I have recently finished two books in the last two months, Confessions of a Shopaholic and Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West.
I never had an interest to read Confessions, but I was at McKays Bookstore late one night and saw it in pristine condition for less than $6, and the pretty pink cover was too hard to pass up. While reading it, however, there were many times where I just wanted to jump into the story and shake Miss Bloomwood for a good while to get some sense into her. I mean, STOP ALL THAT SPENDING!!! :)
Honestly, the story did not get really interesting until about Chapter 18, which was more than three-fourths into the novel. Yet, because I like to read books in a series, I went to Half.com and bought the second and third books. That was before I was too deep into the first one to know better.
Then in late December I started Wicked. I really love the original Oz story (not the movie because there are very important differences) and was thrilled to learn of an extension in the land of Oz.
When I started the novel, I will admit, it was kind of weird. The story begins with an odd green-skinned baby named Elphaba who has razor-sharp teeth and has to be bandaged up so she doesn't bite her arms and hands. Strange, yes, but if you have read anything else by L. Frank Baum, that's par for the course in the wonderful land of Oz. :)
Wicked has definitely made me see Oz in a different light, and I mostly see Elphaba, the misunderstood green-skinned girl, in a whole different way than the black-garbed monster who screams, "I'll get you, my pretty, and your little dog, too!"
A must-read for Oz fans. :)