Once Upon a River

Once Upon a River

4.1 (3,679 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

A SPELLBINDING, MULTI-LAYERED MYSTERY SET IN THE 19TH CENTURY AROUND THE THAMES, BY THE BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE THIRTEENTH TALE.

"I was completely spellbound by this book. Utterly brilliant!" (Ruth Hogan, bestselling author of The Keeper of Lost Things)

On a dark midwinter's night in an ancient inn on the Thames, the regulars are entertaining themselves by telling stories when the door bursts open and in steps an injured stranger. In his arms is the drowned corpse of a child.

Hours later, the dead girl stirs, takes and breath and returns to life.

Is it a miracle?

Is it magic?

And who does the little girl belong to?

An exquisitely crafted multi-layered mystery brimming with folklore, suspense and romance, as well as with the urgent scientific curiosity of the Darwinian age, Once Upon a River is as richly atmospheric as Setterfield's bestseller The Thirteenth Tale.

"Diane's masterful storytelling draws you in to a beguiling tale, full of twists and turns like the river at its heart, and just as rich and intriguing." (M L Stedman, bestselling author of The Light Between Oceans)

"Swift and entrancing, profound and beautiful. Give yourself a treat and read it!" (Madeline Miller, Orange Prize-winning author of The Song of Achilles and Circe)
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Product details

  • Hardback | 432 pages
  • 162 x 240 x 39mm | 667g
  • DOUBLEDAY
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0857525654
  • 9780857525659
  • 924

Review Text

"Diane's masterful storytelling draws you in to a beguiling tale, full of twists and turns like the river at its heart, and just as rich and intriguing. It lures you into its depths and carries you along in its vividly evoked world."
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Review quote

"A story, no matter how cleverly it is structured, lives or dies on the vividness of its characters. Setterfield, a true storyteller, makes us care about all her players in this beguiling novel." * The Times * "I was completely spellbound by this book. Numerous strands of the same story are skilfully woven into a magical web from which I, as a reader, had no desire to escape. Setterfield's prose is beautiful, dark and eerily atmospheric, and her rich cast of characters convincingly illustrate the best and worst of humanity. Utterly brilliant!" -- Ruth Hogan,bestselling author of The Keeper of Lost Things "Once Upon a River is one of the most pleasurable and satisfying new books I've read in a long time. Setterfield is a master storyteller, her language flowing with a dark magic very like the river at the heart of her tale: swift and entrancing, profound and beautiful. Give yourself a treat and read it!" -- Madeline Miller,Orange Prize-winning author of The Song of Achilles and Circe "Exploring themes of storytelling, parenthood, science and society on the cusp of change, this is a richly evocative novel." * Observer * "This is magical, bewitching story telling - and so cleverly structured...it possesses all those narrative values I have always cherished...: high prose expressed with rare clarity, story for the unashamed sake of story, a kind of moral dreaminess." -- Jim Crace,author of Man Booker shortlisted Harvest "Diane's masterful storytelling draws you in to a beguiling tale, full of twists and turns like the river at its heart, and just as rich and intriguing. It lures you into its depths and carries you along in its vividly evoked world." -- M L Stedman, author of The Light Between Oceans "Once Upon a River is a delight, just marvellous. I devoured it." -- Jo Baker, author of Longbourn "Diane Setterfield's debut novel, The Thirteenth Tale, came out in 2006 to wide acclaim. She made her mark by delivering her own take on the classic romantic mystery novel, infused with the spirit of Jane Eyre, Rebecca and The Woman in White. Once Upon a River continues to demonstrate her mastery of the Gothic genre in a way that will appeal to modern readers...Setterfield knows how to make the words sing. It is worth taking a journey down the Thames with her." * Independent * "A finely drawn cast and bravura storytellling." * Mail on Sunday * "An absolute feast of a book, which will keep you engrossed as the cold north wind whistles outside." * Red * "Once Upon A River succeeds in doing what you hope every book will do - pull you in from the first page, hold you captive in the middle, then leave you satisfied and thoughtful at the end. I loved it." -- Renee Knight, author of Disclaimer "Brimming with folklore, intrigue and romance, this is a story to savour." * Woman & Home * "An enchanting mix of mystery and folklore." * Good Housekeeping * "This pungently atmospheric, quietly smoldering thriller sensitively mixes superstition, oral storytelling and the emerging psychology movement of the 19th century." * Metro * "This enchanting historical story is full of folklore and intrigue." * Prima * "Though Setterfield writes emotions with marvellous truth and subtlety, her most stunning prose is reserved for evocative descriptions of the natural world, creating an immersive experience made of light, texture, scent and sensation." * Washington Post * "Like Setterfield's earlier novel The Thirteenth Tale, Once Upon a River is very much a story about the spellbinding power of storytelling...a deeply satisfying read." * New York Journal of Books * "I was completely spellbound by this book. Numerous strands of the same story are skilfully woven into a magical web from which I, as a reader, had no desire to escape. Setterfield's prose is beautiful, dark and eerily atmospheric, and her rich cast of characters convincingly illustrate the best and worst of humanity. Utterly brilliant!" -- Ruth Hogan,bestselling author of The Keeper of Lost Things "Once Upon a River is a delight, just marvellous. I devoured it." -- Jo Baker, bestselling author of Longbourn "Diane's masterful storytelling draws you in to a beguiling tale, full of twists and turns like the river at its heart, and just as rich and intriguing. It lures you into its depths and carries you along in its vividly evoked world." -- M L Stedman, bestselling author of The Light Between Oceans "Once Upon a River is one of the most pleasurable and satisfying new books I've read in a long time. Setterfield is a master storyteller, her language flowing with a dark magic very like the river at the heart of her tale: swift and entrancing, profound and beautiful. Give yourself a treat and read it!" -- Madeline Miller,Orange Prize-winning author of The Song of Achilles and Circe "This is magical, bewitching story telling - and so cleverly structured...it possesses all those narrative values I have always cherished...: high prose expressed with rare clarity, story for the unashamed sake of story, a kind of moral dreaminess." -- Jim Crace, author of Man Booker shortlisted Harvest "Once Upon A River succeeds in doing what you hope every book will do - pull you in from the first page, hold you captive in the middle, then leave you satisfied and thoughtful at the end. I loved it." -- Renee Knight, author of bestseller Disclaimer
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About Diane Setterfield

Diane Setterfield's bestselling novel, The Thirteenth Tale was published in 38 countries, sold more than three million copies, and was made into a television drama scripted by Christopher Hampton, starring Olivia Colmanand Vanessa Redgrave. Her second novel was Bellman & Black, and her new novel is Once Upon a River. Born in rural Berkshire, she now lives near Oxford, by the Thames.
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Rating details

3,679 ratings
4.1 out of 5 stars
5 39% (1,439)
4 39% (1,438)
3 16% (601)
2 4% (155)
1 1% (46)
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