The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

by L. Frank Baum

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is a children’s book written in 1900 by L. Frank Baum and illustrated by W.W. Denslow. It was originally published by the George M. Hill company in Chicago, and has since been reprinted countless times, sometimes under the name The Wizard of Oz. The story chronicles the adventures of a girl named Dorothy in the land of Oz. It is one of the best-known stories in American popular culture and has been widely translated. Its initial success led to Baum’s writing and having published thirteen more Oz books.

Source: Baum, F. L. (1900). The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. New York: George M. Hill.

The story chronicles the adventures of a girl named Dorothy in the land of Oz. The introduction gives a brief description of the fairy tale genre.
Chapter 1: “The Cyclone”
Dorothy lives with Uncle Henry, Aunt Em and her dog, Toto. They live in a small grey log house which gets hit by a cyclone. Dorothy feels the house lift off the ground and is in the middle of the cyclone. Dorothy falls asleep with the swaying of the house.
Chapter 2: “The Council with the Munchkins”
The house lands on top of the Wicked Witch of the East. Dorothy is welcomed by the Witch of the North and the Munchkins. Dorothy asks for help to get back to Kansas. The good Witch of the North tells her to go to the Emerald City to talk to the Wizard of Oz who can help her. She is warned that the way is pleasant, but also dark and terrible.
Chapter 3: “How Dorothy Saved the Scarecrow”
Dorothy heads for the Land of Oz with her blue and white checkered dress and silver shoes from the wicked witch. After she stays at a rich munchin’s house for a celebration, she starts off on the yellow brick road and meets a scarecrow who she saves from hanging on a pole. He then wants to join her to go to the Land of Oz so that he can ask the Oz for a brian.
Chapter 4: “The Road through the Forest”
Dorothy and the Scarecrow talk along the way about Dorothy’s home in Kansas and about how the Scarecrow came to be and why the Scarecrow wants a brain.
Chapter 5: “The Rescue of the Tin Woodman”
Dorothy and the Scarecorw find the Tin Woodman near a cottage and save him. He tells them how he became a tin woodman and why he desires a heart.
Chapter 6: “The Cowardly Lion”
Dorothy, Toto, the Tin Man, and the Scarecrow meet the Cowardly Lion. He joins them on their quest to find the Wizard of Oz.
Chapter 7: “The Journey to the Great Oz”
Dorothy and her friends venture through strange lands. Her friends use their courage, their brains, and there hearts to survive.
Chapter 8: “The Deadly Poppy Field”
Dorothy and her friends find themselves in a poppy field and the scent of the poppies causes Dorothy, Toto, and the Lion to fall asleep. The Lion is too large to carry out of the field and will sleep forever!
Chapter 9: “The Queen of the Field Mice”
The Tin Man save the Mouse Queen and she, in turn saves the Lion.
Chapter 10: “The Guardian of the Gate”
Dorothy, Toto, the Tin Man, the Scarecrow, and the Lion find their way to the Emerald City.
Chapter 11: “The Wonderful City of Oz”
Dorothy and her friends are allowed to see the Wizard of Oz individually. He tells each they are to kill the Wicked Witch.
Chapter 12: “The Search for the Wicked Witch”
Dorothy and her friends fight wolves, crows, and bees, and are captured by the Flying Monkeys. The Wicked Witch tries to take Dorothy’s Silver Shoes but Dorothy throws a bucket of water on her and melts her away!
Chapter 13: “The Rescue”
Dorothy frees the Winkies and they help her save her friends. They begin their journey back to the Emerald City to have the Wizard honor their requests.
Chapter 14: “The Winged Monkeys”
The Winged Monkeys carry Dorothy and her friends to the Emerald City. The King of the Monkeys tells Dorothy why they must grant whoever has the Magic Cap three wishes.
Chapter 15: “The Discovery of Oz, the Terrible”
The friends discover the Wizard is a humbug!
Chapter 16: “The Magic Art of the Great Humbug”
The wizard fools the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and the Lion into thinking they received a brain, a heart, and some courage.
Chapter 17: “How the Balloon Was Launched”
After several days, the wizard called for Dorothy and concocted a plan on how to get her home. They built a hot air balloon and three days later both prepared to leave. The wizard informed the city that the Scarecrow would rule in his absence. Unfortunately, before Dorothy could get to the balloon, it sailed off without her.
Chapter 18: “Away to the South”
Dorothy cries at the departure of the balloon. The next morning, she and her friends try to find a way to get Dorothy back to Kansas. They agree that they will go visit Glinda, the good witch of the South, and ask her for help.
Chapter 19: “Attacked by the Fighting Trees”
Dorothy and her friends leave the Emerald City and wander through an enchanted forest that was guarded by moving trees. After getting past them, they come to a wall made of china.
Chapter 20: “The Dainty China Country”
Dorothy and her friends come upon a tiny town made of china. They meet a small china princess and with her help, they realize how much worse their lives could be.
Chapter 21: “The Lion Becomes the King of Beasts”
Dorothy and her friends come upon a dark forest where they discover wild animals who fear a giant animal-eating spider. The Lion attacked and killed the deadly spider and the forest animals declared him their king.
Chapter 22: “The Country of the Quadlings”
Dorothy and the others call the flying monkeys to take them beyond the Hammer-Heads to the land of the Quadlings. They reach Glinda’s castle and are admitted at once.
Chapter 23: “Glinda the Good Witch Grants Dorothy’s Wish”
Dorothy says good-bye to the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Lion. Glinda shows Dorothy the power of the silver shoes. Dorothy clicks them together three times and returns to Kansas.
Chapter 24: “Home Again”
Dorothy comes home to Kansas and sees Aunt Em. Dorothy realizes how glad she is to be home.
  • Year Published: 1900
  • Language: English
  • Country of Origin: United States of America
  • Readability:
    • Flesch–Kincaid Level: 6.0
  • Word Count: 42,006
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Keywords: 20th century literature, american literature, books of oz, fantasy, l. frank baum, not being a fool, self help, self-help, the importance of having brains, the importance of having heart
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