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Mirror Mirror: A Novel by Gregory Maguire
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Mirror Mirror: A Novel (edition 2004)

by Gregory Maguire

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4,863631,694 (3.25)107
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 Vincente. 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 long. When Borgia sends Don Vicente on a years-long quest to reclaim a relic of the original Tree of Knowledge, 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 there can be found salvation as well . . . The eye is always caught by light, but shadows have more to say.… (more)
Member:NoImagination
Title:Mirror Mirror: A Novel
Authors:Gregory Maguire
Info:Harper Paperbacks (2004), Paperback, 320 pages
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Mirror Mirror: A Novel by Gregory Maguire

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    BookshelfMonstrosity: Set during the Italian Renaissance, these novels infuse popular stories with rich historical detail. Juliet's Nurse retells Romeo and Juliet from the nurse's perspective, while Mirror, Mirror superimposes the dynastic politics of the Borgias upon the tale of Snow White.… (more)
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» See also 107 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 63 (next | show all)
lgpb
  5083mitzi | Mar 14, 2021 |
I was thrown off balance for most of the book because I was expecting it to be something else, a retold fairy tale. Instead I kept thinking this was a fictionalized biography of Lucretia Borgia. In this version, one can almost sympathize with her. In our times we'd say she was molested, tho we are never made to feel pity for her: she is strong and determined and seemingly has bought into what fate has brought her.
Bianca is barely a person, more a pawn or an object. Her life is stolen from her over and over.
I really liked Maguire's imagined dwarves: slow thinkers, undifferentiated at first but changing. ( )
  juniperSun | Sep 14, 2020 |
Much better than Lion. Liked the fact it referenced real historical figures. ( )
  karenhulseman | Dec 3, 2019 |
Much better than Lion. Liked the fact it referenced real historical figures. ( )
  karenhulseman | Dec 3, 2019 |
I love this author's work produced as audio books - maguire's turn of phrase & the unique way he invokes narrative voice reward the actors - lots of fun, beautiful and humorous all at once - a treat ! I finished it up on kindle and love reading it too - the illustrations and verse at the start of the chapters are like little treats . ( )
  nkmunn | Nov 17, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 63 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gregory Maguireprimary authorall editionscalculated
Ferrone, RichardNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Forbes, KateNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McDonough, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rosenblat, BarbaraNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
I am a girl who did no wrong / I am a woman who slept with my father the Pope / I am a rock whose hands have appetites / I am a hunter who cannot kill / I am a mercenary with the French disease / I am a girl who lived among stones / I am a woman who poisoned my enemies / I am a rock and my brothers are rocks / I am a cleric who trafficked in curses / I am a gooseboy or am I a boy / I am a farmer who stole something sacred / I am a monster who let the child go / I am a dog with an unlikely past / I am a hunter who followed the coffin / I am a girl who did something wrong / I am the other side of snow / I am a mirror a mirror am I / Mirror mirror on the wall / Who is the fairest one of all

Do people say that I am both your father and your lover? Let the world, that heap of vermin as ridiculous as they are feeble-minded, believe the most absurd tales about the mighty! You must know that for those destined to dominate others, the ordinary rules of life are turned upside down and duty aquires an entirely new meaning. Good and evil are carried off to a higher, different plane.... Remember this. Walk straight ahead. Do only what you like, as long as it is of some use to you. Leave hesitation and scruples to small minds, to plebeians and subordinates. One consideration alone is worthy of you--the elevation of the House of Borgia, the elevation of yourself. -Alexander VI's speech to Lucrezia Borgia, from Arthur de Gobineau's Scenes historiques de la Renaissance (1877), as quoted in The Borgias by Ican Cloulas (1989)

One day some Lombard masons working near the cloister of Sta. Maria Nuova just off the Via Appia had opened a sarcophagus and found the body of a young Roman woman of about fifteen so well preserved that it seemed alive. A crowd had gathered around and admired the girl's rosy skin, her half-open lips revealing very white teeth, her ears, her black lashes, dark, wide-open eyes, and beautiful hair, done in a knot.... -The Borgia, ibid.
Dedication
First words
From the arable river lands to the south, the approach to Montefiore appears a sequence of relaxed hills.
Quotations
Before catechisms can instill a proper humility, small children know the truth that their own existence has caused the world to bloom into being.
It was bizarre and even cruel, in a way, to see the world insist on being itself with so little regard for them.
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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 Vincente. 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 long. When Borgia sends Don Vicente on a years-long quest to reclaim a relic of the original Tree of Knowledge, 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 there can be found salvation as well . . . The eye is always caught by light, but shadows have more to say.

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AR 7.2, 12 Pts
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