Speed Date with Amy: DOROTHY MUST DIE by Danielle Paige

Posted 17 April, 2014 | Mary @ TheBookSwarm | | 30 Comments

DOROTHY MUST DIE (Dorothy Must Die #1) by Danielle Paige
YA Fantasy
452 pages, hardcover
Available now (April 2014)
Publisher: HarperCollins
Review copy provided by publisher for honest review

I didn’t ask for any of this. I didn’t ask to be some kind of hero.
But when your whole life gets swept up by a tornado—taking you with it—you have no choice but to go along, you know?

Sure, I’ve read the books. I’ve seen the movies. I know the song about the rainbow and the happy little blue birds. But I never expected Oz to look like this. To be a place where Good Witches can’t be trusted, Wicked Witches may just be the good guys, and winged monkeys can be executed for acts of rebellion. There’s still the yellow brick road, though—but even that’s crumbling.

What happened?
Dorothy. They say she found a way to come back to Oz. They say she seized power and the power went to her head. And now no one is safe.

My name is Amy Gumm—and I’m the other girl from Kansas.
I’ve been recruited by the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked.
I’ve been trained to fight.
And I have a mission:
Remove the Tin Woodman’s heart.
Steal the Scarecrow’s brain.
Take the Lion’s courage.
Then and only then—Dorothy must die!

First Date: Amy’s one of those people that I just want to take under my wing. She brings out the Mama Bear in me so the least I can do is buy her dinner on our first date! She lives in a crappy trailer with her useless mother, is bullied at school and doesn’t have much prospect of escaping the deep, dark hole she’s currently existing in. But then along comes a tornado to change everything.

Second Date: When she wakes up, she’s in Oz but it’s not the Oz Amy remembers from the movie, and it’s not little Judy Garland dancing around in her sparkly red kitten heels. It’s a power-hungry vamp who’s draining Oz of its magic, supported by a ‘roided out Lion, a crazy-as-a-loon Scarecrow and parts-is-parts Tin Man. Dorothy in her skin-tight and boobalicious (but still blue-and-white checkered) dresses with her mesmerizing shoes and glossy hair was a bit over-the-top but then, it seems Dorothy’s gone a bit around the bend. Amy’s recruited by some Wicked witches to kill Dorothy, learns some magic of her own as well as some ninja-like moves, flirts with the hot-but-dark-and-brooding guy and goes undercover with the mission to take out Dorothy ASAP (spoiler: this does not happen…in this book, anyway).

Third Date: Well, that ended abruptly. Yes, I realize it’s a trilogy but not as much happened in this first book as I expected, though it’s a pretty solid set-up for the next two books (and hopefully, no soggy middle story). I liked Amy’s growth in this book, how she moved from a downtrodden, bullied young girl to a young lady who’s more confident in her abilities and who has purpose in her life. She’s not just going through the motions anymore. A satisfying date, all in all. I think we’re better off friends but I’ll check in on Amy and see if she checks everything off that list of hers.

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30 Responses to “Speed Date with Amy: DOROTHY MUST DIE by Danielle Paige”

  1. This was a preorder for me, but I haven’t managed to crack the spine yet. After the abrupt ending you just spoke of, I might wait this one out. I’m sure I’ll read it, but maybe not until it’s finished . . . we’ll see 😉 Great review!

    ALSO–on the first pass, I misread “ninja-like” for “ninja” and got all excited, LOL. Oh well, ninja-like is cool too.

  2. I didn’t even realise that this book was part of a trilogy! From reading the blurb, it did sound as if this book had a lot of potential to deliver a solid story, I’m sorry that it ended sort of abruptly for you. I hope that the second books ends up being more enjoyable for you. Great review Mary!

  3. I loved the beginning of this book then it was all I could do to finish. I almost gave up a few times but thought it would pick up. That abrupt end made me mad. lol

    I think I’m done with this series unless someone says the second book is really good.

  4. This book sounds interesting. Although I think I would find it kind of confusing to read about characters I’ve known and read about for as long as I can remember, but then completely different. Definitely interesting! But I can understand why you are better off as friends 😉

  5. I’m not a fan of abrupt endings – even if it’s in a series. I feel like this book as all the potential in the world, but I’ve heard some less than stellar things, and that has me second-guessing actually reading it! Thanks for your honest take on it, Mary 🙂

  6. I’ve heard mixed reviews about this one so far, so I have a feeling I’ll be waiting to see how this trilogy plays out before picking it up. And, like Melissa, I’m not a fan of abrupt endings, so I think I’ll skip this out for now. Wonderful review, Mary! 🙂

  7. I hadn’t seen a review for this one yet. I haven’t had much of an urge to read it though. And I think I’ll wait until the next book is out and see how people are liking it.

  8. I enjoyed this one. I’m not a huge fan of the writing that made the whole thing seem… less real, but I liked it. I’m not a fan of the whole Full Fathom Five package deal thing though…

  9. Gosh I have got to read this one. I like the sound of it. That line about Dorothy in her booblicious blue checkered dress made me laugh. I am not too crazy though about the abrupt ending, but still this is one I am hearing great things about so I am reading it soon.

  10. I’m a little bummed this one ends so abruptly Mary! Yes it’s the first book in a series, but I like feeling like I have a mostly-complete smaller story arc even as the larger series arc is clearly going to continue into future books. Still, I’m excited to give this one a try, I’ve been curious about it since I first saw that crazy amazing cover. Glad you enjoyed your date for the most part!

  11. Oh no, I’m bummed to hear that this ends abruptly! I like the sound of this setup, and Amy seems like a character I would like to meet. Glad she evolves from being a bullied victim to a stronger character, but I do wish this had more closure, even if it is temporary. Still I’m excited to give it a try! Fab date review as usual Mary! 🙂

  12. This is a very different take on Wizard of Oz! I like. I don’t like that this is a trilogy, and I refuse to pick this up until the last one is released. Wonderful speed date, Mary! 🙂

  13. I’m glad this girl grows throughout the book! I have skipped this one so far, though. I’m very wary of Oz retellings, and it sounds like this one is just setting up the scene for future. I’ve seen a LOT of that happening with the first in series lately. THey all feel like ‘setups.’ Maybe I’ll write a post on that.