All Women's Talk

7 Great Gregory Maguire Novels ...

By Jennifer

I’ve been a loyal fan of Gregory Maguire since I first read “Wicked,” a novel that re-tells the familiar story in “The Wizard of Oz” from an unusual perspective: that of Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West. It’s an amazing piece of literature, one of my favorite books of all time. Once I finished “Wicked,” I was hungry for more of his books, and set out to read everything else he’s written. And I’m happy to report that I love all of Maguire’s books! If you’re looking for something new to read, or are already a fan of his and want to know what else he’s written, here’s my list of 7 great novels by Gregory Maguire.

1 Matchless

MatchlessPrice: $13.59 at amazon.com
This book arrives in bookstores just before the Christmas holiday, which is fitting, since it’s about the Hans Christian Andersen’s Little Match Girl. In 2008, Maguire was asked by NPR to re-tell a beloved Christmas story, and he chose this one, and I can’t wait to read it!

2 Wicked

WickedPrice: $10.88 at amazon.com
The first of the “Wicked” trilogy is one of my very favorite books of all time, telling the story of Elphaba and Glinda, the witches from “The Wizard of Oz.” Believe me, it’s not the story you know, and it’s actually very, very engaging. It’s got political intrigue, romance, and more… I highly recommend it!

3 Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister

Confessions of an Ugly StepsisterPrice: $10.80 at amazon.com
This novel is a take on the classic “Cinderella,” but from the step-sisters’ perspective. IT takes place in Holland during tulip-mania, and follows the story from beginning to end… one point the book makes I had never thought of before — what was wrong with the Prince that they were so ready to marry him off to a commoner?

4 Mirror, Mirror

Mirror, MirrorPrice: $18.24 at amazon.com
What Maguire did for “The Wizard of Oz” and “Cinderella” he does over again for “Snow White,” and this book is set to be released at the end of this month. Whatever I know about the story I’m prepared to throw out, and I’m ready to enjoy Maguire’s take on this classic non-Disney tale!

5 Lost

LostPrice: $11.46 at amazon.com
This is Maguire’s telling of a ghost story, scary and touching and thought-provoking. It’s a combination of a lot of familiar stories (Maguire’s forte), like Jack the Ripper and A Christmas Carol, but the way Maguire tells it is new, and you’ll love it this Halloween!

6 Leaping Beauty

Leaping BeautyPrice: $10.87 at amazon.com
This book isn’t strictly a novel, but rather a collection of classic fairy tales with animal-kingdom twists (Cinder-elephant, for example). They’re funnier this way, and since these are more like short stories, if you’re looking to get a feel for Maguire’s style without investing a lot of time, this is a great place to start.

7 What the Dickens

What the DickensPrice: $11.99 at amazon.com
A rogue tooth fairy? The idea alone was enough to hook me! The tale winds along as Gage, a young man, tells his cousins a story to help them get through difficulty after a storm has cut them off from the world. Like all of his books, it’s clever and unexpectedly sweet and poignant.

If you’re reluctant to buy all of these books without having read them, check them out from your local library one at a time and buy the ones you love as much as I do! “Wicked” is my favorite, but they’re all so fascinating and involving and clever! Have you read any of these books? Which is your favorite, and why? Please let me know!

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