The Road to Oz

Overview

Dorothy and her friend, Polychrome, find themselves on a road through some strange places, to the Land of the Winkies, and on to beautiful Emerald City. But why are they there, and how did they get there? Princess Ozma of Oz sent for them, and the Cowardly Lion and the Scarecrow, of course, to take part in her lavish birthday celebration.

Dorothy and her friends follow the enchanted road to Oz and arrive in time for Ozma's birthday ...

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Overview

Dorothy and her friend, Polychrome, find themselves on a road through some strange places, to the Land of the Winkies, and on to beautiful Emerald City. But why are they there, and how did they get there? Princess Ozma of Oz sent for them, and the Cowardly Lion and the Scarecrow, of course, to take part in her lavish birthday celebration.

Dorothy and her friends follow the enchanted road to Oz and arrive in time for Ozma's birthday party.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375847578
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 1/13/2009
  • Series: Little Golden Book Series
  • Pages: 24
  • Sales rank: 310,040
  • Age range: 2 - 5 Years
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 7.80 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

L. Frank Baum authored many books about the land of Oz.

Peter Archer, who adapted Baum’s Road to Oz for the Little Golden Book, was the pen name of Kathryn and Byron Jackson, who wrote hundreds of stories for Golden Books.

Harry McNaught had a long career as an illustrator of books for children. He did several titles for Random House.

Biography

Dorothy, Toto, the Scarecrow, Aunt Em -- where would our national psyche be without The Wonderful Wizard of Oz? L. Frank Baum, who created a story with an indelible, sometimes haunting impression on so many people, led a life that had a fairy-tale quality of its own.

Baum was born in 1856 to a family that had made a fortune in the oil business. Because he had a heart condition, his parents arranged for him to be tutored privately at the family’s Syracuse estate, “Roselawn.” As an adult, though, Baum flourished and failed at a dizzying variety of ventures, from writing plays to a stint with his family’s medicinal oil business (where he produced a potion called “Baum’s Castorine”), to managing a general store, to editing the Aberdeen Pioneer in Aberdeen, South Dakota. In 1897, following his mother-in-law’s advice, Baum wrote down the stories that he told his children. The firm of Way & Williams published the stories under the title Mother Goose in Prose, with illustrations by Maxfield Parrish, and Baum’s career as a writer was launched.

With the publication of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in 1900, Baum gained instant success. The book, lavishly produced and featuring voluptuous illustrations by William Wallace Denslow, was the bestselling children’s book of the year. It also set a new standard for children’s literature. As a commentator for the September 8, 1900 New York Times described it, “The crudeness that was characteristic of the oldtime publications...would now be enough to cause the modern child to yell with rage and vigor...” The reviewer praised the book’s sheer entertainment value (its “bright and joyous atmosphere”) and likened it to The Story of the Three Bears for its enduring value. As the film industry emerged in the following years, few books were as manifestly destined for adaptation, and although it took almost four decades for a movie studio to translate Baum’s vision to film, the 1939 film did for the movies what Baum’s book had done for children’s literature: that is, raised the imaginative and technical bar higher than it had been before.

The loss of parents, the inevitable voyage toward independence, the yearning for home -- in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Baum touched upon a child’s primal experiences while providing a rousing story of adventure. As his health declined, Baum continued the series with 14 more Oz books (his publisher commissioned more by other authors after his death), but none had quite the effect on the reading public that the first one did. Baum died from complications of a stroke in 1919.

Good To Know

Baum founded the National Association of Window Trimmers and published a magazine for the window-trimming trade – he also raised exotic chickens.

Buam was married to Maud Gage, a daughter of the famous women’s rights advocate Matilda Joslyn Gage.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Floyd Akers, Laura Bancroft, George Brooks, Edith Van Dyne, Schuyler Staunton, John Estes Cooke, Suzanne Metcalf, Louis F. Baum, Lyman Frank Baum (full name)
    1. Date of Birth:
      May 15, 1856
    2. Place of Birth:
      Chittenango, New York
    1. Date of Death:
      May 6, 1919
    2. Place of Death:
      Hollywood, California

Read an Excerpt

The Way to Butterfied

"Please, miss," said the shaggy man, "can you tell me the road to Butterfield?"

Dorothy looked him over. Yes, he was shaggy, all right; but there was a twinkle in his eye that seemed pleasant.

"Oh, yes," she replied; "I can tell you. But it isn't this road at all:"

"No?"

"You cross the ten-acre lot, follow the lane to the highway, go north to the five branches, and take -- let me see --"

"To be sure, miss; see as far as Butterfield, if you like," said the shaggy man.

"You take the branch next the willow stump, I b'lieve; or else the branch by the gopher holes; or else -- "

"Won't any of 'em do, miss?"

"'Course not, Shaggy Man. You must take the right road to get to Butterfield."

"And is that the one by the gopher stump, or -- "

"Dear me!" cried Dorothy; "I shall have to show you the way; you're so stupid. Wait a minute till I run in the house and get my sunbonnet."

The shaggy man waited. He had an oat-straw in his mouth, which he chewed slowly as if it tasted good; but it did n't. There was an apple-tree beside the house, and some apples had fallen to the ground. The shaggy man thought they would taste better than the oat-straw, so he walked over to get some. A little black dog with bright brown eyes dashed out of the farm-house and ran madly toward the shaggy man, who had already picked up three-apples and put them in one of the big wide pockets of his shaggy coat. The little dog barked, and made a dive for the shaggy man's leg; but he grabbed the dog by the neck and put it in his big pocket along with the apples. He took more apples, afterward, for many were on the ground; and eachone that he tossed into his pocket hit the little dog somewhere upon the head or back, and made him growl. The little dog's name was Toto, and he was sorry he had been put in the shaggy man's pocket.

Pretty soon Dorothy came out of the house with her sunbonnet, and she called out:

"Come on, Shaggy Man, if you want me to show you the road to Butterfield.," She climbed the fence into the ten acre lot and he followed her, walking slowly and stumbling over the little hillocks in the pasture as if he was thinking of something else and did not notice them.

"My, but you're clumsy!"' said the little girl. "Are your feet tired?"

"No, miss; it's my whiskers; they tire very easily this warm weather," said he. "I wish it would snow; don't you?"

"'Course not, Shaggy Man," replied Dorothy, giving him a severe look. "If it snowed in August it would spoil the corn and the oats and the wheat; and then Uncle Henry would n't have any crops; and that would make him poor; and -- "

"Never mind," said the shaggy man. "It won't snow, I guess. Is this the lane?"

"Yes," replied Dorothy, climbing another fence; "I'll go as far as the highway with you."

"Thankee, miss; you're very kind for your size, I 'm sure," said he gratefully.

"It is n't everyone who knows the road to Butterfield,"' Dorothy remarked as she tripped along the lane; "but I've driven there many a time with Uncle Henry, and so I b'lieve I could find it blindfolded."

"Don't do that, miss," said the shaggy man, earnestly; "you might make a mistake."

"I won't," she answered, laughing. "Here 's the highway. Now, it 's the second -- no, the third turn to the left - or else it 's the fourth. Let 's see. The first one is by the elm tree; and the second is by the gopher holes; and then "

"Then what!" he inquired, putting his hands in his coat pockets. Toto grabbed a finger and bit it; the shaggy man took his hand out of that pocket quickly, and said "Oh!"

Dorothy did not notice. She was shading her eyes from the sun with her arm, looking anxiously down the road.

"Come on," she commanded. "It's only a little way farther, so I may as well show you."

After a while they came to the place where five roads branched in different directions; Dorothy pointed to one, and said:

"That's it, Shaggy Man."

"I'm much obliged, miss," he said, and started along another road.

"Not that one!" she cried; "you're going wrong."

He stopped.

"I thought you said that other was the road to Butterñeld," said he, running his fingers through his shaggy whiskers in a puzzled way.

"So it is."

"But I don't want to go to Butterfield, miss:"

"You don't!"

"Of course not. I wanted you to show me the road, so I should n't go there by mistake."

"Oh! Where do you want to go to, then ?"

"I 'm not particular, miss."

This answer astonished the little girl; and it made her provoked, too, to think she had taken all this trouble for nothing.

"There are a good many roads here," observed the shaggy man, turning slowly around, like a human windmill.

The Road to Oz. Copyright © by L. Baum. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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