The Wicked Wizard of Oz


"Wicked" is truly a tremendous piece of fiction, even more amazing when you realize this is Gregory Maguire's first novel. Maguire has managed to recreate the beloved magic atmosphere of Oz in a completely logical and plausible manner, fleshing it out and populating it with creatures who are at once odd and yet wholly believable. He has used L. Frank Baum's famous work as a springboard and while the reader recognizes the basic structure of Oz from the books we read as children (as well as from the movie), "Wicked" reintroduces you to your old friends and favorites and adds more.

Many people love the Broadway play, Wicked, and yet it is not in any way the substitution for the book which not only vividly portrays the political aspects of living in Oz, but also has additional elements and nuances that are missing from the play. The book, being a creature of prose, is much darker and more political. It makes you, the reader, think and evaluate with the intensity that the stage simply is not able to provide. Having that little edge of controversy and dissention is what really helps to add an urgency and a seriousness to the events in the book that are absent from the play. The Wizard of Oz is a wonderful fantasy, painted with the broad brush. In "Wicked" the reader learns everything from how the witch's monkeys became winged to where the rubies for those slippers came from to why the witch's skin was green.

"Wicked" is not the modern version of "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. " So do not expect to read about Dorothy's adventure in the "wonderful Land of Oz". As a matter of fact, this character does not even enter into the picture until the very end! This book, like many other good books, is not without being controversial, and there are some people who are not comfortable with some of the topics this books raises, such as infidelity, multiple murders, bestiality, a smidgen of profanity, torture, obsession, prejudice, political oppression and duplicity, religious lunacy, etc. And yet, this is the type of the work of fiction book that provokes intense thinking processes; it is an incredibly imagined story, for adults, that you'll find yourself thinking about for a long time after you've finished reading it.

Are you aware that the story has been taken up by Marc Platt’s production company (the same as the production company as Rachel Getting Married) and a movie is scheduled to debut in 2010.

Intrigued? Know someone who will enjoy reading this type of a novel? Thinking about a present for a someone special who loved the play? How about purchasing the first edition copy? Or the signed edition? How about a copy that contains drawings of broom or a witch by Gregory Maguire himself?

maguire hand drawing

wicked drawing

gregory maguire draw broom

I hope from photos above you got a good idea of the Gregory Maguire signature and sketches.

First edition book published by Regan book in 1995. This book is published with a dust jacket and priced at $24.00. In this edition, on the verso of the title page states First edition and #1 present on number line on copyright page.

Multiple photos of First edition book by Reagan books

Easton Press also printed a special limited leather edition that contains a Gregory Maguire signature and certificate of authenticity. Details and photos of this book can be found in:

Wicked Easton Press

There are many other later printings of this title, but they usually have a different price in the dust jacket and different numbers present on the number line on the copyright page. In addition, there is also many softcover copies on the market.

As far as prices:
Easton Press - new seal copies sells under $250
1st edition, 1st printing hardcover in dj signed - under $500
1st edition, 1st printing hardcover in dj unsigned - under $200
1st edition, later printing hardcover in dj signed - under $200
1st edition, later printing hardcover in dj unsigned - under $100
1st edition, later printing softcover signed - under $100

1st edition, 1st printing hardcover in dj signed with sketches - under $800

There are some other titles by Gregory Maguire that I did not cover in this page that you can find in my Inventory section or check Wicked Inventory section

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