Wicked. Am I Alone?

So I finally read WickedAfter seeing the play, being an avid fan of The Wizard of Oz, and hearing slews of people talking about the novel, I finally read it.  I knew the idea of the novel… that is was a “prequel” of sorts to TWOO but I hadn’t given much thought to what Wicked would actually be about; until a few weeks ago while relaxing on the beach.

My cousin was tearing through Wicked like only a girl can who prefers reading over eating.  She laid on the beach for hours, ignoring her nephew, her favorite cousin (ahem), and the beautiful ocean.  At night, back at the beach house, she would lay on the couch and read and read and read.  She was so engrossed in the novel, she stayed up late every night to finish.  I’m thinking, man this must be some rad book.  She got me even more interested when she tells me there is bestiality, adultery, and murder.  More and more I’m thinking, I have got to get my hands on this novel.  Knowing my mom had a copy at home, I waited until I returned from the beach to begin this tale of debauchery.

Now while there is a slight hint of bestiality, it was not the full blown escapade I was expecting.  And even though there is adultery, it’s done in sort of a sweet way.  And the murder… well we already knew there was murder from TWOO.  And I was thinking it was going to be bloody battles escalated with an underlying thread of the ultimate struggle for power.  Obviously that power struggle exists, but the bloody battle I was so hoping for is absent.  The bloodiest we get is… (spoiler alert) Fiyero and Madame Morrible.  But they don’t really count in my opinion.  Bloody, perhaps, but a battle, no.

Something I didn’t get… and maybe it becomes clear once I finish the novel… is where does the “killing of the wicked witch of the west” scene from TWOO happen?  Because of Wicked, I was thinking it happens at Kiamo Ko.  But if memory serves me right, doesn’t Dorothy take the yellow brick road to get to the witch?  So how does she get to Kiamo Ko?  The map doesn’t show the YBR as coming near Kiamo Ko.  I need to keep reading to figure this one out…

I don’t know… am I alone in being slightly disappointed in this novel?  I haven’t reached the end yet and maybe that has something to do with it.  But honestly, if I can be honest with you dear devoted single number followers, I cannot wait for this to be over.  My cousin tore through it… two of them actually!  One finished and then bam! the next one finished.  And I cannot seem to finish.  This weekend, I thought, this weekend I will finish it.  I even brought home another novel from work to read thinking I’ll finish Wicked and then move on to the next one.  But no, I’m still not done.  I just want it to be over.

Overall, I am enjoying Wicked even if I can’t wait for it to be over.  I think Gregory Maguire is a genius for composing the witch’s back story and giving us reasons behind her anger and obsession with Dorothy.  But sometimes I think he went on a bit of a tangent and I would get confused.  I found myself having to read the novel during times and in spaces where I could concentrate and give it my utmost attention… no wonder my cousin zoned out on it!  The names, the places, and tribes were a lot to keep track of.  While the novel is enjoyable and intriguing, it is long and often times confusing.  I give it an inbetweener… my first inbetweener… it’s a 2 and a 3.

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3 responses to “Wicked. Am I Alone?

  1. Jac, I am not sure how I missed this but I have to comment. I disagree!!! Wicked is beautiful and intense. I think it works so well because Maguire takes a childhood favorite and turns it into an adult universe. He doesn’t just give Elphie’s back story he creates a whole other world complete with its own politics, factions, prejudices, and culture. That’s why it succeeds! Different groups hate each other, people hate Elphie because the color of her skin. It’s real life in a fictional fantasy realm.

    I love too that sexuality does not matter in Maguire’s World. It is entirely fluid and that’s fine. This story is genuinely wonderful. I love it. The evolution of Elphaba and Galinda is awesome. Such a fan!

    • Meh, I just couldn’t get into it! I was waiting for it to be done. Like I said, I thought it was such an original and amazing idea but it just didn’t work for me. I’m glad I read it though.

  2. Dorothy didn’t take the yellow brick road to get to the witches castle. She took the road to get to the wizard, but he sent her to fetch the witches broom. So she didn’t take the brick road.

    I don’t know, I enjoyed the book. It’s a book about life’s imperfections.

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