Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (Hardcover)

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West By Gregory Maguire Cover Image


Soon to be a major motion picture starring Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande

A giftable, special 25th anniversary hardcover edition of the beloved multi-million-copy-bestselling novel and basis of the Tony Award–winning musical—including a new essay from Gregory Maguire on the nature of fantasy, “The World at Hand, the World Next Door.” Perfect for Wicked fans!

With millions of copies in print around the world, Gregory Maguire’s Wicked is established not only as a commentary on our time but as a novel to revisit for years to come. Wicked relishes the inspired inventions of L. Frank Baum’s 1900 novel, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, while playing sleight of hand with our collective memories of the 1939 MGM film starring Margaret Hamilton (and Judy Garland). In this fast-paced, fantastically real, and supremely entertaining novel, Maguire has populated the largely unknown world of Oz with the power of his own imagination. 

Years before Dorothy and her dog crash-land, another little girl makes her presence known in Oz. This girl, Elphaba, is born with emerald-green skin—no easy burden in a land as mean and poor as Oz, where superstition and magic are not strong enough to explain or overcome the natural disasters of flood and famine. Still, Elphaba is smart, and by the time she enters Shiz University, she becomes a member of a charmed circle of Oz’s most promising young citizens.

But Elphaba’s Oz is no utopia. The Wizard’s secret police are everywhere. Animals—those creatures with voices, souls, and minds—are threatened with exile. Young Elphaba, green and wild and misunderstood, is determined to protect the Animals—even if it means combating the mysterious Wizard, even if it means risking her single chance at romance. Ever wiser in guilt and sorrow, she can find herself grateful when the world declares her a witch. And she can even make herself glad for that young girl from Kansas. 

Recognized as an iconoclastic tour de force on its initial publication, the novel has inspired the blockbuster musical of the same name—one of the longest-running plays in Broadway history. Popular, indeed. But while the novel’s distant cousins hail from the traditions of magical realism, mythopoeic fantasy, and sprawling nineteenth-century sagas of moral urgency, Maguire’s Wicked is as unique as its green-skinned witch. 

About the Author

Gregory Maguire is the New York Times bestselling author of the Wicked Years, a series that includes Wicked—the beloved classic that is the basis for the blockbuster Tony Award–winning Broadway musical of the same name—Son of a WitchA Lion Among Men, and Out of Oz. His other adult works include the Another Day series; A Wild Winter Swan; HiddenseeAfter AliceConfessions of an Ugly StepsisterLost; and Mirror Mirror. He lives with his family in New England.

Praise For…

"Maguire did something truly remarkable with this novel, in managing to inhabit, enlarge, deepen and find new dimensions in a world that had been invented by another writer, and in doing so make something entirely new. It’s an astonishing achievement." — Philip Pullman

"Gregory gets the complications and uniqueness of women very well." — Kristen Chenoweth

“At the heart of this remarkable, unforgettable novel is a wildly original premise-- one that only a writer with Gregory Maguire’s intellect and daring could have dreamed up: that the Wicked Witch of the West was a real woman, with an actual name, and her own story to tell. It was radical when Gregory first wrote it, and remains radical. It has the power to reshape one’s view of the world.” — Winnie Holzman, co-writer of Wicked: The Musical

“Long before there was any thought of a musical, I read Wicked. I felt a quiet joy that sisterhood had made its way to the Yellow Brick Road. What happens when a witch, green or otherwise, gets to tell her own story instead of being vilified and misrepresented by dominant cultural authority? We witches know how that turns out!” — Holly Near

“I knew that Gregory Maguire had come up with a genius idea the moment I heard about Wicked. It’s a book that has changed a lot of lives, including mine.” — Stephen Schwartz, composer and lyricist of Wicked: The Musical

Product Details
ISBN: 9780062853196
ISBN-10: 0062853198
Publisher: William Morrow
Publication Date: October 13th, 2020
Pages: 448
Language: English