Reviews for Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2012 Spring
An appended note describes the illustrator's dissatisfaction with the movie images of Baum's classic. Ingpen's fans will appreciate his attempts to draw "L. Frank Baum's 'Oz' characters and their adventures to be as near to 'real' as I have always wanted them to be." The large book, with its heavy cream-colored paper and approachable pictures, is a handsome version for collectors.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2011 October #4

Ninth in Ingpen's series of illustrated classics, this atmospheric outing blends elements of American realism with elegant whimsy. With surprising emotion, Ingpen conveys the Tin Woodman's grim transformation, one limb at a time, from a human into a metal automaton; his scrawny Wicked Witch of the West, with her spidery black hair, overcoat, and striped stockings, would be equally at home roaming New York City's West Village as she would the yellow brick road. Readers yet to discover the story of Oz will find a wholly original vision in this edition. Ages 10-up. (Oct.)

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School Library Journal Reviews 2012 February

Gr 3--6--This handsome oversize edition pairs Baum's unabridged original text with plentiful illustrations ranging from small insets to majestic full-bleed spreads. Ingpen's blend of realism and whimsy suits the tale to a tee as Dorothy is whirled away from her Kansas-prairie home, a locale marked by washed-out wheat hues, carefully wrought details, and structured angles and outlines, and makes landfall in a wondrous realm distinguished by sun-warmed yellows and greens, soft textures and supple edges, and kaleidoscopic perspectives. An appropriate image sets the tone for each chapter, foreshadowing the characters that will be introduced or the adventures that will unfurl. Throughout the novel, the illustrations are perfectly synchronized to the story's pacing, highlighting moments of great importance (e.g., the good Witch of the North bestowing upon Dorothy the kiss that will keep her safe); exploring bits of backstory (the Tin Woodman's tale of his transformation); and creating an aura of magic and mystery. Ingpen's human characters are believably realistic, while his representations of the residents of Oz, closely based upon Baum's descriptions, are pleasingly fantastical. The book begins with a brief biography and portrait of the author. A good choice for both freshening up the classics shelf or for sharing as a read-aloud.--Joy Fleishhacker, School Library Journal

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