Son of a Witch (Wicked Years Series #2)

Son of a Witch (Wicked Years Series #2)

by Gregory Maguire
3.8 498


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Son of a Witch 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 498 reviews.
theokester More than 1 year ago
A year or so ago I read Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, and found it pretty enjoyable and thought provoking. Enough so that I picked up the follow-up book, Son of a Witch. It took a while to finally getting around to reading the second book...and by now I've seen the musical and forgotten elements of the first book (which are definitely radically changed for the musical). My overall feeling is that Son of a Witch has way too much going on and isn't terribly focused. While Wicked had a moderately clear message it was trying to convey, I often felt lost as to the direction Son of Witch was going. Perhaps it was done intentionally by Maguire to help us feel just as uneasy and confused as Liir. If so, I think it went a little overboard. It also felt like many aspects of the text were there for shock value rather than substance since many of the actions and themes were just dropped in the reader's lap without any further discussion or contemplation by the narrative. The narrative style was a bit confusing at first, transitioning between current action and dream/coma flashbacks. I got used to that style fairly quickly, but then the coma ended...apparently before Maguire was done with the backstory, because the next many chapters continued the flashback tale even though Liir was no longer in his coma. It wasn't awful, just a little unsettling and felt like bad planning from the author. Once the backstory has finalized, Liir just seems to wander idly around Oz, picking up quest after quest, but not really focusing whole heartedly on any one task. He constantly behaves like a victim of circumstance, all the while bemoaning his fate and his lack of action. The main storyline, once extracted from all the extraneous threads in the book, was actually fairly interesting. Over the course of Liir's young life, Oz is transitioning between one political faction after another. While the changes of power are relatively free of violence, each new ruler brings new trials, disasters, repressions and violence. The flashback history while Liir's in a coma takes us through a couple of puppet governments (one almost literally with the Scarecrow...though "not Dorothy's Scarecrow") and finally leaving us with the Emperor. Liir becomes aware of the vile machinations of the Emperor and disagrees with the actions of the government. He helps uncover a mystery plaguing many travelers around Oz (a violent and tragic "face scraping" of travelers...which threatens to throw rival groups into war, or at least keep them from any form of peace). Liir even leads a small rebellion against the Emperor, but he really isn't motivated in this and just sort of wanders off. Generally, this book felt like it was trying to make a number of political and social statements but in the end it just felt like a statement about inaction, complacency and finding your own purpose. Any statement was muddled amid too many distractions. There were many great paragraphs and "sound bites" that would make for cool one-off quotes, but the ideas weren't lasting enough to help pull the book off. All of that said, I am still interested enough in the vivid and intriguing Oz that Maguire has crafted, such that I will likely seek out the third book (A Lion Among Men) to see what happens next. But sadly, my expectations have fallen a bit. *** 2.5 stars (out of 5)
brjunkie More than 1 year ago
Liir, the assumed son of the Wicked Witch of the West is found near death in the Vinkus, and is nursed by the maunt Sister Candle with a unique ability playing the domingon, guided by the mysterious Mother Yackle, (once again on the sidelines). Liir is a useless, not very bright, kinda plain and mundane boy who follows Dorothy back to Oz from Kiamo Ko, after the murder of the Witch. On their journey back to see the Wizard, Princess Nastoya begs Liir to promise to return to her, so that he may aid her in separating the Animal from the human in her. No matter how much he protests that he has no talent, and although he never admits that it is him doing it, he is able to fly the broom. (Dorothy's cruelty is more apparent in this sequel, as compared to "Wicked". She is mean to Liir, and annoyed by him being a part of their troop. She's kinda a bully to him.) Liir meets the Scarecrow, Lady Glinda, and Shell in his search for Nor. Liir returns to Kiamo Ko a couple of times, while on his search for Nor. And in his reunion with Nanny and Chistery, I found it hard to accept that Chistery was able to develop a working use of language. G.M. really touched and disturbed me when Liir witnesses the tragedy to the Piglet in Southstairs. Which was worse to me than what Shell was actually doing down there. I truly experienced the same feelings that Liir was going through. Liir is more suited to take orders and not question them. That is why he excels so well in the military. Commander Cherrystone attempts to be a father figure to Liir, (failing to raise him properly in my opinion, by putting orders ahead of doing the right thing). People's faces are being scraped off in the Vinkus, were the reader, (for Liir is not smart enough to figure this out for himself, he has everything told to him, always), discovers the result of the Wizard obtaining the torn page of the Grimmerie. Graffiti-ed in the Emerald City of Oz is "Elphaba Lives!" It raises the question, is the Wicked Witch of the West dead? The answer to this, and to whether or not Liir is the son of Elphaba, and does Liir possess the same talents as Auntie, is finally answered in the last 6 pages. (I'm very glad I revisited/read again this fantastic story!)
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I read Wicked I was loving the musical. But when I got to the end of the book it felt like Maguire just gave up. It was still a good book so I decided to read the sequal, looking for awnsers. All it gave me was more questions, a scattered plot, and a confusing of showing love between characters. In the end I was pissed. He left it open with a sad excuse for an ending. And yet again gave up towards the end.
julie12332 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book and an looking forward to the next installment. The writing style is wonderful and it is easy to get totally immersed in the world that Maguire has expanded upon. The story is wonderful however, the content is not appropriate for children (adult situations that may make some adults uncomfortable).
rmn125 More than 1 year ago
Though not quite as good as Wicked, I did enjoy reading Son of a Witch and seeing how the story continued. The ending kind of drops off a little bit and left me wondering what's going to happen next. I definitely plan on reading more of Gregory MaGuire!
Mystert More than 1 year ago
The story line was chaotic and aimless. The ending was pointless and left you wanting more. I felt like he was setting up a sequel more than delivering a compelling story.
Bookworm1951 More than 1 year ago
The continuing saga. In keeping with the first of the series, this is definitely NOT for children. Again, some adult situations. A must read series fot the Wizard of Oz fan. This is a very long book with many areas of focus. Sometimes I found the story getting a bit confusing and off-track. Almost too much information. Probably would have been a much better book if it was a bit shorter and to the point. Still worth reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Don't waste your money
Michael Chabot More than 1 year ago
This is probably the best one ever out there in these "Wicked" series, it's filled with mystery, a good pace, and finding who's your kin and who are you. If you a fan of Wicked which i hope you are! You'll madly fall in love with the stroyline and the bright charaters
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Maybe it's just me, but I don't think Son of a Witch came close to comparing with Wicked. It seemed to rely too much on the story line from Wicked while not developing much of a new story for a completely different story with a completely different character. The end of the book was a little dull for me, ending abruptly without much elaboration. Now, this isn't to say it's a horrible book - I still enjoyed it for the most part - I just think it was taken down a notch or ten when compared to Wicked. Hopefully A Lion Among Men will be better???
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you loved Wiked you are in for a treat.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a slow read. The plot was odd and not very enjoyable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I think that, after reading the first book in the series (Wicked), it was slightly disappointing - but Wicked was quite exceptional, after all. Son of a Witch was a great book, it just couldn't quite compare to its predeceossor. All in all, though, it was a great part of the Wicked series.
jrgp More than 1 year ago
Son of a Witch or Lost in OZ... I expected more from the book than what I actually got out of it. Being the sequel of Wicked the majority of the characters were already formed but seemed to be lacking substance in this volume and if possible a bit less supported. I found the best part of this book to be the preview of this book found at the back of Wicked which by the way was Chapter One in this book word for word, leaving me to feel a bit taken aback, especially when there was no preview available for the next book in this serious. As for the writing style I overlooked the grammatical errors in Wicked attributing it to a new book and bad editing on the publishers end. The same problems in this existed and lead me to question if the book was edited at all.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved "Wicked" and enjoyed this sequel as well. Maguire is a wonderful storyteller.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The (not so) wicked witch is dead, what next? Love still continues on while Liir continues to question who he is & if in fact he is the son of the witch. Some of your old characters return while the author yet again leaves you wanting more with the new characters & "to be continued" ending. Can't wait to read the next. A friend borrowed me the 1st 2 books many years ago & I had been wanting to reread them for awhile. When I found their is 4 in the series I knew I had to get them. Can't wait to read the next.
TeenageCthulhu14 More than 1 year ago
LIIR IS ANNOYING Liir is a boring character. His mother was SO much cooler than he was. I think another problem that I have is that it didn't revisit too many of the characters from the first. Many of the characters were new, like Candle, Trism, and several of the Home Guard (and the Birds, we can't forget about all of them). Several characters don't even go on into the others (Candle, Iskinaary, and Trism do appear or are mentioned in the next few) At least in 1, 3, and 4 we got characters that we knew (the Witch of the West, Glinda, etc in Wicked, the Lion and Nor in A Lion Among Men, and Liir and several others in Out of Oz.) This one was not as good as Wicked. No way. The third I find better, and that one wasn't all that great either. It is, however, important to the storyline (unlike A Lion Among Men) if you want to continue on to book 4. It adds more to the series, but was still my least favorite (and I really hate to say that, too).
Mistress_Nyte More than 1 year ago
A wonderful sequel to Wicked, I was entranced from the start! This story picks up with Liir, the boy who came to Kiamo Ko with Elphaba, leaving his home with Dorothy and the gang for Oz.  Dorothy is not a kind person at all in this story, and I cannot help but wonder why Liir is so taken with her.  Many adventures befall the young Liir, who was totally failed by Elphaba if she was intending to "raise" this child she brought with her to her lover's home.  He is very immature and needs more from life than he has previously received.  He hopes to find this in Oz. Liir does become more mature over time, but it does take him a long time to reach any level of maturity, that brings me hope that he might not be such a failure as an adult with anyone in his life other than himself to care for, unlike the non-maternal-esque Elphaba.  The questions of his parentage and if he has any powers or abilities do present themselves through the book, but for some of the answers, be prepared to wait quite a while for your curiosity to be appeased! I am thrilled to discover that there is more to the story that Maguire has created for the people of Oz.  I will have to hurry and get book three!
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Great book!
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