
Volume 1 - ISBN 1905921020
Volume 2 - ISBN 1905921039
Available from local bookstores, or online:
|How to buy... paperback - Volume 1|
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|How to buy... paperback - Volume 2|
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|How to buy... hardcover - Volume 1|
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|How to buy... hardcover- Volume 2|
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||Buy now from Amazon USA|
"Yet the old-time fairy tale, having served for generations, may now be classed as 'historical' in the children's library; for the time has come for a series of newer 'wonder tales' in which the stereotyped genie, dwarf, and fairy are eliminated, together with all the horrible and blood-curling incident devised by their authors to point a fearsome moral to each tale. Modern education includes morality; therefore the modern child seeks only entertainment in its wonder-tales and gladly dispenses with all disagreeable incident."
- L. Frank Baum introducing The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
Oz is described as a land with four "color-coded countries": purple in the north, red in the south, yellow in the west, blue in the east. Emerald City is at the center of this land and acts as its capital. Dorothy, the lead protagonist of this entire series is a farmer's daughter, living with her Uncle Henry, Aunt Em, and little dog Toto in midst of the vast Kansas prairie. Their house with Dorothy and Toto in it, are blown away to this magical place called Oz. This house lands on the Wicked Witch of the East, killing her. The Good Witch of the North then gifts her with the dead witch's magical silver slippers and tells her to seek the help of The Wizard of Oz to get back to Kansas. On this journey she meets the Scarecrow, who desires a brain; the Tin Woodman, who needs a heart; and the Cowardly Lion, who must find his courage. All of them together with Toto go to the Wizard. The Wizard promises to help them, if they can kill the Wicked Witch of the West.
Dorothy slays the witch with a douse of water and returns to the Wizard to be disappointed that he himself is a fake, a balloonist from Ohama, brought to Oz by ill winds. She then seeks the help of the Good Witch of South, who helps her in returning back to Kansas.
This is the basic storyline of the first book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and the other books are sequels of the various characters, Dorothy and her friends encounter during their adventures in this journey.
....Then a strange thing happened. The house whirled around two or three times and rose slowly through the air. Dorothy felt as if she were going up in a balloon.
The north and south winds met where the house stood, and made it the exact center of the cyclone. In the middle of a cyclone the air is generally still, but the great pressure of the wind on every side of the house raised it up higher and higher, until it was at the very top of the cyclone; and there it remained and was carried miles and miles away as easily as you could carry a feather....
....She was awakened by a shock, so sudden and severe that if Dorothy had not been lying on the soft bed she might have been hurt. As it was, the jar made her catch her breath and wonder what had happened; and Toto put his cold little nose into her face and whined dismally. Dorothy sat up and noticed that the house was not moving; nor was it dark, for the bright sunshine came in at the window, flooding the little room. She sprang from her bed and with Toto at her heels ran and opened the door.
The little girl gave a cry of amazement and looked about her, her eyes growing bigger and bigger at the wonderful sights she saw. The cyclone had set the house down very gently for a cyclonein the midst of a country of marvelous beauty. There were lovely patches of greensward all about, with stately trees bearing rich and luscious fruits. Banks of gorgeous flowers were on every hand, and birds with rare and brilliant plumage sang and fluttered in the trees and bushes. A little way off was a small brook, rushing and sparkling along between green banks, and murmuring in a voice very grateful to a little girl who had lived so long on the dry, gray prairies....
.....No disease of any sort was ever known among the Ozites, and so no one ever died unless he met with an accident that prevented him from living. This happened very seldom, indeed. There were no poor people in the Land of Oz, because there was no such thing as money, and all property of every sort belonged to the Ruler. The people were her children, and she cared for them. Each person was given freely by his neighbors whatever he required for his use, which is as much as any one may reasonably desire. Some tilled the lands and raised great crops of grain, which was divided equally among the entire population, so that all had enough. There were many tailors and dressmakers and shoemakers and the like, who made things that any who desired them might wear. Likewise there were jewelers who made ornaments for the person, which pleased and beautified the people, and these ornaments also were free to those who asked for them. Each man and woman, no matter what he or she produced for the good of the community, was supplied by the neighbors with food and clothing and a house and furniture and ornaments and games. If by chance the supply ever ran short, more was taken from the great storehouses of the Ruler, which were afterward filled up again when there was more of any article than the people needed.
You are indeed a wonderful Wizard, and your powers are greater than those of my Sorcerer."
"He will not be a wonderful Wizard long," remarked Gwig.
"Why not?" enquired the Wizard.
"Because I am going to stop your breath," was the reply. "I perceive that you are curiously constructed, and that if you cannot breathe you cannot keep alive."
The little man looked troubled.
"How long will it take you to stop my breath?" he asked.
"About five minutes. I'm going to begin now. Watch me carefully."
He began making queer signs and passes toward the Wizard; but the little man did not watch him long. Instead, he drew a leathern case from his pocket and took from it several sharp knives, which he joined together, one after another, until they made a long sword. By the time he had attached a handle to this sword he was having much trouble to breathe, as the charm of the Sorcerer was beginning to take effect. So the Wizard lost no more time, but leaping forward he raised the sharp sword, whirled it once or twice around his head, and then gave a mighty stroke that cut the body of the Sorcerer exactly in two.
Dorothy screamed and expected to see a terrible sight; but as the two halves of the Sorcerer fell apart on the floor she saw that he had no bones or blood inside of him at all, and that the place where he was cut looked much like a sliced turnip or potato.
"Why, he's vegetable!" cried the Wizard, astonished.
"Of course," said the Prince. "We are all vegetable, in this country. Are you not vegetable, also?"
"No," answered the Wizard. "People on top of the earth are all meat. Will your Sorcerer die?"
"Certainly, sir. He is really dead now, and will wither very quickly. So we must plant him at once, that other Sorcerers may grow upon his bush," continued the Prince.
"What do you mean by that?" asked the little Wizard, greatly puzzled.
"If you will accompany me to our public gardens," replied the Prince, "I will explain to you much better than I can here the mysteries of our Vegetable Kingdom."
The Gargoyles were very small of stature, being less than three feet in height. Their bodies were round, their legs short and thick and their arms extraordinarily long and stout. Their heads were too big for their bodies and their faces were decidedly ugly to look upon. Some had long, curved noses and chins, small eyes and wide, grinning mouths. Others had flat noses, protruding eyes, and ears that were shaped like those of an elephant. There were many types, indeed, scarcely two being alike; but all were equally disagreeable in appearance. The tops of their heads had no hair, but were carved into a variety of fantastic shapes, some having a row of points or balls around the top, others designs resembling flowers or vegetables, and still others having squares that looked like waffles cut crisscross on their heads. They all wore short wooden wings which were fastened to their wooden bodies by means of wooden hinges with wooden screws, and with these wings they flew swiftly and noiselessly here and there, their legs being of little use to them. This noiseless motion was one of the most peculiar things about the Gargoyles. They made no sounds at all, either in flying or trying to speak, and they conversed mainly by means of quick signals made with their wooden fingers or lips. Neither was there any sound to be heard anywhere throughout the wooden country. The birds did not sing, nor did the cows moo; yet there was more than ordinary activity everywhere.
......"Why, it's a dragon!" he exclaimed. "No," answered the owner of the big yellow eyes which were blinking at them so steadily; "you are wrong about that. We hope to grow to be dragons some day, but just now we're only dragonettes."
"What's that?" asked Dorothy, gazing fearfully at the great scaley head, the yawning mouth and the big eyes.
"Young dragons, of course; but we are not allowed to call ourselves real dragons until we get our full growth," was the reply. "The big dragons are very proud, and don't think children amount to much; but mother says that some day we will all be very powerful and important."
"Where is your mother?" asked the Wizard, anxiously looking around.
"She has gone up to the top of the earth to hunt for our dinner. If she has good luck she will bring us an elephant, or a brace of rhinoceri, or perhaps a few dozen people to stay our hunger."
"Oh; are you hungry?" enquired Dorothy, drawing back.
"Very," said the dragonette, snapping its jaws.
"Andanddo you eat people?"
"To be sure, when we can get them. But they've been very scarce for a few years and we usually have to be content with elephants or buffaloes," answered the creature, in a regretful tone.
"How old are you?" enquired Zeb, who stared at the yellow eyes as if fascinated.
"Quite young, I grieve to say; and all of my brothers and sisters that you see here are practically my own age. If I remember rightly, we were sixty-six years old the day before yesterday."
"But that isn't young!" cried Dorothy, in amazement.
"No?" drawled the dragonette; "it seems to me very babyish."
"How old is your mother?" asked the girl. "Mother's about two thousand years old; but she carelessly lost track of her age a few centuries ago and skipped several hundreds. She's a little fussy, you know, and afraid of growing old, being a widow and still in her prime."
"Where is that Magic Belt?" enquired the Wizard, who had listened with great interest.
"Ozma has it; for its powers won't work in a common, ordinary country like the United States. Anyone in a fairy country like the Land of Oz can do anything with it; so I left it with my friend the Princess Ozma, who used it to wish me in Australia with Uncle Henry."
"And were you?" asked Zeb, astonished at what he heard.
"Of course; in just a jiffy. And Ozma has an enchanted picture hanging in her room that shows her the exact scene where any of her friends may be, at any time she chooses. All she has to do is to say: 'I wonder what So-and-so is doing,' and at once the picture shows where her friend is and what the friend is doing. That's REAL magic, Mr. Wizard; isn't it?
Well, every day at four o'clock Ozma has promised to look at me in that picture, and if I am in need of help I am to make her a certain sign and she will put on the Nome King's Magic Belt and wish me to be with her in Oz."
"Do you mean that Princess Ozma will see this cave in her enchanted picture, and see all of us here, and what we are doing?" demanded Zeb.
"Of course; when it is four o'clock," she replied, with a laugh at his startled expression.
"And when you make a sign she will bring you to her in the Land of Oz?" continued the boy.
"That's it, exactly; by means of the Magic Belt."
"Then," said the Wizard, "you will be saved, little Dorothy; and I am very glad of it. The rest of us will die much more cheerfully when we know you have escaped our sad fate."
"I won't die cheerfully!" protested the kitten. "There's nothing cheerful about dying that I could ever see, although they say a cat has nine lives, and so must die nine times."
"Have you ever died yet?" enquired the boy.
"No, and I'm not anxious to begin," said Eureka.
"Don't worry, dear," Dorothy exclaimed, "I'll hold you in my arms, and take you with me."
"Take us, too!" cried the nine tiny piglets, all in one breath.
"Perhaps I can," answered Dorothy. "I'll try."
"Couldn't you manage to hold me in your arms?" asked the cab-horse.
Dorothy laughed. "I'll do better than that," she promised, "for I can easily save you all, once I am myself in the Land of Oz."
"How?" they asked.
"By using the Magic Belt. All I need do is to wish you with me, and there you'll besafe in the royal palace!"
"Good!" cried Zeb.
"I built that palace, and the Emerald City, too," remarked the Wizard, in a thoughtful tone, "and I'd like to see them again, for I was very happy among the Munchkins and Winkies and Quadlings and Gillikins."
"Who are they?" asked the boy.
"The four nations that inhabit the Land of Oz," was the reply. "I wonder if they would treat me nicely if I went there again."
"Of course they would!" declared Dorothy. "They are still proud of their former Wizard, and often speak of you kindly."
"Do you happen to know whatever became of the Tin Woodman and the Scarecrow?" he enquired.
"They live in Oz yet," said the girl, "and are very important people."
"And the Cowardly Lion?"
"Oh, he lives there too, with his friend the Hungry Tiger; and Billina is there, because she liked the place better than Kansas, and wouldn't go with me to Australia."
"I'm afraid I don't know the Hungry Tiger and Billina," said the Wizard, shaking his head. "Is Billina a girl?"
"No; she's a yellow hen, and a great friend of mine. You're sure to like Billina, when you know her," asserted Dorothy.
"Your friends sound like a menagerie," remarked Zeb, uneasily. "Couldn't you wish me in some safer place than Oz."
"Don't worry," replied the girl. "You'll just love the folks in Oz, when you get acquainted. What time is it, Mr. Wizard?"
The little man looked at his watcha big silver one that he carried in his vest pocket.
"Half-past three," he said.
"Then we must wait for half an hour," she continued; "but it won't take long, after that, to carry us all to the Emerald City."
They sat silently thinking for a time. Then Jim suddenly asked: "Are there any horses in Oz?"
"Only one," replied Dorothy, "and he's a sawhorse."
"A sawhorse. Princess Ozma once brought him to life with a witch-powder, when she was a boy."
"Was Ozma once a boy?" asked Zeb, wonderingly.
"Yes; a wicked witch enchanted her, so she could not rule her kingdom. But she's a girl now, and the sweetest, loveliest girl in all the world."
"A sawhorse is a thing they saw boards on," remarked Jim, with a sniff.
"It is when it's not alive," acknowledged the girl.
"But this sawhorse can trot as fast as you can, Jim; and he's very wise, too."
"Pah! I'll race the miserable wooden donkey any day in the week!" cried the cab-horse.
Dorothy did not reply to that. She felt that Jim would know more about the Saw-Horse later on. The time dragged wearily enough to the eager watchers, but finally the Wizard announced that four o'clock had arrived, and Dorothy caught up the kitten and began to make the signal that had been agreed upon to the far-away invisible Ozma.
"Nothing seems to happen," said Zeb, doubtfully.
"Oh, we must give Ozma time to put on the Magic Belt," replied the girl.
She had scarcely spoken the words then she suddenly disappeared from the cave, and with her went the kitten. There had been no sound of any kind and no warning. One moment Dorothy sat beside them with the kitten in her lap, and a moment later the horse, the piglets, the Wizard and the boy were all that remained in the underground prison.
Baum's first novel "Mother Goose in Prose (1897)" , was based on stories told to his own children and had the last chapter introducing the character of a farm-girl named Dorothy. Baum said in the preface that he wanted to create modern fairy tales, and not scare children like the Brothers Grimm did.
"Modern education includes morality; therefore the modern child seeks only entertainment in its wonder tales and gladly dispenses with all disagreeable incident."
He criticized the fairy tales that were frightening and horrifying, "I demanded fairy stories when I was a youngster, and I was a critical reader too. One thing I never liked then, and that was the introduction of witches and goblins into the story. I didn't like the little dwarfs in the woods bobbing up with their horrors."
This has a massive influence on Baum's stories, which are written in a simple language, providing the reader an escape route from ordinary life to a fairy tale place full of hope and happiness.
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