The Complete Stories of Oz by L. Frank Baum – Books for Kids to Read
My girls love the “Wizard of Oz”, watch it every chance that they get, and also dress up as Dorothy for every Pride Parade that they attend. Red ruby shoes are a staple in their closet as well as a blue gingham dress and we have seen every Oz movie imaginable.
So, when they found out there were other stories that followed the land of Oz, they begged me to get the books and luckily I found them (or so I thought) all in one anthology that runs about thirteen dollars and 1,486 pages. We read this book last summer every night before bedtime, but we also cheated a bit by listening to the audio book in the car when we went on road trips or to run errands around town.
I love this anthology because L. Frank Baum was a feminist before his time, giving all his Oz books a strong girl power theme and wonderful adventures where they could show off their resourcefulness and bravery!
The version that I bought for them is “The Complete Stories of Oz”, but since these stories are under public domain you can find them on for your Kindle for about 99 cents on Amazon. The Kindle version on Amazon is more complete as it has all twenty two of the tales. We will be plugging through those very soon.
So my girls loved this ‘complete’ collection and can still tell you about the four different parts of Oz with great enthusiasm. I read almost all 1,486 pages to them last summer (out of love) and they have already made plans to relive the magic of this book again this summer.
They loved the perils and dangers that all the characters living in a magical land faced. The ‘Wheelers’ were terrifying villains and they were excited to discover Ozma, the benevolent and rightful ruler of Oz, had been transformed to a boy named Tip at an early age when she had been given to the evil witch Mombi. They are overjoyed when Aunt Em and Uncle Henry come to live in the wonderful world of Oz after deciding to leave their impoverished life in Kansas, which they never understood why they didn’t do this in movie in the first place.
The Nome King is another villain that they love to hate and they fall in love with Dorothy’s pet chicken, Billina in the book “Ozma of Oz”. In all, there are over 100 new and fabulous characters in this anthology! My personal favorite guy is Captain Jo Sandwich who owns an orchard where his trees grow sandwiches!
So if you are up for a big reading project, I highly recommend taking this book on. Even though Dorothy and her friends from Oz expose themselves to magical threats on a daily basis, the outcome is always in their favor and the heroes always makes it back home safely while discovering that they always had the strength to do so in the first place!