What Did You Think Of… Dorothy Must Die?

What did you

Today we are going to talk about January’s book of the month, Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige.  First let’s check out this book and see what it is all about.

dorothyWe’re going back to the Yellow Brick Road with Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige.

Amy Gumm is not some kind of hero, but that’s exactly who she’ll have to become when her whole life gets swept up by a tornado and she’s dropped in none other than Oz. But this isn’t the Oz she read about, or saw in movies. In this Oz, Good Witches can’t be trusted, Wicked Witches may just be the good guys, and winged monkeys can be executed for acts of rebellion. And Dorothy is not who she used to be. They say she seized power and the power went to her head. And now no one is safe. And Amy is the only one that can stop her. Amy has a mission and Dorothy must die!!!

Questions to think about and/or answer:

  1. Define Good and Evil. How are the sides of Good and Evil defined in the novel? How do the definitions differ?
  2. Amy Gumm is tasked with killing Dorothy for the greater good of Oz. Is murder (a morally wrong crime) justified for the greater good ie. killing an evil dictator? Explain.
  3. Is this different from Dorothy killing the Wicked Witch in the original Wizard of Oz story? Explain. What role, if any, did the killing have on Dorothy’s current path?
  4. Amy Gumm says that she is not some kind of hero. Define what being a hero means and how she does or does not fit the description.
  5. In this dark retelling of the classic Wizard of Oz story, there is a slew of characters both new and familiar. Compare the new and old elements and what their overall role is within the text.
  6. Home is a recurring theme in both the original tale and this retelling. Define what home means to you. How is home defined in the retelling and does it differ from the original tale and your personal definition?
  7. There seems to be an universal appeal to the original Wizard of Oz story, what do you think it is? (Question from Mocha Girl Alysia)
  8. What effect, if any, do you think the James Frey/ Full Frontal Five controversy play in the book’s popularity?

What did you think of Dorothy Must Die?

tbMocha Girl Maya

I wanted to like it. I really did, but it was a little too dark from me. I knew this was a darker retelling of the Wizard of Oz, but I had no idea how dark it was going to go. It was a little much for me. I agree with others that the book could’ve been a hundred or even two hundred pages shorter and be a lot better than what it was. Overall, this was an okay read, not great, not horrible, just okay.

Mocha Girl Bmocha girl pic

I enjoyed it but I don’t plan on reading the rest of the series. It did get a little more interesting way later when they actually start getting to the mission but it also kind of makes you angry with how some of the things “go down.”


So what did you think about Dorothy Must Die?

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Hi there! It's Maya here. I'm a 23 year-old blogger and author. I have entirely too many books and I plan to get many more. I enjoy writing about books and talking about them and I wished I'd had realized how fun it was a lot sooner.

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  • I wasn’t quite sure if I was going to like it primarily because it was classified as YA, but I loved it (and I’m a 50-something reader). After completing DOROTHY MUST DIE, I promptly read all of the available prequel novellas and then urged several librarians (including the teen librarian) from my local library system to read the books. I’ve been raving about this series to anyone that will listen.

    One of the things I enjoyed was the notion of good actually being evil and those perceived as evil actually being good (appearances and titles can be deceiving). I’m just getting into the second book in this trilogy and hope to have it finished by the time the third book is released. I’m hopeful that Amy won’t have to actually “kill” Dorothy or anyone else, simply because I believe that justifying murder in certain circumstances puts us all on the edge of a slippery slope with justice. Is the world better off without the presence of evil people? Yes. Does that give us the right to indiscriminately kill off people we perceive as evil? No!

  • I was looking forward to seeing what all the talk around the book blog world was about this book. I loved the overall concept of the book. I loved how it all started with Amy and her Pink hair. But then something happened and it completely fell into the YA formula. Young girl gets turned into a warrior and is placed in life threading circumstances. She is parent-less and then the war starts. Remember Katniss and Tris. I was really hoping this one would be different. I agree with Vivian about the good folks are evil and evil folks are good. That was really interesting. I am not sure if I will complete the series but I am curious what is going to happen next and how this is all going to end.

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  • John

    I was an Oz aficionado when I was little, so this might be fun!