Thursday, May 1, 2014

Book Comment: Wicked by Gregory Maguire

Title: Wicked
Authoar: Gregory Maguire
No. of pages: 406
Published: 29th Sept 1995
Read: March 25, 2014
It was a dragging read for me. I started reading it a week before we watched the Feb 15 musical. And I was able to insert some other reads in between. I blame it on my comprehension, that maybe I didn't get to fully enjoy the book. I read it fast at first and got bored in between and got inclined to finish it right away towards the end. Needless to say, I guess I should also read the other books of the series to maybe appreciate this more. 

I commend Gregory Maguire's imagination to come up with this book. But as I was reading it, and maybe I should blame myself for not continuously reading it, it left in my mind questions and loopholes. There were I think unexplained parts like why Elphaba is really green (or was it mentioned apart from the bottle) and what is it with water and maybe still with her skin color that she can't touch water. Also, is it classified a fairytale/children's book? I found some parts bothersome if a kid would read it. 

When Dorothy triumphed over the Wicked Witch of the West in L. Frank Baum's classic tale, we heard only her side of the story. But what about her arch-nemesis, the mysterious Witch? Where did she come from? How did she become so wicked? And what is the true nature of evil?
Gregory Maguire creates a fantasy world so rich and vivid that we will never look at Oz the same way again. Wicked is about a land where animals talk and strive to be treated like first-class citizens, Munchkinlanders seek the comfort of middle-class stability, and the Tin Man becomes a victim of domestic violence. And then there is the little green-skinned girl named Elphaba, who will grow up to become the infamous Wicked Witch of the West, a smart, prickly, and misunderstood creature who challenges all our preconceived notions about the nature of good and evil.
Generally, I had mixed emotions with this book. I guess anyone would find the plot interesting but as I was going on reading, there were a lot of times I just put the book down. Oz and the Emerald City caught my attention. Elphaba and Glinda are interesting characters. But the book itself did not fully get me. I like the part on the conversation why evil exists and the parts that relays the nature of good and evil. Anyway ending this book comment with some quotes:
"People who claim that they're evil are usually no worse than the rest of us... It's people who claim that they're good, or any way better than the rest of us, that you have to be wary of."
"The wickedness of men is that their power breeds stupidity and blindness."
"No one controls your destiny. Even at the very worst - there is always choice."
"Evil is an act, not an appetite. How many haven't wanted to slash the throat of some boor across the dining room table? Present company excepted of course. Everyone has the appetite. If you give in to it, it, that act is evil. The appetite is normal."
"Remember this: Nothing is written in the stars. Not these stars, nor any others. No one controls your destiny."
"Happy endings are still endings."
"There was much to hate in this world and too much to love."
"You confuse not speaking with not listening."

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