Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of The West is a parallel novel by Gregory Maguire. Based upon the writings of L. Frank Baum, it is a revisionist look at the land and characters of Oz, best known from Baum's 1900 novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and the 1939 MGM film The Wizard of Oz. Wicked, published in 1995 with illustrations by Douglas Smith, presents events, characters and situations from Baum's books and the film in new and surprising ways.
Unlike the popular 1939 movie and Baum's writings, this novel is not directed at children. It contains language and content which catches some readers by surprise. Wicked, the hit Broadway musical based upon the novel, is also very different in tone from Maguire's book. A sequel to Wicked, entitled Son of a Witch, was published in fall of 2005.
As of October 2006, Gregory Maguire is working on a third novel in the Wicked Cycle, The Watermark, it was formerly titled A Cowardly War.