Title: The Wizard of Oz
Author: L.Frank Baum
Publisher: Penguin Group
Dorothy was a simple and optimistic girl living with her adoptive parents.They lived in Kansas. Dorothy was a talkative child as she had a pet dog, Toto, whose eye twinkled upon the world of Dorothy.
After being caught in a tornado,Dorothy and Toto were accidentally brought to a country, the Land of Oz. Her story there starts with meeting The Witch of North. The witch tells Dorothy that her house has just landed on and killed the Witch of East.The Witch of North acquainted Dorothy with the Land of Oz, there were four witches, two of whom were good witches. However, the witches who dwelt in the East and the West were wicked. She advises Dorothy to seek out the Great Wizard, Oz, who was living in the Emerald City to find a way back to her home. “Remember to follow the yellow brick road. It’ll lead you to the Emerald City,” the kind Witch says.
On the long journey, Toto isn’t the only comrade for Dorothy as she meets a Scarecrow, a Tin Woodsman and a Cowardly Lion who had longed for different things. The first comrade they meet was the Scarecrow, who accompanies the Dorothy hoping to fulfill his ambition to have a brain instead of straw.
The next is the tin woodsman. His desire is to be given a heart as he believes that love is the most valuable possession of all. The last dreamer they encounter is the Lion, who wishes to visit the Emerald City in order to gain the bravery that he believes he lacks. Despite their poor self-image, each of the trio seems to already have what they claim to lack. The scarecrow shows a thoughtful nature on the long trip; the tin-man shows his tender nature and the lion performs acts of courage that the bravest creature would be proud of.
When they finally reached their destination, The Emerald City, Oz ironically refuses to fulfill their hopes. Instead, he gives the dreamers another choice, to help him to kill the Witch of the West as a deal. However, Dorothy was neither an evil nor wicked girl. Then. unluckily, the girl is seized by the evil witch and was treated as slave. Unintentionally, the pure little girl kills the witch and took the Golden Hat, which has magical power, off from The Witch of West.
When they arrive at the Emerald City again, a horrible truth dashes their hopes. They find that Oz is only a common man who came from the same world as Dorothy. He is neither a wizard nor a magician. “I’m a humbug,” he confesses.In spite of this fact, the Oz claims his promises to the Lion, the Scarecrow and the Tin Woodsman have been kept.For the scarecrow, Oz gives him a brain which was mixed with pins and needles. Meanwhile, the Scarecrow was proud of his brand-new brain, which was actually made artificially. For the Tin Woodman, Oz puts a beautiful “heart”, which was made of entirely silk, into his chest. For the Lion, Oz instructs him to drink an unknown solution which he says will provide courage if it were inside the body.
Hopelessly, for Dorothy, Oz can do nothing but try to relieve her anxiety. Eventually, Dorothy and Toto find a way back to Kansas under the help of the good Witch of the South, Glinda, who revealeds the secret magical power of the silver shoes that Dorothy was wearing along the journey.
I bet that there will be no opposition to me if I say the book , The Wizard of Oz is suitable for all ages. With the readers of different ages having different lessons; to learn to love, to help, and to put in effort are lessons that can be learned by reading this meaningful story.
When I was reading the very first part of the story, I was thinking, “An adventure story again? I’ve had enough.” I could hardly concentrate on reading the story, for I thought that every adventure ends the same way. However, when I continued to read, I found that I was wrong absolutely. The plot is complicated and the addictive story line can easily lead you into the world of The Land Of Oz.When you are expecting that the dreamers could never success in achieving their desires, there was always a chance – if there is a beam of light in the dark- altering the situation to optimism and hopes. When you find that Dorothy and her companions were walking nearer and nearer to their destination; there always seems to be a trap that bars the company from following their dreams.
I have learned some valuable lessons from this story. First of all, friendship, which could not be missing from one’s life. It was a grueling, hard and tiresome journey for the little innocent girl, Dorothy. But what kept her going was her aspiration to get back to her home, Kansas and more importantly, several true friends and comrades. Nobody is perfect, and Dorothy and her company were not exceptions, for each of them having some shortcomings.
For Scarecrow, he did not have a brain.
For the Tin Woodman, he did not have a heart.
For the Lion, he did not have courage.
However, everyone was born to communicate and cooperate with the others. While everyone have some weaknesses, we can establish friendships with others, and they can help us overcome or compensate for our weakenesses. For Dorothy and Toto, the five of them formed a perfect party.
he second lesson I had was all about the phrase “ no pain, no gain”. When the Dreamers hoped to seek help from the Oz, the Oz refused. “Why should I do this for you?” quoted from the Oz “I never grant favours without some return.”At first, I thought that the Oz did have the responsibility to help the company, for he was the only one who had the power and ability to do so. However, by deeper thinking, I realized that one never has the absolute right to get something. “No pain. no gain” is a phrase we have heard since we were little children, and it has become a part of our life. If you were a farmer, what could you have for meals if you did not work day and night? If you were a student, how could you get goo marks if you did not try you best to finish the assignments? If you were Dorothy, how could you get the help from the Oz if you did not help deal with the Witch of the West?
Last but not least, I learnt about confidence. Do you remember how Oz helped to grant the wishes of the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman and the Lion? What he gave them were just man-made objects. And the Oz claimed that they were what the dreamers’ desired, a brain, a heart, and courage. However, the changes between their mind were very big. Why? That’s because of the self-confidence. And that’s the magic.The Scarecrow was originally thinking that he knew nothing and was always doing the wrong things. And when he had his brand-new “brain” , he felt like he knew everything in the whole wide world. The Tin Woodsman never thought he could love anyone. But after receiving the silk heart from Oz, he was nearly melted by the warmth and love between himself and his fellows.The Lion named himself as “ The Cowardly Lion”, thinking that he was lacking in courage, but after drinking the non-magical solution, he thought he was the King of the Beasts. In our life, we must have something brilliant; in our mind, we mustn’t stop underestimating ourselves. What we actually lack of is never intelligence or bravery, but confidence.
~by Sandy Lam (2E, 11/12)
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