The Annotated Wizard of Oz, Hardback

The Annotated Wizard of Oz Hardback

Illustrated by W. W. Denslow

Part of the The Annotated Books series

3.5 out of 5 (6 ratings)


The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is the quintessential American fairy tale.

Michael Patrick Hearn, the world's leading Oz scholar, now provides a fascinating new annotation that not only reacquaints readers with the Tin Woodman, Scarecrow, and Cowardly Lion, but also illuminates the colorful background of this treasured American classic.

This edition explores numerous contemporary references, provides character sources, and explains the actual meaning of the word "Oz." A facsimile of the rare 1900 first edition appears with the original drawings by W.W.

Denslow, as well as 25 previously unpublished illustrations.

There is a bibliography of L. Frank Baum's published work, every notable "Oz" edition, and the stage and cinematic productions from 1939's The Wizard of Oz, to the 1974 Broadway hit, The Wiz.

A beautiful, awe-inspiring work, The Annotated Wizard of Oz is an enduring tribute to the timeless joy of The Wizard of Oz, and a classic to rival Baum's own.


  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 544 pages, 146 illustrations, (56 colour ) bibliog
  • Publisher: WW Norton & Co
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Children's literature studies: general
  • ISBN: 9780393049923



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Showing 1 - 5 of 6 reviews.

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Review by

Not only does the story remain as magical as ever, but the annotations are really first rate. There's also a great introduction, and an appendix of Denslow's illustrations.

Review by

The annotations are dull; Michael Patrick Hearn is no Martin Gardner, and just couldn't seem find much to say.

Review by

I have to second the opinion that the annotations are dull. Definitely not as delightful or well-annotated as the Annotated Alice, although this book comes with more front material. A good investment for the avid OZ fan.

Review by

Three books in one. 1) The original story with all the original illustrations reproduced exactly as appeared in the first edition (this is the only re-production edition available). 2) A 102 page literary history with extensive biography of Baum and his works and illustrator Denslow. 3) Extensive annotated notes.Michael Hearn is the master of annotation and this is just one in a series he has done including The Christmas Carol and Huckleberry Finn. The factual detail is dense, but always relevant and interesting. Oz may be a "kids story" but this is serious adult entertainment.

Review by

After reading Gregory Maguire’s version of Oz in <i>Wicked</i> and <i>Son of a Witch</i>, I felt I needed to return to the original, which I hadn’t read before. Like many of us, my entire knowledge of the story is from the 1939 movie. I had purchased this centennial edition for my college’s children’s literature collection, and this was a great excuse to read it. The book incorporates facsimiles of Baum’s 1900 publication, including the original artwork by Denslow. Hearn has added extensive annotations to the text, as well as a 98-page introduction with background on the author and illustrator (and many relevant photographs and drawings). It’s a gorgeous book.I learned, among other things, that the “ruby slippers” of the movie were actually “silver shoes” in the book (a detail that was correct in <I>Wicked</I>), and that the Tin Woodman was in fact the woodcutter upon whose ax Elphaba’s sister, Nessarose (aka the Wicked Witch of the East), casts an evil spell that resulted in his slowly but surely being turned into tin. Interestingly enough, in <I>Wicked</I>, Nessarose has no arms, an implication that she may be the product of her mother’s affair with the Quadling Turtle Heart. In the original <I>Wizard of Oz</I>, Dorothy and her friends encounter the armless Hammer-Heads in Quadling country, near the end of the book, after Dorothy has killed the Wicked Witch of the West.

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