Author: Nick Damon
Publisher: Secret Origin Press
Page Count: 376
Source: My wallet, well it was free on Amazon one day and I grabbed it up.
Summary: The Land of Oz is dying. Emerald City has been conquered and the most valuable item in Oz is missing. The race for the Ozma is on and only one person knows where it is. Dorothy Gale.
There’s just one problem, Dorothy has grown up and forgotten all about her adventures in Oz. She’s been living in New York, working in an office cubicle, chained to her desk, wishing to escape her dreary, miserable existence. On one chilly November day, she gets her wish. An old enemy from Oz has tracked her down, sending her running for her life. Now Dorothy must follow a mysterious trail of clues left by her younger self, if she hopes to survive.
How can she get back to Oz if she doesn’t remember the way? And where is the Ozma? What is the Ozma? A Lion, a Scarecrow, and a Tin Man all play a part in the mystery. Will they help her or hurt her? A dangerous adventure awaits when Dorothy returns to Oz!
Review: This isn't the usual type of book I read and review on The Flirty Reader. In fact, I can't tell you the last time I read a book without any sex in it. (I take that back, I read World War Z, no sex there.) But when I saw this book listed on my Bookgorilla email one day, I immediately took advantage.
Here's why: I'm totally enamored with Oz. I haven't read all the books or anything. But I have seen the films, Wizard of Oz and Return to Oz millions of times. Plus Wicked is one of my favorite musicals. Something about the world is endearing and exciting for me. So I knew when I saw Shadow of Oz I would be interested.
And I wasn't disappointed! I'll have to warn you though, this books isn't about the magnificence of Oz or about an adventurous of a young, naive girl, Dorothy, for that matter. Oz is in turmoil and of course Dorothy is the only one who can fix it. But Dorothy is also a cause of it's demise. You'll have to read to find out what. But the theme in this book is that there are consequences to all of your decisions. You see the consequences from Dorothy's wishes she made years before for the Scarecrow, the Lion, and the Tin Man. They had a direct impact on what happened to Oz today.
This is a true alternate universe that Damon has created. Dorothy has been stuck in the real world, New York City, for many years, never happy, just treading water in her dull existence. She has no friends, her co-workers barely know she's there, and she hasn't had a boyfriend. Her apartment is boring, her job is boring, and her life is just boring. A sharp contrast from her life in Oz. Until one day so starts seeing things: images in her mirror, a tree grabbing her sleeve, and crows crashing into a window and swarming her at work. Yes, Dorothy has a desk job. Dorothy thinks she's going nuts, but is she?
The fact is: Dorothy lost all memory of her life in Oz. She feels so lost because that big chunk of her life has been erased and she has no reason to explain it. Who can put the pieces back together?
By this point in the book, I was hooked. I loved the A/U aspect of Dorothy's life. I loved seeing the little hints of Oz interjected into that mundane world she was living in. Almost like hints that Dorothy surrounded herself with or was subconsciously attracted to.
it's not until the help of a mysterious and handsome man dressed in odd green clothing comes galloping into her life on a talking horse, does Dorothy question her whole existence and yearn to figure out what she has forgotten about her past. I would question my whole life too if this happened to me.
They journey back to Oz, a world now crumbling from the harsh reign of the Nome King. The heart of Oz, Ozma is missing, and only Dorothy, the Queen of Oz as she learns, knows where it's hidden. The Ozma is a large emerald that beats the life into the land of Oz. With it missing, the world as Dorothy knows will die, taking all of her friends and people of Oz with it. But she has no memory where she hid the Ozma.
What I really loved about this story was the lore of the world. I know not all of it was accurate and a lot was changed from the cannon, but it still intrigued me. Like I would say to any naysayers, this is an A/U and Damon did an excellent job making the world his own as well. Damon takes you through a complex journey through the wilds of Oz with Dorothy and the Knights of Oz. You see them get into tangle after tangle, and you even see some of them die. This is not all unicorns and rainbows story, folks. There is darkness to Shadows of Oz. But there is also a tinge of romance which really made me happy.
Dorothy and Jasper, you'll have to read it to find out more. I won't give it away.
What I want to applaud Damon is the excellence of his storytelling and world building. Without telling the readers, Damon showed us what the journey for Dorothy and her friends was like. Plus the love story was written so subtly that it just made sense and dare I say hotter than a lot of graphic things I've read lately.
All in all, this is a solid book. The only complaints I could point out are all the disembodied actions, creative dialogue tags, typical mistakes a proofer could take care of, and the cliffhanger chapter endings. I mean, seriously, every chapter was a cliffhanger. It made me think it was fanfiction for a while.
Rating: Four (well, lip bites just seems wrong. So four Tik Toks. And on a side note, Ke$sha ruined Googling Tik Tok for me)