Everyone knows the L.Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, but not many people knew of the Wicked Witch of the West’s side of the story until Gregory Maguire decided to tell it. Maguire is known for retelling classic fairy tales, often from other characters’ points of view.
The story of Wicked is the story of Elphaba, a peculiar, misunderstood green-skinned girl who has grown up as anything but normal. She’s smart and perceptive, so it’s no surprise that she is accepted into Shiz, one of Oz’s most prestigious academies. As Elphaba comes into her own, she realizes that her definition of good and bad is not necessarily the Wizard’s definition of good and bad. She challenges the norm, along with some new friends — including a beautiful, blonde-haired girl named Galinda from the north — and a love interest. Wicked shows that there are definitely more than two sides to every story, and the side that was accounted by Dorothy and her friends might not necessarily have been the whole truth.
Maguire has done different retellings of Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella, Snow White, and others, but his Wicked series is my favorite. Not to mention how much I love the musical of the same title, which is based off of the first book! If you’re looking for a fantasy series that already feels familiar, then the Wicked series is one for you!