Tik-Tok of Oz (Dover Children's Classics) Paperback – Illustrated, 28 Mar 2003
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Introduces Ann Soforth, Queen of Oogaboo, whom Tik-Tok, the clockwork man, assists in conquering the Nome King.
About the Author
Best known as the author of the Wizard of Oz stories, L. Frank Baum (1856-1919) wrote many other fantasy novels, in addition to poems, short stories, and scripts for stage and screen.
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The plot, I must admit, is quite reminiscent of "Ozma of Oz" -- a girl and a mortal animal wash up on the shores of some fairyland, encounter the man Tik-Tok and find themselves trapped in a battle with the king of the Nomes. It has been said,in fact, that the plot of this novel came when Baum converted "Ozma" into a stage play, then converted the stage play back into a novel.
However, the book itself is still quite delightful. We don't meet too many really interesting new characters in this book -- not as many as most Oz books, in fact -- but it no longer follows the tired "someone tries to get to the Emerald City and meets interesting creatures along the way" formula that began in the very first book and crippled several books after "Ozma."
Tititi-Hoochoo and Quox the Dragon stand out as the new characters, and it is the sequences featuring them that I find most entertaining. Kaliko and Ruggedo in the Nome Kingdom again draw a grin from me, and the final few pages have a laugh-out loud moment that must have come when someone pointed out an inconsistency in the Oz books that Baum had to suddenly explain away.
"Tik-Tok of Oz" may not be the best of the Oz books, but it's probably the funniest, and it's certainly one of my favorites.