To Behoove Elphalba’s Character

+ enlarge

To Behoove Elphalba’s Character
Ex Libris Book Review
Gregory Maguire, Author

How did the Wicked Witch of the West from Frank Baum’s Oz stories get to be so wicked? On the other hand, Gregory Maguire tells us his version of her story in Wicked. The author of Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister, Maguire seems to revel in turning our beloved fairy tale upside down, and having us rethink our cherished notions of absolute good and evil. I personally believe that The Wicked Witch wasn’t born a witch nor born wicked. In Maguire’s delightful read, we learn of Glinda’s (supposedly the Good Witch in the story) obsession with status to tote and fashion; and, the Wizard’s inhumane tendencies, the friendships/loves/ of the little green Elphalba, and evidently the story’s moral center, which is ultimately destroyed by innocent (?) Dorothy. Maguire’s version seems to be more real and more like transparent as we or the life we know and familiar of, even today. Looks like there’s always a different twist or side this story. A great read from start to finish. I could not put the book down. I decided that I am not letting go of this book.

Out of a web-review by Elise of, Elise relates the following excerpt /and to include the many vivid description of one of many exclamations from readers, fans, bloggers, twitters, etc. Elise found this Maguire’s version an interesting read also. “The reader similarly acclaimed that Gregory Maguire was indeed a daring agent provocateur of one of the world’s literary finest. It is how Maguire tells a story.”

That’s right; Maguire makes you think! He makes you brain accelerate to a mode like: what is he talking about! Nonetheless, I was drawn to a distinguishable feature in this amazing novel. It is Alive! The fabric of the novel reminds us of life’s twisted and knotted mass of threads—weaving through folk’s religious practices, goals, dreams, aspirations, vulnerabilities, brokenness, shortcomings, just-being-in-the-wrong-place/time, and even family anger or squabbles. Oh, snuck-in some bad-mouthing with-in family structures, misconceptions, and rumors as well. Yet, not too many folks could have broken away from any of these social stigma and maladies even if they happen to alight a broomstick or not! Think. Moreover, imagine yourselves as all green and witchy like Elphalba. Consequently, let us read a portion out of Chapter twelve. We find Elfie recalling her mother’s dream. She quotes: “the world around her was simply merciless—everything flickered like a glittering candle, but more harshly more stridently.” I presume that this scenario contributed to Elphie’s green suit. Interestingly, to behoove Elphalba’s character one excerpt from the book took my breath away. Page 374 reads about the “dwarf” (the guardian of the Grimerie or the Book). I believe I find the dwarf’s witticism quite transparent in most folks (including me). Thus, the dwarf spoke to Elphalba: “for you are neither this nor that; you were always drawn to the composite creatures, the broken, and disassembled.” Do you see yourself in these lines? Or, do you at one time believed what everything everybody says to you? Now, does this sound just like Dorothy? Or, did I hear somebody said, “Pig spittle?”

I told you this book is ALIVE!


Loading comments...