Sunday, April 24, 2016

Dead upon a time by Elizabeth Paulson

Kate Hood lives in a village full of people but she is very much alone, the only person who really knows her and cares about her is her grandmother - who lives alone in the woods.  One day as she is taking her grandmother her groceries Kate is attacked by a pack of wolves and barely escapes to the cottage where her grandmother lives, only to find her grandmother has been stolen away.  At the cottage Kate finds a series of tapestries that depict young people held in a prison that seems to be straight out of a nightmare - there is the young woman who must avoid a poisoned apple, a brother and sister in a room that is growing hotter by the moment, a young woman with hair shaved close to her scalp, and now her grandmother is missing too and the latest tapestry says it should have been Kate.

When Princess Ella is taken Kate goes on a quest to find her - along with two unlikely companions.  As they travel Kate will learn what it really means to be Uncommon and she is going to need to keep her wits about her because her enemy is not afraid to use magic to get what she wants - and what she wants is Kate.  Can Kate and her travelling companions find the missing children and teenagers before the unthinkable happens?

Dead upon a time is a delightful fractured fairy tale that takes the stories we know and makes them part of a dark and twisted mystery where the villain is not particularly clear - and where the ending is very satisfying.  At just over 200 pages this is not an in depth novel but it was the perfect length to get to know Kate and her world, and to unravel the mystery.  A lot of fractured fairy tales are aimed at the older teen market, but Paulson has written an engaging and endearing fractured fairy tale for younger teens and readers who don't want to tackle a fractured fairy tale that is hundreds of pages long.  There is potential here for more stories set in this universe and it will be interesting to see if Paulson brings us more stories about Kate and her fairy tale friends.

If you like this book then try:
  • Ella enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
  • Enchanted by Alethea Kontis
  • Just Ella by Margaret Peterson Haddix
  • Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell
  • The treachery of beautiful things by Ruth Frances Long
  • Cinder by Marissa Meyer
  • Throne of glass by Sarah J. Maas
  • Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
  • Crown duel by Sherwood Smith
  • Dealing with dragons by Patricia C. Wrede
  • Princess of the midnight ball by Jessica Day George
  • Water song by Suzanne Weyn
  • Beauty by Robin Mckinley
  • The storyteller's daughter by Cameron Dokey

Reviewed by Brilla

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