L. Frank Baum: Creator of Oz

L Frank Baum Creator of Oz Since it was first introduced over a hundred years ago in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz L Frank Baum s world of Oz has become one of the most enduring and beloved creations in children s literature It h

  • Title: L. Frank Baum: Creator of Oz
  • Author: Katharine M. Rogers
  • ISBN: 9780312301743
  • Page: 298
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Since it was first introduced over a hundred years ago in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, L Frank Baum s world of Oz has become one of the most enduring and beloved creations in children s literature It has influenced numerous prominent writers and intellectuals, and become a lasting part of the culture itself.L Frank Baum was born in 1856 in upstate New York, the seventh cSince it was first introduced over a hundred years ago in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, L Frank Baum s world of Oz has become one of the most enduring and beloved creations in children s literature It has influenced numerous prominent writers and intellectuals, and become a lasting part of the culture itself.L Frank Baum was born in 1856 in upstate New York, the seventh child of a very successful barrel maker and later oil producer However, Baum s own career path was a rocky one Beginning as an actor, Baum tried working as a traveling salesman, the editor of a small town newspaper and the publisher of a trade journal on retailing, failing to distinguish himself in any occupation His careers either failed to provide a sufficient living for his beloved wife Maud and their children or were so exhausting as to be debilitating In the 1890 s, L Frank Baum took the advice of his mother in law, suffragist leader Matilda Gage, and turned his attention to trying to sell the stories he d been telling to his sons and their friends After a few children s books published with varying success, he published The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in 1900 and it quickly became a bestseller and has remained so ever since.In this first full length adult biography of Baum, Rogers discusses some of the aspects that made his work unique and has likely contributed to Oz s long lasting appeal, including Baum s early support of feminism and how it was reflected in his characters, his interest in Theosophy and how it took form in his books, and the celebration in his stories of traditional American values Grounding his imaginative creations, particularly in his fourteen Oz books, in the reality of his day, Katharine M Rogers explores the fascinating life and influences of America s greatest writer for children.

    One thought on “L. Frank Baum: Creator of Oz”

    1. I am a huge Wizard of Oz fan and was curious about the guy who wrote it. The book wasn't really cohesive and I wasn't able to read it straight through (I read 2 other books before finishing it). The book starts talking about Baum's life, then the books he wrote, followed by an extensive reconstruction of the characters in the Oz books; however it's not a cohesive story. I would have liked to understand better the philosophy that drove Baum and his choices.

    2. Absolutely loved this book. So sensitive to the meaning behind each Oz "novel." She treats Baum as if he is an important American author - as he is but has never received that kind of recognition. Now I have to immediately go back and reread those glorious Oz books that lit up my childhood.

    3. Interesting to me because I love Baum's OZ books (all 14 of them) and it was fun to find out about the kind of man behind these stories. However, because I love the children's stories so much, for their imagination and wonder, it was a little hard to wade through all the literary analysis of his books, characters, and ways of writing. It kind of took a little of the pure joy away, but it also made me want to read them again just to have a fun way to escape into a clever land of make-believe. It [...]

    4. An engaging and detailed biography of the man who wrote the Wizard of Oz books - a man who was outgoing, gregarious, endlessly positive in outlook but apparently unsuited to any other work. It also looks at what separates his work from that of other children's authors and the influence the books have had on popular culture. A very interesting read. - BH.

    5. Interesting story about the man behind the books. Removes a bit of the sparkle when you realize his authorship is as much about making money as it is about storytelling. However, he is a man of his times. Given the financial hardships he faced he can be forgiven for worrying about money. The last three novels written from his deathbed can be forgiven for their lack of polish. The large number of different careers foreshadows the path we may be on in the gig economy of the future.

    6. This is a matter-of-fact but warmly sympathetic literary biography - that is, discussing both the author and his major works - of L. Frank Baum, best known for writing the Wizard of Oz. I haven't read the other major biographies of Baum, and so can't compare this book to those. The book is most likely to be appreciated by people who want a thorough sketch of Baum's life and work either because they have a broader interest in fantasy or children's literature from the time, or they have enjoyed th [...]

    7. Yes, this book was a bit pedantic, but once I found a way to read quickly, it was pretty interesting. Didn't finish it, and was not as interested in the minutiae of the later books he wrote. Liked Frank Baum, appreciated the political and sociological allegoric nature of his books that was revealed. Enjoyed the parts about his family life the best.

    8. At this point, lots of this was repeat information for me, but this was a nice presentation of it and discussed the major period of his life and works.

    9. This book was way too dry for me. I am sorry to say that I didn't even finish it. There are better biographies out there over. Baum is a fascinating person and deserved better in my opinion.

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