The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is a children's novel written by L. Frank Baum and illustrated by W. W. Denslow. Originally published by the George M. Hill Company in Chicago on May 17, 1900, it has since been reprinted numerous times, most often under the name The Wizard of Oz, which is the name of both the 1902 stage play and the well-known 1939 film version, starring Judy Garland. The story chronicles the adventures of a young girl named Dorothy Gale in the Land of Oz, after being swept away from her Kansas farm home in a storm. Thanks in part to the 1939 MGM movie, it is one of the best-known stories in American popular culture and has been widely translated. Its initial success, and the success of the popular 1902 Broadway musical which Baum adapted from his original story, led to Baum's writing thirteen more Oz books. The exceptional success of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz resulted in the creation of many sequels. Baum wrote thirteen sequels to the novel. After he died in 1919, Baum's publishers delegated the creation of more sequels to Ruth Plumly Thompson who wrote 21. An original Oz book was published every Christmas between 1913 and 1942. By 1956, five million copies of the Oz books had been published in the English language, while hundreds of thousands had been published in eight foreign languages. List of OZ books: 1. The Wonderful Wizard of OZ 2. The Marvelous Land of OZ 3. Ozma of OZ 4. Dorothy and the Wizard in OZ 5. The Road to OZ 6. The Emerald City of OZ 7. The Patchwork Girl of OZ 8. Tik-Tok of OZ 9. The Scarecrow of OZ 10. Rinkitink in OZ 11. The Lost Princess of OZ 12. The Tin Woodman of OZ 13. The Magic of OZ 14. Glinda of OZ
For many of us, the adventures of Dorothy in Oz will forever be associated not with Judy Garland singing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" but with W. W. Denslow's exceedingly odd line drawings for the original editions of Baum's Oz series. The Viennese artist Lisbeth Zwerger, however, goes a long way toward providing a new and refreshed set of images for the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, and the humbug wizard. These illustrations are often cockeyed, with occasional realistic details thrown in, like a crow with a corncob in its beak in the first portrait of the Scarecrow. The characters have a poignance and oddity that escaped the makers of the Oz movie.