Wednesday, August 04, 2004


  • Wicked by Gregory Maguire

    Rating: ***½

    Strange, really bizarre novel. Fascinating fantasy, provoking moral discussion, huge scope, and meticulous structure, but just a lot to take in. It was a truly original, literate, seductive read. Maybe I've wandered a bit from the literary milieu, but this is not fluffy entertainment. I guess you can take the face value of the plot and characters, but that would cheapen the experience of the book because there is more fathoms deep. This is the kind of book that begs to be read again as there is a lot to digest in one go. Allegory and some satire - unfortunately, my least favorite lit devices - veil issues such as racism, absolutism, religion, power, love, and the meaning of good and evil, naturally. Hello, Glinda the Good and the Wicked Witch of the West? While the writing easily drew me into the story, I didn't read it continuously and lost track of the huge web of connections. I forgot much of the detail in the previous sections that trigger or shadow later events. It's very readable - so much so that when I would flip back to refresh my memory, I'd find myself getting immersed in the earlier part. I need to read this again sometime when I have time to be serious about it. It's unsettling in a good way and I know I missed some key points this time. It's odd that this has been turned into a big Broadway musical. Their adaptation is nothing like the book. It's more like Wicked Lite, very condensed and simplistic with only superficial quirkiness. I still like the music, though, which is why I read this sooner rather than later.

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