We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Audiobook
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
Written by: 
L. Frank Baum
Narrated by: 
Anne Hathaway
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Audiobook

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Regular Price:$14.95
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Audible Editor Reviews

Anne Hathaway is nothing short of masterful in her narration of Baum’s beloved classic. As she guides listeners through the world of munchkins, winkies, and quadlings; witches; and the humbug Oz, Hathaway’s impressive vocal repertoire shines. As narrator, she is lithe yet precise; her voice sounds lilting or emphatic, as the story details require. In character, she is spectacular. Each character is filled with personality - a light-voiced Witch of the North; a brusque soldier at Oz’s palace; a monotone, robot-like Oz; and a usually cheerful and genuine Dorothy. The variety enriches the listening experience. Yes, one may know the story well, but Hathaway makes this recording a definitive one.

Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Nominee, Solo Narration - Female, 2013

One of the best-known stories in American culture, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz has stirred the imagination of young and old alike for over 100 years. Academy Award-winning actress Anne Hathaway (Rachel Getting Married, Alice In Wonderland), fresh from filming one of this year’s most anticipated films, The Dark Knight Rises, lends her voice to this uniquely American fairy tale.

Follow the adventures of young Dorothy Gale and her dog Toto as they get swept away into the magical land of Oz , where they encounter characters and places you may remember from the movie – and several more that never made it to the big screen – on an unforgettable journey to the Emerald City.

“It’s such a wonderful book and I was so happy to be a part of bringing it to life”, Ms. Hathaway said. “There are a lot of great voices in it. The more fun you have with it, the sillier and the more free you get with it, the better it is because it’s a story that can handle it. It’s amazing to be able to discover something new about something you feel you know so well.”

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is part of Audible’s A-List Collection, featuring the world’s most celebrated actors narrating distinguished works of literature that each star had a hand in selecting. For more great books performed by Hollywood’s finest, click here.

Public Domain (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“Anne Hathaway is nothing short of masterful in her narration of Baum’s beloved classic…As narrator, she is lithe yet precise; her voice sounds lilting or emphatic, as the story details require. In character, she is spectacular. Each character is filled with personality—a light-voiced Witch of the North; a brusque soldier at Oz’s palace; a monotone, robot-like Oz; and a usually cheerful and genuine Dorothy. The variety enriches the listening experience. Yes, one may know the story well, but Hathaway makes this recording a definitive one.” (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (3648 )
5 star
 (2048)
4 star
 (1090)
3 star
 (385)
2 star
 (73)
1 star
 (52)
Overall
4.4 (3316 )
5 star
 (1850)
4 star
 (986)
3 star
 (390)
2 star
 (60)
1 star
 (30)
Story
4.5 (3336 )
5 star
 (2331)
4 star
 (631)
3 star
 (219)
2 star
 (89)
1 star
 (66)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Tracet Hamden, CT, United States 01-24-16
    Tracet Hamden, CT, United States 01-24-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    265
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    214
    53
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    7
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Oh well"

    Remarkably, I never read the Oz books as a kid. Weird, I know, but somehow I never went there. (And truly, this is a weird thing. I read *everything*. Maybe The Wiz was too firmly engrained in my psyche as a movie to register that it was a book first? Or was it a shying away from some aspects of it which seemed too childish for me even as a child? Or was it simply that I never had a copy in the house and the library had much shinier and cooler books to draw my attention? No idea.) This was a freebie on Audible, bless their hearts, and it seemed like time.

    Oh well.

    Whether aspects of the story might have been too childish for me once upon a time, aspects of the storytelling certainly were listening to this. The silly voices Anne Hathaway provided became a little much at times; there is only so much time I am willing to spend listening to certain types of cartoony voices. And I confess, being used to the relative conciseness of the MGM version, I became impatient with the rather wandering way in which the actual story was spun out. I wonder if I would have liked this as a child. I wouldn't have been trying so hard to apply logic to it then, though I would still have been comparing it to the movie…

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jefferson 03-21-14
    Jefferson 03-21-14 Member Since 2010

    I love reading and listening to books, especially fantasy, science fiction, children's, historical, and classics.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2207
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    326
    299
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1324
    13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An Actress Performing or a Reader Reading?"

    Because I love the 1939 movie The Wizard of Oz and had listened to Anna Fields' Blackstone Audio (2001) fine reading of the original book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900), I was curious to try an audiobook version read by a popular and accomplished actress, and so listened to the Anne Hathaway "performs" The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (2011), for audible.com's "a-list" line of classic books read by popular actors.

    First, about the original novel itself, the story is light-hearted, with plenty of fantastic and appealing characters (like Dorothy's companions), exciting flare-ups of ultra-violence (like the orders and fates of the Wicked Witch's forty wolves, forty crows, and forty bees) ironic insights into human nature (like the pure Tin Woodman's mistaken belief that if he had a heart he would not need to be so careful to avoid hurting living beings because people with hearts naturally avoid hurting others), humorous lines (like when the Scarecrow asks the Lion if he has brains he answers "I suppose so. I've never looked to see"), and good themes for children (like personal hygiene is important and we all have the potential to develop the qualities we think we lack and just need to find the confidence and opportunities to use them). If you've only seen the movie, and if you like it, you should read or listen to the original book, because it's interesting to compare the similar and different points between them. The movie, for instance, stops about three-fifths of the way through the book, downplays the violence, increases Dorothy's age, and adds songs and dances, as well as the wonderful feature of some fantasy world characters having real world alter-egos.

    One feature of the Audible a-list audiobook that's convenient and nice is that the 24 chapters of the book are divided into 24 navigable chapters and Hathaway reads out the titles of the chapters after their numbers, while the Blackstone version has only five navigable super audiobook chapters, so that when you click the fast forward or rewind button you end up several chapters ahead or behind rather than just one, and Fields only reads out chapter numbers rather than titles and numbers together.

    Like many of the reviews posted on Audible, I have mixed feelings about Hathaway's reading. She mostly does a fine, fun job with the different characters' different voices. The Scarecrow is funny and scratchy (sure, he does sound a bit like a hyper Marge Simpson, but Marge's voice is not a bad one to recall); the Tin Woodman is sensitive; the Cowardly Lion deep and blustery and a little New York or New Jersey-ish; the Mouse Queen cute and squeaky; the Wicked Witch old and wicked; Oz feckless; Dorothy sweet. . . I suppose you could complain about her Stork sounding like a storky-valley girl, the pseudo-British King of the Flying Monkeys rolling too many of his Rs, the Guard of the Gates of the Emerald City sounding oddly Daffy Duckish (especially when he says "spectacles"), and the Hammer-Heads sounding a bit too much like the Scarecrow, but, hey, Hathaway does her best to give each character a distinctive feel, and I enjoyed most of them.

    The problem for me was her over-reading too many of the third person narrator's lines, becoming, for instance, too breathy, fast, and excited when reading exciting parts of the story. In Chapter 1 Dorothy and Toto have been carried up into the air in their house on the cyclone, and although at first the scene has been exciting and scary, with Hathaway (perhaps over-dramatically) inflecting her voice for greater urgency, one paragraph ends calmly with the cyclone carrying the house "miles and miles away as easily as you could carry a feather." When the next sentence begins, "It was very dark, and the wind howled horribly around her," Hathaway briefly resumes her hyper danger mode, even though that same sentence ends, "but Dorothy found she was riding quite easily," and its paragraph ends, "she felt as if she were being rocked gently, like a baby in a cradle," for which Hathaway uses an extra sweet calm mood. Her vocal mood shifts sound too much right next to each other, and a sentence that ends calmly should be read from the beginning calmly, even if the first phrase of the sentence indicates some horribly howling wind, because the context before and after that howling wind is not scary. In short, Hathaway over-reads much of the narration, which detracted from the listening experience, making me think at times, as some reviewers have said, of Anne Hathaway rather than of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

    Finally, it comes down to preference. If you like the reader of an audiobook to *perform* different voices and moods and so on like an actor (tellingly, the Audible title is "Anne Hathaway Performs The Wonderful Wizard of Oz"), you should listen to Hathaway. If you only want to hear a person with a pleasant voice, accurate pronunciation, and sensitive and smooth pace read a good book, you should listen to Anna Fields. Hathaway is strutting her actress stuff, mostly enjoyably (because she obviously enjoys the story), but although kids probably prefer her different character voices and high-tension narration, I prefer Anna Fields' more subtle differences between characters and more even-keeled and natural narrative voice.

    7 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher Savannah, GA, United States 03-30-12
    Christopher Savannah, GA, United States 03-30-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "What a phenomenal narrator!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommend this in a heartbeat. The story had gotten old for me after so many years but Anne manages to breathe life into the characters more so than any version of the movie I have ever seen.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The initial scene where they meet Oz. I don't know how she came up with that particular voice for him (apparently, she doesn't either if you've seen the video clip of her talking about doing the narration) but I think it fits the character well.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I certainly would have if I'd had the chance.


    Any additional comments?

    Give it a shot. You'll be surprised how much you enjoy a story you've probably already experienced numerous times.

    13 of 19 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Theodore Kingston, Jamaica 06-09-12
    Theodore Kingston, Jamaica 06-09-12

    "A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one." - Jojen Reed. #ADanceWithDragons

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3527
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    107
    103
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1247
    22
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Anne Hathaway... Saved this for me"

    Now that we have that out of the way... I won't spend much time on the story BUT... This is a jacked up children's book if it was meant to be one... For one they keep lopping off heads off of people! The 'Wizard of Oz' is at best a con-artist! And the characters are... let’s face it... gullible... Maybe I am reading too much into this story.. >_<

    Anne Hathaway though.... LOVE HER.... And thankfully she didn't massacre the book and did actually produce a performance worth 5 stars. To be honest, I changed my score from a 4 to a 5 stars because Anne actually got me through the book. I don't think anyone could make me be completely thrilled with the narration here but this is because I think the story was lacking so much (note also I am reviewing this right after listening to "Water for Elephants" and "Outlander" which are EXCELLENTLY written and even more EXCELLENTLY narrated). Even with the annoying squeaky voices (it does get annoying after the bazillion little person), Anne really kept me listening and I cut her slack for the squeaky voices because quite frankly, that would be how they sounded.

    I say this... Audible need to invite Anne Hathaway back to do a real book... and by a real book I mean a Jane Austen book! I think anything Jane Austen or even Phillipa Gregory (if we want to go more modern) would fit her.

    18 of 27 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anthony Chicago, IL, United States 04-01-13
    Anthony Chicago, IL, United States 04-01-13 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    9
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful story; terrible performance"

    This is simply a delightful and classic story that I and my children (ages 9 & 6) have enjoyed. If you've only seen the film, you should treat yourself to the novel - though it is admittedly difficult not to judge the book in light of the epic film.

    What I could not tolerate was Anne Hathaway's dreadful performance. Ideally the narration should complement the story, but not distract or steal from the author's words. Hathaway's performance is a complete distraction - to the point that you hope certain characters won't have anything else to say because you don't want to hear her needlessly over-the-top voicing. Why does the palace guard have a southern (US) accent? Why does another person have a French accent? It's all just too much.

    Do yourself a favor and pick from the 5 or so other versions of Baum's classic on Audible.

    10 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    UAQ Power UAQ, United Arab Emirates 04-06-12
    UAQ Power UAQ, United Arab Emirates 04-06-12 Listener Since 2006

    UAQ

    HELPFUL VOTES
    28
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    63
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "very amusing"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    mos def


    What did you like best about this story?

    Anne is amazing .. you almost live the story .. and her performance is so amusing I laughed so heartily at many many times


    What does Anne Hathaway bring to the story that you wouldn???t experience if you just read the book?

    her performance for sure .. so lively


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    yes .. when Anne was reading the tin mans parts .. she translates the feelings perfectly


    Any additional comments?

    highly recommended ..

    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Gano Clarkesville 07-31-13
    Michael Gano Clarkesville 07-31-13

    Husband, Father, Son.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    30
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great narrator and great story"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Heck yeah!!! It's a classic that everyone should read. Way different from the movie and so much better


    What did you like best about this story?

    That it was different from the movie.


    What does Anne Hathaway bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    She did a great job doing the different voices and acting them out through her words. It was just plain great


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No, not really just amazed me that it was different from the movie.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rachel Woodbridge, VA, United States 04-12-13
    Rachel Woodbridge, VA, United States 04-12-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    5
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Anne Hathaway ruined the story"
    What didn’t you like about Anne Hathaway’s performance?

    I am normally a *huge* Anne Hathaway fan, however, I felt she went way over the top dramatizing this performance. In scenes where absolutely nothing is happening, she starts gasping and dramatizing as if the world is coming to an end. She does this multiple times throughout the story in all of the wrong places. Also, nearly every character she did had a New York accent or a valley girl accent which just made this classic story sound ridiculous. Marge Simpson with a New York accent crawled into the scarecrows body, and I'm permanently scarred. lolNormally, I would enjoy her attempts to breathe new life into a classic story, but she went way overboard with this one and lost me. Even my 11 year old daughter thought the whole thing sounded odd and that the narrator was just distracting from the story. I think that's really the key to what went wrong - instead of presenting the story and letting it stand on its own merit, she tried to take center stage and failed.


    8 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristi Richardson Milwaukie, OR, United States 10-26-12
    Kristi Richardson Milwaukie, OR, United States 10-26-12

    An old broad that enjoys books of all types. Would rather read than write reviews though. I know what I like, and won't be bothered by crap.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    891
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    247
    230
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    87
    88
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The Wizard is a wizard!"
    If you could sum up The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in three words, what would they be?

    Dorothy sees Wizard!


    What did you like best about this story?

    This story is very different than the movie and stage play. There are a lot of different characters and more adventures for Dorothy and her friends that didn't make it to the movie. There are several sequels in this series and each story builds on the next. Very good!


    What three words best describe Anne Hathaway’s performance?

    Good first start.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Kansas vs. Oz?


    Any additional comments?

    I liked Anne Hathaway's performance for the most part. The only suggestions I would make is to leave out the valley girl character and the french maid accent. Doesn't fit in Oz.

    8 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ellie New york, Ny, United States 05-21-12
    Ellie New york, Ny, United States 05-21-12 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    52
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    109
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    5
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Story, AMAZING Reading!"

    I am probably one of the only children in America who never read The Wonderful Wizard of Oz as a child. So, as an adult, I figured it was time to experience it now. The story is a good one--very different from the movie, but fantastic and fun and complex in so many interesting ways. But the real stunner here is Anne Hathaway's reading of the story. She does a phenomenal job of bringing the different characters to life, all of them with fanciful, beautiful, spirited voices. I absolutely loved listening to her read this lovely story. I think her reading does an amazing job of making a story that seems more fitted to young people really wonderful and exciting for readers (and listeners) of all ages. Highly recommended.

    4 of 7 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.