When the story was first translated from Danish and published in England in the mid-nineteenth century, the Little Match Girl's dying visions of lights and a grandmother in heaven were often interpreted as metaphors of religious salvation. In "Matchless", Maguire adds a different dimension to the story, intertwining the match girl's tale with that of a young boy, Frederik, whose own yearnings are the catalyst for a better future for himself and his family. Maguire uses his storytelling magic to rekindle Andersen's original intentions, and to suggest transcendence, the permanence of spirit, and the continuity that links the living and the dead.
Gregory Maguire is the bestselling author of CONFESSIONS OF AN UGLY STEPSISTER, LOST, MIRROR MIRROR, and the Wicked Years, a series that includes WICKED, SON OF A WITCH, and A LION AMONG MEN. WICKED, now a beloved classic, is the basis for the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical of the same name. Maguire has lectured on art, literature, and culture both at home and abroad.