Sunday, April 06, 2014

The Latest Oz Reading

Now that my weekends are back to being relatively normal, I've started reading Oz short stories again. Today, it was another tale from Oz Reimagined, "The Boy Detective of Oz" by Tad Williams. This is set in Williams' Otherland universe (its version of Oz was first visited in River of Blue fire), which I'm glad I was vaguely familiar with. However, this story is also nicely self-contained, so you don't have to know about Otherland to get into this. Orlando Gardiner was once a real boy, but when he died prematurely his consciousness lived on in a huge series of realistic simulated worlds, created by the wealthy as a place to play. Orlando is called into Kansas to figure out what's been going on since it's latest reboot, and finds that a new version of Oz is superimposing itself onto the place. Orlando also must deal with the mystery of Omby Amby's missing head. He's not exactly dead, but he can't do much without his head, either. Orlando talks to the Scarecrow, Tin Woodman, Cowardly Lion, and Wizard during his investigation, but it's the Glass Cat who proves to be the key to solving this mystery. This one just never quite seemed to gel for me, and I wasn't terribly interested in what was happening. Still, the final solution is neat and ties things up nice, while leaving the door open for further adventures. (Seriously, are they already planning volume 2 that's all sequels to these stories?)

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