Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister: A Novel by Gregory Maguire

By Gregory Maguire

Is this new land a spot the place magics rather happen?

From Gregory Maguire, the acclaimed writer of Wicked, comes his much-anticipated moment novel, a super and provocative retelling of the undying Cinderella tale.

In the lives of kids, pumpkins can become coaches, mice and rats into human beings.... once we develop up, we research that it's way more universal for humans to show into rats....

We all have heard the tale of Cinderella, the attractive baby solid out to slave one of the ashes.But what of her stepsisters, the homely pair exiled into ignominy via the celebrity in their beautiful sibling? What destiny came about these untouched by means of attractiveness . . . and what curses followed Cinderella's beautiful looks?

Extreme good looks is an affliction

Set opposed to the wealthy backdrop of seventeenth-century Holland, Confessions of an unpleasant Stepsister tells the tale of Iris, an not likely heroine who unearths herself swept from the lowly streets of Haarlem to an odd global of wealth, artifice, and ambition. Iris's course fast turns into intertwined with that of Clara, the mysterious and unnaturally appealing lady destined to turn into her sister.

Clara was once the prettiest baby, yet used to be her lifestyles the prettiest tale?

While Clara retreats to the cinders of the kin fire, burning all thoughts of her earlier, Iris seeks out the shadowy secrets and techniques of her new household--and the treacherous fact of her former life.

God and devil snarling at one another like dogs.... Imps and fairy godmotbers attempting to undo each one other's paintings. How we strive to pin the realm among contrary extremes!

Far greater than a trifling fairy-tale, Confessions of an unsightly Stepsister is a singular of good looks and betrayal, phantasm and knowing, reminding us that deception might be unearthed--and love unveiled--in the main unforeseen of places.

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Sample text

The hunchbacks, the split-skulls, Dame Handelaers with her horrible donkey jaw. The other side of revelation! Through that door, should you want to see. I’ll unlock it for you. ” He points his brush at the door and raises his eyebrows in a question. Iris doesn’t even dare to look at the door, much less ask for it to be unlocked. She doesn’t want to see. She wraps her thin arms around her thin chest, and asks herself again: Where have we come to? The Master turns back to his canvas. “And I’ll paint that changeling child yet,” he says grimly.

He shifts onto larger canvases. qxd 2/12/2003 8:39 AM Page 46 C O N F E S S I O N S O F A N U G LY ST E P S I ST E R with oil so as to keep them wet and malleable days at a time. Every afternoon when the light changes, though—he can sense it to the instant, by some canniness that Iris can’t fathom—he throws down his brushes and sends Iris from the room. Sometimes Caspar hangs about in the shadows of the studio. From him Iris picks up the habit of watching how the Master works. How he pets a surface with the softest of splayed-bristled brushes.

But now the Master makes no suggestion they should pack up and leave. He has grown used to them. Fair enough. Iris turns to go. Is Caspar here merely for a visit? If so, will it be a long one? Iris believes she’s pleased at the notion of his arrival, but in this, as in so much else, she’s not sure. “The Girl-Stag of the Meadow,” says Caspar as she passes him into the kitchen. “Which part are you? ” But from him the remark is not an insult; it makes her chortle, and she doesn’t answer. qxd 2/12/2003 8:39 AM Page 45 Girl with Wildflowers ith the arrival of Schoonmaker’s apprentice, Iris becomes, if not happier, at least less self-conscious, because Caspar doesn’t seem to notice her sorry looks.

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