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Mirror Mirror: A Novel

by

Mirror Mirror: A Novel Cover

 

Staff Pick

Maguire's latest retelling of a classic fairy tale is Snow White set in Renaissance Italy and features Lucrezia Borgia as the wicked stepmother. Intriguing, surreal, exotic, and sensual, the author's style is mature, assured, and utterly engaging. This is not your Disney bedtime tale.
Recommended by Kathi, Powells.com

Review-A-Day

"Entertaining as all this is, it's not child's play. In the best sense, Mirror Mirror is a novel for adults that unearths our buried fascination with the primal fears and truths fairy tales contain. Through this forest of wry, sometimes bawdy humor, Maguire leaves a trail of profound reflections on the nature of identity, the persistence of love, the self-destruction of evil. Observing the last unicorn in the forest, the narrator laments, 'There was no place for much mystery in the world anymore,' but Maguire is busy making room for it." Ron Charles, The Christian Science Monitor (read the entire CSM review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The year is 1502, and seven-year-old Bianca de Nevada lives perched high above the rolling hills and valleys of Tuscany and Umbria at Montefiore, the farm of her beloved father, Don Vicente. But one day a noble entourage makes its way up the winding slopes to the farm — and the world comes to Montefiore.

In the presence of Cesare Borgia and his sister, the lovely and vain Lucrezia — decadent children of a wicked pope — no one can claim innocence for very long. When Borgia sends Don Vicente on a years-long quest, he leaves Bianca under the care — so to speak — of Lucrezia.

She plots a dire fate for the young girl in the woods below the farm, but in the dark forest salvation can be found as well...

A lyrical work of stunning creative vision, Mirror Mirror gives fresh life to the classic story of Snow White — and has a truth and beauty all its own.

Review:

"Wildly inventive...Maguire refreshes his source material capably....Almost everything works, in a pastiche that's a model of the form. Every bit as good as Wicked: wicked good, in fact." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

Review:

"The telling is sometimes too convoluted, with constantly switching viewpoints. But, like a Renaissance comedy, the wild story effectively captures the transcendent and the vulgar, beauty and beast." Booklist

Review:

"Maguire has a lock on clever, elaborate retellings of fairy tales....[W]ith his rich, idiosyncratic storytelling, Maguire restores the edge to an oft-told tale and imbues it with a strange, unsettling beauty." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"[D]ark and vivid....This is a great addition to the Maguire shelf." School Library Journal

Review:

"A brilliant achievement." Boston Herald

Review:

"The story may be familiar, but Maguire's telling is rich and strange. Full of colors and scents, gorgeous as an embroidered velvet cloak, his prose is simply beautiful and perfectly suited to its setting and times." Hartford Courant

Review:

"Mirror Mirror is probably close in spirit to what fairy tale pioneers like the Grimm brothers originally intended for their works, tales that illustrate, in an instructive and entertaining way, how the world actually behaves, no matter what century one happens to live in." Dallas-Ft. Worth Star Telegram

Review:

"It's Maguire's prose style that makes all this so intriguing. His descriptions are potent....Wry, sneaky and always picturesque, Maguire's writing weaves history and legend into a charming and effective pastiche." Seattle Times

Synopsis:

From the bestselling author of Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (debuting on Broadway this fall), Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister and Lost comes a master retelling of the Snow White story set in Renaissance Italy.

Synopsis:

“A brilliant achievement.”

—Boston Herald

 

“Entertaining…profound….A novel for adults that unearths our buried fascination with the primal fears and truths fairy tales contain.”
—Christian Science Monitor

 

Gregory Maguire, the acclaimed author who re-imagined a darker, more dangerous Land of Oz in his New York Times bestselling series The Wicked Years, offers a brilliant reinvention of the timeless Snow White fairy tale: Mirror Mirror. Setting his story amid the cultural, political and artistic whirlwind of Renaissance Italy—and casting the notorious Lucrezia Borgia as the Evil Queen—Maguire and Mirror Mirror will enthrall a wide array of book lovers ranging from adult fans of Harry Potter to readers of the sophisticated stories of Angela Carter.

About the Author

Gregory Maguire is the bestselling author of Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister, Lost, Son of a Witch, and Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, the basis for the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical of the same name. Maguire has lectured on art and culture at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and the DeCordova Museum, as well as at conferences at home and abroad. An occasional reviewer for the New York Times Book Review, he lives with his family in Massachusetts.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

crowyhead, September 26, 2006 (view all comments by crowyhead)
A fascinating retelling of Snow White. It's always interesting to have fairy tales re-cast in a specific time and place; it seems to dampen, but deepen, the fantastical elements. My only complaint is that I didn't really quite feel I'd engaged with any of the characters; some would offer brief moments where I would be totally engaged, but then the author would shift viewpoint, or the character would disappear from the story for a couple hundred pages (as in the case of the woodsman). While Maguire strayed from his previous trend towards making the villian of the story the hero (as in Wicked and Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister), Lucrezia Borgia, the "wicked queen" in this version, is still the most well-rounded of the characters. I found that I wanted her to get her comeuppance, but I was also most interested in the story when she was around.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(6 of 14 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780060988654
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Maguire, Gregory
Author:
by Gregory Maguire
Publisher:
William Morrow Paperbacks
Subject:
General
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
Fantasy - General
Subject:
Fairy Tales, Folklore & Mythology
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Fairy Tales, Folk Tales, Legends & Mythology
Subject:
Science Fiction and Fantasy-Fantasy
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade PB
Publication Date:
October 2004
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
9.29x6.02x.84 in. .81 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Featured Titles
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » Fantasy » General
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » Fantasy » Historical
History and Social Science » American Studies » Popular Culture
Humanities » Mythology » Folklore and Storytelling

Mirror Mirror: A Novel Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.95 In Stock
Product details 320 pages ReganBooks - English 9780060988654 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Maguire's latest retelling of a classic fairy tale is Snow White set in Renaissance Italy and features Lucrezia Borgia as the wicked stepmother. Intriguing, surreal, exotic, and sensual, the author's style is mature, assured, and utterly engaging. This is not your Disney bedtime tale.

"Review A Day" by , "Entertaining as all this is, it's not child's play. In the best sense, Mirror Mirror is a novel for adults that unearths our buried fascination with the primal fears and truths fairy tales contain. Through this forest of wry, sometimes bawdy humor, Maguire leaves a trail of profound reflections on the nature of identity, the persistence of love, the self-destruction of evil. Observing the last unicorn in the forest, the narrator laments, 'There was no place for much mystery in the world anymore,' but Maguire is busy making room for it." (read the entire CSM review)
"Review" by , "Wildly inventive...Maguire refreshes his source material capably....Almost everything works, in a pastiche that's a model of the form. Every bit as good as Wicked: wicked good, in fact."
"Review" by , "The telling is sometimes too convoluted, with constantly switching viewpoints. But, like a Renaissance comedy, the wild story effectively captures the transcendent and the vulgar, beauty and beast."
"Review" by , "Maguire has a lock on clever, elaborate retellings of fairy tales....[W]ith his rich, idiosyncratic storytelling, Maguire restores the edge to an oft-told tale and imbues it with a strange, unsettling beauty."
"Review" by , "[D]ark and vivid....This is a great addition to the Maguire shelf."
"Review" by , "A brilliant achievement."
"Review" by , "The story may be familiar, but Maguire's telling is rich and strange. Full of colors and scents, gorgeous as an embroidered velvet cloak, his prose is simply beautiful and perfectly suited to its setting and times."
"Review" by , "Mirror Mirror is probably close in spirit to what fairy tale pioneers like the Grimm brothers originally intended for their works, tales that illustrate, in an instructive and entertaining way, how the world actually behaves, no matter what century one happens to live in."
"Review" by , "It's Maguire's prose style that makes all this so intriguing. His descriptions are potent....Wry, sneaky and always picturesque, Maguire's writing weaves history and legend into a charming and effective pastiche."
"Synopsis" by , From the bestselling author of Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (debuting on Broadway this fall), Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister and Lost comes a master retelling of the Snow White story set in Renaissance Italy.
"Synopsis" by ,

“A brilliant achievement.”

—Boston Herald

 

“Entertaining…profound….A novel for adults that unearths our buried fascination with the primal fears and truths fairy tales contain.”
—Christian Science Monitor

 

Gregory Maguire, the acclaimed author who re-imagined a darker, more dangerous Land of Oz in his New York Times bestselling series The Wicked Years, offers a brilliant reinvention of the timeless Snow White fairy tale: Mirror Mirror. Setting his story amid the cultural, political and artistic whirlwind of Renaissance Italy—and casting the notorious Lucrezia Borgia as the Evil Queen—Maguire and Mirror Mirror will enthrall a wide array of book lovers ranging from adult fans of Harry Potter to readers of the sophisticated stories of Angela Carter.

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