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Let your obsession loose in Danielle Paige’s Heart of Tin

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

91y3vITteZLHappy HalloWicked Book nerds!

I hope you’re having a great time tonight dressed as your favorite lit-folk! I for one would like to talk about my favorite man-machine hybrid, Oz’s very own Tin Woodman and his adventure throughout Danielle Paige’s prequel novella Heart of Tin.

In Heart of Tin, we meet our favorite man of steel (pun absolutely intended, but hey, it’s Halloween, it wouldn’t surprise me if Tin put on a red cape and drew an T on his silver chest just for fun tonight) as he’s spent what seems like decades as the King of the Winkie country after Dorothy and the Wizard’s departure. He’s been relatively happy, the Winkies aren’t troublesome people and they seem to get along with everyone despite their oddness, but he’s always felt as something has been missing.  You see, after Dorothy won him a heart, Tin fell head over heels for Dorothy and has thought about her with every heartbeat of his plush heart.

7d64eac8b9f8702ec7f3a80adea3e9d6After Dorothy’s arrival, she and Glinda the “good” Witch of the North, tell Tin, the Scarecrow and the Lion a tale about how Queen Ozma was abusing her power and how Dorothy stopped her and is now a temporary ruler of Oz until a suitable replacement is found, and they assign each of them a series of tasks within Dorothy’s government.  Tin is appointed as head of security so he decides to form an army as his gift to Dorothy.

Of course he’d be ecstatic about her return, despite how long it’s been, he’s never found someone to love in his kingdom, what he didn’t count on, was the rage and jealousy that would suddenly grow within himself because of his love for her, and her sudden rise to power.

11169168_489176714571894_1681841265564999651_nTin isn’t the friendly character that wanted nothing more than a heart anymore.  This is the Tin Woodman that you would find if there was a horror movie adaptation from L. Frank Baum’s classic.  He’ll do anything for love, to win her heart, even harm the innocent and he’ll justify it saying he did it out of love. In a way, his devotion is understandable, he’s very gullible when it comes to Dorothy, he’ll choose to believe she loves him even when she’ll treat him like a piece of garbage, and that’s what people usually do when they’re in love, but that doesn’t mean that he should act the way he does.  Either way, with Tin’s story, Paige has shown once again what a master she is at morphing a classic “happily ever after tale” into a nightmare that not even Michael Myers himself would like to dream about.

With the most horrific and spooktacular of the Dorothy Must Die Novellas to the date, the HalloWicked series has come to an end! Remember to stay tuned on November 10th, when her next novella, The Straw King, will be released and to catch up with all the Dorothy goodness before Yellow Brick War hits shelves next spring. Thank you so much for reading and have a great time!

Happy Reading!

“Somewhere in the back of my mind, I had the vaguest notion that I was the one being wicked. But I found that I didn’t care. In fact, I almost enjoyed it.”
Remember you can get these and many more titles at The Bookmark.
Críticas/Sinopsis · HappyHalloWicked · Listicles · Movie Adaptations · Reviews · Special Events

Reading Outside my Comfort Zone for a change.

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

Hello there fellow book addicts!

Have you ever felt like you’ve been reading, much of the same all the time? Whether it be Dystopian, contemporary, medieval, mystery; we all have this one genre we keep going back to over and over again. All the same, we all have at least one genre that we wouldn’t really tackle, not even if it presented itself as the softest cloud in the universe.

That said, after I realized this was something we all do, for this Halloween I decided to do something different and read something outside my comfort zone and tackle some horror.

My pick: Horns by Joe Hill

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So, why did I go with this cover instead of the original? Here’s a couple of reasons:

  • Number 1: the original cover kind of creeps me out.  Yes, I’m a softie, I like my happy endings and if those aren’t possible, I like “realistic within the storyline” endings. So, naturally, horror wouldn’t really be in my Gotta Read Them All choice of genres.
  • Number 2: My inner Potterhead would’ve thrown a fit if I picked any other version when I had the chance to have one with Daniel Radcliffe’s face on it.
  • Number 3: I promised myself to read it before watching the movie, and the cover reminding me of it was a motivation.

So, my experience with it was extraordinarily long for some reason.  The story was rather enjoyable, and I kept wanting to read more, even when college, work, and sometimes even health, got in the way.  I don’t even think it was the story itself or my busy schedules, it was those margins! The pages had some tiny, tiny margins that left barely any space inkless. Well, maybe I’m exaggerating, but it felt like those margins were smaller than usual, making it feel like a longer read than it actually was.

Content wise, It was an intriguing story with a “dirtier” language than what I’m used to reading, but hey, I don’t judge, every author has its style and Hill works it well. His writing was very controversial and, at the same time, it makes you think some more about life, death, good, evil, right and wrong.

Think about it, your entire life you’ve been told that God is good, the Devil is evil, that there’s no in-between and that you either do good and go to heaven or do bad and go to hell. Out of nowhere comes Hill and presents the most spiritual, honest, caring and loyal kid, who gets screwed over by life and ends up growing horns for no apparent reason. He’s still good, he might want revenge for the rape and murder of the love of his life, but he’s still good nonetheless.

In general, it was a great read although I felt like the explanation as to why everything happened was rather short and straightforward. don’t know if I’ll be reading much horror anytime soon but this was a pretty good start. Most of all, I’m really glad that I finally get to see the movie that, judging from the trailer, changes a lot from the original story, not necessarily in a bad way.  So, if you still haven’t seen the movie, or would like to know what changed, grab a copy and find out!

Remember, you can get these and many more titles at The Bookmark.

Happy Reading and HappyHalloWicked!

Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · features · HappyHalloWicked · Reviews · Special Events

Give In To the Dark Side With The Wicked Will Rise

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

91I7tRPe+cLOz is at war.  The Emerald City is in flames, the order is scattered all across the country, and the evil Princess Dorothy is nowhere to be found, while the just Queen Ozma has become something completely unexpected; one half of a whole. There is chaos all around and it’s up to one person to fix it.

In Danielle Paige’s sequel to the New Yor Times Best Seller Dorothy Must Die, Amy Gumm finds herself face to face with the results of her failed mission.  Dorothy is still alive somewhere and she’s lost all contact with the order members.  She and Ozma have been saved by The Wizard, and the wingless monkeys (with the help of some paper wings and a bit of magic) are taking them to safety.

After a series of events that happen throughout their passing through the Queendom of the wingless ones, which I’ll refrain myself from mentioning to avoid major spoilers, I’d say that the most important theme of the novel is Amy’s fight, not just within Oz or against Dorothy’s rule, but with herself and her potential for darkness and middle_1859bf680eadd8d56e1a96aac11781737a_wickedwillrise_socialgraphic2evil.  All of her life, she’s been a decent person.  Yes, she has a smart mouth that wouldn’t even stay shut if her life depended on it, but she’s never really harmed anyone.  She always let herself be pushed around and told off by everyone, and that past of being pushed around is exactly what will feed her darkness and make her someone different than who she thought she was, that will be the moment when the Wicked will Rise.

In general, I have to say that I found this book a million times more surprising than its prequel, which is saying something because Dorothy Must Die had surprises at every turn.  There were some characters whose involvement I missed when compared to the first book, but their absence made way for a deeper character development primarily for Pete and Ozma, but also for other minor characters.

My emotions were put to a test. For some characters, my affection towards them grew even more; for others, I started hating them, and then there were some characters that, thanks to that ditzy brain of mine, I had completely forgotten how much I hated them (but it’s okay because I’m pretty sure Paige hates them and their sneaky evil ways as much as I do).

I can’t say much more, because the book was a everything that I hoped it would be, maybe even more.  As of this moment, I’ve read every available part of the story, including the prequel novellas, so all that’s left to says is this… Bring on the Yellow Brick War!

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Remember you can get these books, and many more, at The Bookmark.

Happy HalloWicked!

Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · features · HappyHalloWicked · Reccomendations · Reviews · Special Events

Find out What The Wizard is Really Made of in The Wizard Returns!

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

23507358Three tests await the infamous -yet wonderful- Wizard of Oz.  The tests will prove if his levels of wisdom, courage and love are fit for the one true savior this land needs, now that Dorothy has returned and become a tyrant.

In Liam Frank Baum’s classic, the wizard was sort of a quirky guy who took advantage of the Ozian’s innocence by tricking them into building him a palace and making him ruler.  It’s been a long time since then and after Dorothy, with all of her initial childlike innocence, exposed him to all of Oz, he chose to return to the other place… But did he really?

It’s been twenty-five Oz years since his balloon went up in the sky and into the storm, twenty-five years of crashing into the poppy field and into a blissful sleep. Now, after being rescued by a mysterious boy with bright emerald eyes, the Wizard has lost his memory and, the only way to retrieve it is by submitting himself to the Fairies’ test and prove himself worthy of Oz.

This is a story about redemption, about finding your true self and figuring out who you truly are. Was the Wizard truly evil, or was he just making the best out of a complicated situation? Will he remain oblivious to all the damage he’s caused, or will he remember what he’s done?

Danielle Paige has managed to give a fresh spin on a classic, and all of these novellas complement the story in an exquisite way, it wouldn’t be fair for you if I went into detail about the story.  If I did, there wouldn’t be much point in reading it, and that’s not the objective of this piece.  The Wizard’s choices are what make the story what it is, the story’s development helps tie some confusing loose ends from the full novels and the story in general makes you think about who the true villain of the series could actually be.  All I’m going to say is that, after rereading this novella a second time, I feel very strongly about the Wizard, whether it’s in a positive or negative way, the only way you’ll find out is by reading The Wizard Returns!

Remember that this novella, along with No Place Like Oz and The Witch Must Burn in the compilation of stories included in Dorothy Must Die: Stories Volume 1.  Also, don’t forget to follow Amy’s quest to free Oz in Dorothy Must Die, The Wicked Will Rise, and Yellow Brick War, coming soon from Harper.

You can get these, along with many other titles, as always, at The Bookmark!

Happy HalloWicked Everyone!

Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · HappyHalloWicked · Reviews · Special Events

There’s a New Girl in Oz in Danielle Paige’s Dorothy Must Die

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

DorothyMustDie_CoverOnly1.inddWe all know the story, a tornado swept her away from Kansas and into a mysterious and magical land, we know she met some friends, slayed some witches and made some dreams come true.  We also know she never wanted anything other than to get home to her family, because there’s no place like home.  What if that’s not the end of the story..?

What if there’s more to it than what we’ve always known?  What if everything changed after the Lion got his courage, the Scarecrow got his brains and the Tin Woodman got his heart? What if Dorothy herself changed after the click-click-click of her heels? Well, ladies and gentlemen, that’s exactly what Danielle Paige’s debut novel, Dorothy Must Die, is all about!

Amy Gumm, also known as Salvation Amy by her insufferable classmates, has never felt like she belonged in Flat Hill, Kansas.  After her father abandoned them, she, along with her mess-of-a-mother and their pet rat Star, have lived in the Dusty Acres trailer park and her life have been anything but pleasant throughout the years.

Everything changed the night of the tornado… After her mother chooses a party over the safety of their home, abandoning her right before the storm; Amy gets whisked away into the land we’ve all heard about, only it’s not at all what we’ve always heard. Oz is now a desolated, dark and abandoned shadow of what it used to be.  The land is being drained of its magic, the yellow brick road is falling apart, and the only place that seems to be unaffected is the emerald palace, which is now being ruled by a ruthless Dorothy Gale. You heard it! Dorothy’s trading her silver slippers for some fierce six inches ruby stilettos and she’s wreaking havoc around the Emerald City.

But, wait a second, didn’t she go back home? You bet she did! Unfortunately, after seeing Oz, the good and perky farm girl we all know and love became power obsessed and somehow she came back.  Good is now wicked, wicked is now good, everything is upside down and there’s only one person that can stop it.  According to the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked, Amy is the key to freeing Oz of Dorothy’s tight grip.  The only way to achieve it? By killing Dorothy.

1383694404000--MG-1410rt-1B-2This twist on a classic was one that, at first, I had some trouble wrapping my head around, but only because you don’t expect anything related to the Wizard of Oz to begin with a fight between a pregnant girl and your main character.  But that’s just the thing! This isn’t Dorothy’s story, it’s Amy’s and the way Paige created this world as an alternative to a classic is simply genius!  There’s always something going on, sometimes it’s training, sometimes spying, and sometimes it’s fighting, you just never get bored with it.

This is only the first installment of Amy’s story.  Follow her in her quest to free Oz and join the revolution! You can get this, as well as it’s sequel, The Wicked Will Rise, and the first volume of the prequel novella compilations Dorothy Must Die: Stories Volume 1, which includes No Place Like Oz, The Witch Must Burn and The Wizard Returns, as well as many other titles, at The Bookmark.

Happy HalloWicked everyone!

Críticas/Sinopsis · eventos · features · HappyHalloWicked · Reviews · Special Events

Join the revolution in The Witch Must Burn!

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

91P+AGtkzlLJellia Jamb, Dorothy’s go-to maid for absolutely everything, is more than meets the eye and you’re about to find out the extent of it in Danielle Paige’s second Dorothy Must Die Novella, The Witch Must Burn.

 

Jellia has been a maid in the Emerald Palace for as long as she can remember.  Orphaned and brought to the palace as a child, growing up with Ozma and training herself as a Lady’s Maid is what she’s always done, what she loves and what she’s great at, or so she thought. As it turns out, Jellia is part-fairy and possesses strong magic, stronger than most people in Oz, aside from Ozma herself, and now Dorothy who seems to be back for good.

 

“I’d always kept the extent of my magic a secret from everyone else in the palace. Adding a little extra shine to the silverware was no stretch for most Ozians, but ever since that day, I knew that my own powers were different—and stronger—from everyone else in the palace. Except Dorothy. And Ozma.”

– Jellia, Danielle Paige’s The Witch Must Burn

 

With Dorothy taking over the Emerald City, Ozma only a shell of what she used to be, and Glinda taking a secret interest in draining the magic out of Oz for herself, Jellia knows that it’s just about time that someone does something about it. The problem is that, being a servant her entire life, she doesn’t really know where to start, all she knows is that the closer she gets to Dorothy, the higher her intel will be, and maybe, just maybe, she’ll find a way to rid Oz of the nightmare that has become Dorothy Gale.
 

Lucky for her, theres a secret group that has been keeping tabs on her who just might be the key to fixing things.  On an enforced summer “internship” in Glinda’s palace, Jellia meets Nox, an undercover member of the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked.  With his help, along with the resources of the rest of the Order, Jellia will embark on a mission to make Oz whole, no matter the risk.

“ I believe in the possibility of a better Oz, Jellia. I have to. I won’t let Glinda and Dorothy keep destroying our country. And if I can avenge my parents’ deaths—well, so much the better.”

– Nox, Danielle Paige’s The Witch Must Burn

 

y450-293Remember that you can read Jellia’s story, as part of the novella compilation of Dorothy Must Die: Stories Volume 1, which you can get, along with many other titles, at The Bookmark. Join Jellia, Nox, Amy, and the rest of the Order and Join the revolution.  With your help, “the witch will burn!”

 

Happy Reading and Happy HalloWicked!

eventos · HappyHalloWicked · Listicles

Six Spooktacular Reads for October

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

Salutations book junkies! As you already know, October is finally upon us! And, let’s face it, nothing screams October better than a good horror story. So, in hopes of bringing you some ear-splitting, nerve-wrecking inspiration, here are six books that are guaranteed to put you in a HalloWicked mood:

6. Something Strange and Deadly Series by Susan Dennard

SomethingStranger_BannerI know what you’re thinking, that I’ve mentioned this series about a million times on this blog. Well, there’s a reason for it! And it’s the perfect story for the occasion! Voodoo practitioners, necromancers, zombies and an evil spirit crossing realms to seek revenge all in 18th century Philadelphia? Now, that’s what Halloween is about! Available now from HarperTeen.

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5. The Diviners series by Libba Bray

maxresdefaultIt’s 1926 and Evie O’Neill has been exiled from home because of a strange power she possesses. She now lives in New York with her uncle will who is very interested on the occult but is unaware of her abilities. When her uncle is called to investigate a murder, Evie jumps in because her powers just might be the key to solving the mystery and catching the killer.  Available now by Little Brown Books for Young Readers.

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4. A Madness so Discreet by Mindy McGinnis

MadnessSoDiscreetCOVERUSE

Grace Mae has been locked in an asylum where her thoughts, and her voice, are locked inside the deepest corners of her mind. After she gets banished to the darkest cellars of the asylum, a criminal psychologist takes her in as an assistant to hunt down a serial killer. On sale tomorrow by Katherine Tegen Books.

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3. Liars, Inc by Paula Stokes

liars-inc-450x645This young adult psychological thriller follows the story of Max Cantrell, create an alibi company for extra cash and the thrill of danger. Unfortunately, as you may probably guess, nothing good can ever come from a lie, so when Preston goes missing and all clues lead to Max, the race is on to find out who the real killer is, before an innocent has to pay.

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2. Horns by Joe Hill

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Not really YA but a thrilling addition to the October reads.  Ig had everything, but then lost everything, when his beloved Merrin was raped and murdered under inexplicable circumstances.  Being born in a wealthy family and being the only suspect, everyone just assumes that things were settled out of court and that he’s just a murderer who should be behind bars. Everything changes when he starts to grow horns and develops a macabre ability a year later, that when he decides to use this to his advantage and find the real murderer.

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1. Dorothy Must Die series by Danielle Paige

“Somewhere in the back of my mind, I had the vaguest notion that I was the one being wicked. But I found that I didn’t care. In fact, I almost enjoyed it.”

You can’t spell HalloWicked without a group of sassy, rebelliously wicked witches with a cause, which is why Danielle Paige’s series is a must for the occasion! Follow Amy Gumm, as she goes from an ordinary Kansas trailer park teen, to a deadly witch within the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked on a quest to kill Dorothy and make Oz whole again. Part of the story is already available, with Yellow Brick War coming out next year and The Straw King, novella No. 5 coming out November 10th from Harper.

Any other books you’d like to add to the list? Enjoying some of these spooky reads soon? Let us know in the comments section below. And remember, you can get these, and many more titles at The Bookmark!

Happy Reading!

eventos · features · HappyHalloWicked · Listicles · Reviews · Special Events

Go Back To The Beginning in No Place Like Oz

By Mónica González

(@TheLiteraryMomo)

9780062280763Have you ever wondered what happens after a story’s happily ever after? Is it really everything you ever thought it would be, or is it something else? Well, thanks to Danielle Paige’s Dorothy Must Die series, we can find out what happens after Dorothy clicks her heels together and gets back to Kansas.  Now, her first book in the series follows Amy Gumm and her crash landing into a dark and broken Oz, but how did it get that way in the first place? That’s what her short story novellas are here for, starting with Dorothy Gale’s perspective in No Place Like Oz.

A few years after the tornado hit Kansas and Dorothy left and came back, it seems that home was not as great as she remembered, which made her miserable.  She realized that, in Kansas, It’s all about the manual labor you put in, and there’s no time or space to even dream of bigger or better things.

Settling to have nothing but a pig and a chicken for friends (as lovely as Miss Millie might be), Dorothy wants nothing more than to get back to Oz, specially while knowing that no one home believes her story to be real.  After finding a pair of magical ruby red stilettos under her bed on her sixteenth birthday, she does what she knows best, click her heels together three times, bringing this time her aunt and uncle along for the ride.

“As if all that wasn’t enough to tell me I was back in Munchkin Country, the only real proof I needed was staring right at me. Not ten paces from the stream, a little old farmhouse was situated crookedly in a patch of dirt.
Just where I had left it.” – No Place Like Oz

middle_86b1207995c56459583808132eac70aabc_noplacelikeozgraphic3Aunt Em and Uncle Henry’s reactions when arriving at Oz are very believable and realistic for people who don’t believe in the supernatural.  They were reluctant to accept their surroundings as real, they assumed everything was done through trickery and, like Dorothy at first, all they wanted was to get back home to Kansas.

Dorothy, on the other hand, had different plans of her own. On a quest to find and save Glinda from the claws of an allegedly evil Princess Ozma,

“As I looked back out at the bustling city, the cheerful scene suddenly seemed sinister: the smiles of the people turned to leers and the candy-bright colors took on a garish, desperate tint.
Glinda was gone, I reminded myself, off somewhere no one seemed to know about.
Something wasn’t right here.” – No Place Like Oz

Throughout the novella, you will experience with Dorothy the process of morphing from the sweet, innocent farm girl that we all know and love, to the ruthless, power-obsessed dictator that took over Oz, because for everything that’s wonderful, there’s something wicked, too.

“That’s the price you pay for magic. It’s worth it, I thought. Even here, standing at the mouth of a place that radiated the purest evil I’d ever felt, I knew it would always be worth it.” – Dorothy Gale.

Want to know more about the story? Make sure to read Danielle Paige’s No Place Like Oz in her paperback compilation Dorothy Must Die: Stories Volume 1, which you can find at The Bookmark. Stay tuned for more and Happy HalloWicked everyone!