L. Frank Baum – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Audie Award Nominee, Solo Narration – Female, 2013

One of the best-known stories in American culture, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz has stirred the imagination of young and old alike for over 100 years. Academy Award-winning actress Anne Hathaway (Rachel Getting Married, Alice in Wonderland, The Dark Knight Rises) lends her voice to this uniquely American fairy tale.

Follow the adventures of young Dorothy Gale and her dog Toto as they get swept away into the magical land of Oz , where they encounter characters and places you may remember from the movie – and several more that never made it to the big screen – on an unforgettable journey to the Emerald City.

Its such a wonderful book and I was so happy to be a part of bringing it to life, Ms. Hathaway said. There are a lot of great voices in it. The more fun you have with it, the sillier and the more free you get with it, the better it is because its a story that can handle it. Its amazing to be able to discover something new about something you feel you know so well.

Author: L. Frank Baum
Narrator: Anne Hathaway
Duration: 3 hours 49 minutes
Released: 12 Aug 2003
Publisher: Audible Studios
Language: English

User Review:

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AS a kid, the first thing I looked forward to after Christmas was The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. It was always aired in Feb., which was sweeps month. I did not know that, I just knew it was sometime after Christmas. It was a great musical and this is a great book. They differ some and are the same a lot. The musical gave the Wicked Witch of the West a huge part that she did not have in the book. It was interesting to see the differences and easy to see why certain changes were made. The book is more violent, with some head chopping going on, but not enough to make the whole book not worth reading. It was published in 1900 and was the best selling children’s book for two years.

Baum has an excellent imagination and I loved the ceramic people, which was not in the movie. There are lessons on courage, intelligence, tenderness, confidence and ambition, which children and adults of today can learn much.

Hathaway has taken a real beating by some reviewers. I did not always agree with her interpretations of the characters, (Valley girls did not exist when this was written) but I thought she brought life to the book. She kept it interesting. I much prefer a narrator that spices up the reading, as a reader who just mouths the words. Baum himself changed the book and characters in order to get it on Broadway. If he was alive today, I do not believe he would have a problem with his story being updated.

I also liked the book Wicked, which gives you the witches side of the story.