Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister by Gregory Maguire

From the book cover:

We have all heard the story of Cinderella, the beautiful child east out to slave among the ashes.  But what of her stepsisters, the homely pair exiled into ignominy by the fame of their lovely sibling?  What fate befell those untouched by beauty…and what curses accompanied Cinderella’s looks?

Set against the backdrop of seventeenth-century Holland, Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister tells the story of Iris, an unlikely heroine who finds herself swept from the lowly streets of Haarlem to a strange world of wealth, artifice, and ambition.  Iris’s path quickly becomes intertwined with that of Clara, the mysterious and unnaturally beautiful girl destined to become her sister.  While Clara retreats to the cinders of the family hearth, Iris seeks out the shadowy secrets of her new household – and the treacherous truth of her former life.

Far more than a mere fairy tale, Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister is a novel of beauty and betrayal, illusion and understanding, reminding us that deception can be unearthed – and love unveiled – in the most unexpected of places.

My opinion:

Honestly, it was blah.

It is very difficult to pick up a book that is pretty much based on a fairy tale you have heard most of your life, watched the movie, and then watched other movies that hit very close to home (Ever After).

I really wanted to like this book.  After reading Wicked and seeing the musical, I just knew Mr. Maguire had found a sweet way to bring our childhood fairy tales back around to make them fit in our adult lives as well.

It was difficult to really invest in any of the characters.  Don’t get me wrong, occasionally there would be some hint of interest into one storyline or another, which is the only way I was able to finish the book.  Well, that, and I just knew it would get better.

2/5 Hearts

 

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