**Warning! If you haven’t read Dorothy Must Die which is the first book in the trilogy by Danielle Paige, there will be spoilers ahead. You can read my review of the first book instead if you haven’t started the series yet!**
The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige is the second book in the Dorothy Must Die trilogy. I’ll admit that I picked it up before I became aware of all the drama surrounding the author, but after loving the first book so much I felt like I should continue. Plus, at 293 pages it’s a really quick read. Unfortunately I wasn’t ever able to get into this book like I had the first one. The story was not anywhere near as engaging and there were changes in storytelling that took away from the overall enjoyment. Womp womp.
The only reason I didn’t give this book 1 stars on my goodreads rating is because I didn’t see the ending coming and there’s potential for the third book to save this series if goes back to the style of Dorothy Must Die. The story continues in Oz with Amy Gumm searching for the missing members of The Revolutionary Order of the Wicked while plotting to steal the remaining assets (the Scarecrow’s brain and the Lion’s courage) from Dorothy’s inner circle of henchmen. Throughout the book, Amy becomes increasingly afflicted and controlled by dark magic. Some of her allies even speculate that it’s the same dark magic that corrupted Dorothy. Amy lost some of her sass from the first book and she also gets little too boy crazy. We do get to see more of Ozma who still doesn’t make much sense. My main issue with this book is that it didn’t feel like anything really happened until the last chapter. The characters were mostly mosying along through Oz without any events furthering the story.
What drew me to this series initially is my love of Oz so the setting of the story is appealing. I particularly enjoyed reading about the rainbow area and the bubbly ruler within it and I loved how she had a faux unicorn as a pet. I also enjoyed the Island of Lost Things and I thought that was a fun addition to the world. I’m not positive if it exists in previous Oz lore but it felt like it belonged in the world. The end of the story is a completely unexpected twist but it led to some pacing issues in the early stages of the story and hindered its development.
Final Thoughts: The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige is the continuation of Dorothy Must Die. The story is not as likable as the first and the plot drags until the last chapter. While the ending is an unexpected twist, it’s not enough to make up for the lack of story development in the first 90% of the book. The main character Amy reads differently than she did in the first installment and we see much less of her original allies and the characters she’s trying to pursue so she can take down Dorothy.
In this dark, high-octane sequel to the New York Times bestsellingDorothy Must Die, Amy Gumm must do everything in her power to kill Dorothy and free Oz.
To make Oz a free land again, Amy Gumm was given a mission: remove the Tin Woodman’s heart, steal the Scarecrow’s brain, take the Lion’s courage, and then Dorothy must die…
But Dorothy still lives. Now the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked has vanished, and mysterious Princess Ozma might be Amy’s only ally. As Amy learns the truth about her mission, she realizes that she’s only just scratched the surface of Oz’s past—and that Kansas, the home she couldn’t wait to leave behind, may also be in danger. In a place where the line between good and evil shifts with just a strong gust of wind, who can Amy trust—and who is really Wicked? (via Goodreads)