Nov 26, 2010

Chapter 3 The Flight of the Fugitives

Clever Tip decided to run away after he had thought about it many times. I think running away was appropriate, but I'm not sure about him taking the Powder of Life for a self-serving reason without asking. Moreover, Tip took Jack Pumpkinhead with him and gave another self-serving reason for it...He's just a thief, isn't he?

Though Tip had only ever lived with Mombi who had few relationships with other people, he knew about Oz quite well. Who taught him that? Mombi? Well, the village people might have sometimes cared for him.

Everyone in Oz seemed to know that the Gread Wizard Oz was a humbug because even Tip who lived in a very rural area knew it. However, the Wizard didn't seem to be hated or begrudged at all. People were satisfied by the fact that his successor, the Scarecrow, ran the country very well, weren't they? They don't seem to remember what happened in the past. It's no use. The present is the most important. That's very ozzy, isn't it?:)

I learned one thing about a familiar English expression.
When the Winkie people asked the Tin Woodman to be their ruler and the Emerald City people asked the Scarecow, "invite" was used. I knew the word only for asking someone for dinner or a party.

Chapter2:The Marvelous Powder of Life

If I had the Powder of Life, I would have wanted to use it at least once. I probably would have thought again and again what I should have sprinkled it onto. The powder's magic works for eternity. "The thing" is able to live forever. Unless I think really about it, it could cause many troubles.

Mombi was very wicked, but she looked just like a cheerful grandma, judging from how she was very delighted when Jack Pumpkinhead came alive.

> Old Mombi danced around him, frantic with delight.
> Then she threw her stick into the air and caught it as it came down; and she hugged herself with both arms, and tried to do a step of a jig; and all the time she repeated, rapturously:"He lives!—he lives!—he lives!"

When she realized that Tip had been watching her uncharacteristical excitement, she felt very embarrassed, I think. It was natural for her to be mad at Tip to hide her embarrassment, wasn't it?;P

Though Mombi's threat worked because Tip was small, someday we know that the time will end soon. Before it becomes too late, to transform Tip from a boy to a marble stone might be a good idea!;P

Of course, Tip didn't want to be transformed at all...what was he thinking while gazing the flames at the fireplace?....

By the way, I didn't know that the steps to making magic potions is called the "recipe". It sounds like cooking:) I can't help imagining something delicious:)

Nov 17, 2010

Chapter1:Tip Manufactures a Pumpkinhead

Well, I'm going to start reading the second book.

First of all, I'll tell you about Mombi. After the Wicked Witch of the West died, Mombi was one of the worst but most popular villains in this series. However, surprisingly, now I feel sympathy for her somehow. I wonder if it's because I'm raising children too. After Tip grew up, she used him for various chores, however, no matter how mean she was to him, I can't help thinking it must have been very tough for her to raise a child from a baby to a boy at her age. In the previous year, when he had a high fever, she must have nursed him even though it was not enough.

The pink vest with white dots, the red shirt, and the purple trousers, which became Jack Pumpkinhead's clothes later, were Mombi's belongings. Why did she have them? What if she kept them for the precious memory with someone? As tall Jack Pumpkinhead was able to wear them, they could be for men, couldn't they? So...the man who wore them could imagination is fired up.... Oops, I'm going too far;)

Tip, though I can just say "that's a boy" and it might sound nice, often skips his chores, does mischief, and apparently never has even a little respect for Mombi. If I were her, I would be mad at him!

Well, Jack Pumkinhead's body is hollow. It's made of a sheet of thick bark. His legs are made of saplings trimmed of the twigs and leaves. Then, above his body, his head is a big heavy pumpkin. Though it is hollowed out, that must be unstable and very risky!;P

The Land of Oz

The second book of Oz series.

The title is "The Land of Oz" now. It used to be "The Marvelous Land of Oz". The Japanese title "Ozu no niji no kuni" means "The Rainbow Country of Oz". Why did they choose the word "rainbow"? Someone said that it might have been taken from the song "Over the Rainbow" from the MGM movie. I think that guess is probably right.

Many new characters appear in this book. They become important and popular in the later books.

Nov 15, 2010

The Wizard of Oz:overview

At last, I've finished the first book.

Though I read the sequels many times, I didn't reread the first book because it is the most famous and I thought I knew the story very well. I've learned that I had many delusions. Was I remembering the movie instead of the book?

Dorothy, I thought, was cheerful ,positive and active, however she is actually rather passive. She drifts as she goes instead of carving her own destiny.

I was surprised that the Wicked Witch of the West was weaker than I remembered. I knew she was scared of water, of course. I didn't remember that she was also scared of darkness. Well, that is the most inconvenient weakness for witches, isn't it?

Chapter24:Home Again

I came to the last chapter at last!:) Aunt Em hugged Dorothy, and the story ended happily.

Dorothy's famous ending phrase was "Oh, Aunt Em! I'm so glad to be at home again!" in this book. In the movie, it was "There is no place like home!" They have same meanings but the words themselves are different.

It didn't mention at all whether Aunt Em believed Dorothy's words that she was in Oz. In the movie "Return to Oz", Dorothy was sent to the asylum because Aunt Em and Uncle Henry didn't believe her story. How about it in the original story? Well, we'll be able to see it in the later books.

Chapter23 Glinda Grants Dorothy's Wish

Finally, Glinda appeared. Many princesses apprear in Oz but Glinda is just a good witch. Princess Glinda would have been great, though, she has authority not because she is from a royal family but because she has excellent magic skills and inner beauty, I think...that's important...isn't it?

In later books, she is called "Glinda, the Good Sorceress." So, I thought a white magic user was a sorceress and a black magic user was a witch. But I was wrong. In this book, Glinda is called the Good Witch.

Even the good witch told Dorothy that she had to give the witch the golden cap in return for getting an answer about how to go back to Kansas. Everybody says "give and take." Of course, Glinda doesn't use the cap only for herself, though.

Dorothy easily accepted the words from her companions in turn; "If I hadn't met you, our wishes couldn't have come true." Then, she said "This is all true." I think this part is very American. If she is a Japanese, she would say like "No, not at all. You did it by yourselves. You helped me."

In the end, they said a teary farewell each other, then, Dorothy went back to Kansas. Of course, with Toto.

Chapter22 The Counrty of Quadlings

They at last arrive in Quadling Country, despite running into some trouble with the Hammerheads.

The Tin Woodman was the one who thought up to call the Flying Monkeys. I for some reason thought that it was the Scarecrow, but it wasn't. Don't you think it would have been a good chance for the Scarecrow to show off his brains?

The Flying Monkeys carried them safely to the Quadling. Hummm, maybe they should have just asked the Monkeys when they left the Emerald City;) Anyway, Dorothy had already called the monkeys three times, using up all her chances.

Though it first seemed like the Quadling was an uncivilized land full of strange people, it turned out that they were short, plump, and friendly people after all, just like the Munchkins. I don't know where that thought came from. Maybe from "Wicked"? Indeed, they welcomed Dorothy's company and gave them cakes and cookies.

There pretty girls stood in front of Glinda's palace guarding the gate. Even in the Emerald City, there was only one gate guard,...Could it be that Glinda's palace has many visitors? Or maybe it's because the palace is so near the border that it needs such heavy guarding.