Tuesday, May 01, 2018

This Week's Oz Short Story

Wow, 1992 already? This reread of Oziana is starting to zip along pretty well! So, the first story in this issue is "A Christmas Tree for Dorothy" by Jane Albright, with illustrations by Eric Shanower. Dorothy is lamenting to Billina about some of the simple joys of the holidays back in Kansas, not at all like the continuous parties-at-the-drop-of-a-hat in the Emerald City. The Scarecrow and Tin Woodman overhear, and decide to recreate an old-fashioned Kansas Christmas tree for her—but this being Oz, it doesn't go quite as imagined! The Sawhorse and Highboy (the title character of The Giant Horse of Oz) get involved, and Dorothy's two old friends end up high in the night sky gathering stars. Once they get back to the Emerald City, they find Santa Claus, having already gotten word of their plan, already at work. All of them work together to finish decorating the tree. Dorothy, once she wakes up, is naturally astonished, but delighted at the surprise. This is a fun little slice-of-Ozian-life story that often works really well in Oziana, and also shows how different Oz is from the Great Outside World. Shanower's illustrations are different from his usual style here, using a technique that could be compared to pointillism, but they are still charming, and add an appropriately dreamlike quality to the art.

No comments: