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Gregory Maguire’s “Wicked Evening” to Benefit Camden Public Library November 21

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A “Wicked Evening” with Gregory Maguire November 21

Gregory Maguire rewrote the famous Oz legend from the point of view of the witch Elphaba, in Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West. Maguire’s “Wicked” series sold over a million books, and has been turned into the fabulously successful “Wicked: The Musical.” The musical is celebrating a ten-year run on Broadway this year.

Gregory Maguire will present “A Wicked Evening” at the Camden Opera House at 7:00 pm on Thursday, November 21, to benefit the Camden Public Library. Tickets are $15, or $25 for the admission ticket plus a copy of the book Wicked and the book-signing reception following the talk. Tickets are available at the Camden Public Library and at the library’s website, www.librarycamden.org.

The social strife described in the Wicked years indicates that the Oz series and the Wicked series are set in similar but distinctly separate visions of Oz. “It also sets the reader thinking about what it really is to be wicked, and whether good intentions with bad results are the same as bad intentions with bad results,” says Wikipedia. The novel presents events, characters, and situations from Baum’s books and the film in new ways, with many differences between the series and the Wicked Years. The novel is a political, social, and ethical commentary on the nature of good and evil and takes place in The Land of Oz in the years leading to Dorothy’s arrival. The story centers on Elphaba, the misunderstood green-skinned girl who grows up to become the notorious Wicked Witch of the West. Gregory Maguire fashioned the name of Elphaba from the initials of Lyman Frank Baum, L-F-B.

Since the publication of his first novel in 1978, Gregory Maguire has been a popular speaker at schools, bookstores, and conferences all across the United States. Nearly all of his presentations, for children and adults alike, touched at least in part on the experiences Mr. Maguire had in his formative years. The Wicked series appeals to adults and young adults. He is a founder and codirector of Children’s Literature New England, Incorporated, a non-profit educational charity established in 1987. Mr. Maguire is also a contributor to Am I Blue?: Coming Out From the Silence, a collection of short stories for gay and lesbian teenagers.