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Once Upon a River: A Novel

Once Upon a River: A Novel

Написано Diane Setterfield

Озвучено Juliet Stevenson


Once Upon a River: A Novel

Написано Diane Setterfield

Озвучено Juliet Stevenson

оценки:
4.5/5 (381 оценки)
Длина:
16 hours
Издатель:
Издано:
Dec 4, 2018
ISBN:
9781508256786
Формат:
Аудиокнига

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Описание

From the instant number one New York Times best-selling author of the “eerie and fascinating” (USA Today) The Thirteenth Tale comes a richly imagined, powerful new novel about how we explain the world to ourselves, ourselves to others, and the meaning of our lives in a universe that remains impenetrably mysterious.

A body always tells a story — but this child’s was a blank page.

Rita reached for the lantern on its hook. She trained its light on the child’s face.

"Who are you?" she murmured, but the face said as little as the rest of her. It was impossible to tell whether, in life, these blunt and unfinished features had borne the imprint of prettiness, timid watchfulness, or sly mischief. If there had once been curiosity or placidity or impatience here, life had not had time to etch it into permanence.

Only a very short time ago — two hours or not much more — the body and soul of this little girl had still been securely attached. At this thought, and despite all her training, all her experience, Rita found herself suddenly in the grip of a storm of feeling. All the old rage at God — for not being kind, for not being fair, and finally for just not being — swept her up all over again and she felt tears of anger on her face. She took the child’s hand in hers — the perfect hand with its five perfect fingers and their perfect fingernails — and the words fell out of her that she had not known were there:

"It should not be so! It should not be so!"

And that is when it happened.

Издатель:
Издано:
Dec 4, 2018
ISBN:
9781508256786
Формат:
Аудиокнига

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Об авторе

Diane Setterfield is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Thirteenth Tale, and a former academic, specializing in twentieth-century French literature, particularly the works of Andre Gide. She lives in Oxford, England.


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4.4
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Отзывы читателей

  • (5/5)
    Such an amazing book! It was so well written and perfect for cozying up next to a fireplace
  • (5/5)
    Diane Setterfield is a masterful story teller. If you're looking for quick fix fiction, this book in not for you. It flows slowly and magically along drawing the reader into the lives of characters that are crafted with details that fill them with life. Full of mystery and compassion, this is book is worth reading.
  • (5/5)
    Diane Setterfield is a remarkable storyteller. A beautiful, intertwining tale.
  • (5/5)
    Diane Setterfield has done it again! A wonderful story different from, but filled with wonderful characters as she wrote "The Thirteenth Tale"! I WILL be reading this again. Juliet Stevenson is a wonderful narrator.
  • (5/5)
    One of my favorite books! Beautifully crafted and written with memorable characters and perfectly descriptive language. An exquisite novel.
  • (5/5)
    Perfect pair, the narrator and this story. JS does such a wonderful job telling us of the lives of these people. I find her deep smooth voice so relaxing and can listen for hours at a time! This is the second listen for me & I found things I missed the first time ‘round so it was still as wonderful.
  • (5/5)
    I loved this book. Diane Setterfield’s beautiful prose was entrancing, her approach to storytelling gripping, and her character development rich. For a story with so many characters and important plot threads, I was amazed by how well she made me care for each character and storyline. Juliet Stevenson was an amazing narrator, too. I was so drawn in by this story and can’t wait to read more of Setterfield’s books.
  • (5/5)
    So enjoyed and highly recommend.
    Rivers are magical. Narration was excellent.
  • (5/5)
    This is one of the best audiobooks i have ever listened to!! Even better than the author's first book. Will read again one day!
  • (5/5)
    This is an engaging and enchanting tale. It is so well read that each character, animal and scene come to life. Well worth anyone’s time to listen to this splendid audiobook.
  • (5/5)
    This is a book about a child. This is a book about storytellers and the stories they conjure.This is a book about wonder. This is a book about family and love. This is a book about a child and wonder and family and love. Could there be anything more interesting than a book of wonder?! This is such a moving, quietly spectacular book.
  • (5/5)
    Wow. From the very first sentence to the very last, this was a great book. Not only was the story intriguing and the characters developed, but the writing itself was magical. I found my eyes absorbing the words rather than reading them and that meant I found myself right in the middle of all the action each time I sat down to read.
  • (4/5)
    Terrific! Diane Setterfield can really tell a tale - like a river winding along - Loved Thirteenth Tale and this is just as good. Kept me interested until the last page!!
  • (5/5)
    In the late 1800s, a mystery man pulls a mystery child from the Thames, and the hunt is on to claim her. Daughter of parents who thought themselves bereaved? Child of a passing stranger? Or just a girl washed overboard from a boat?The intersecting lives of rich and poor living in, on or around the river, form a rich backdrop to this tale of a child whose lack of voice parallels her initial “lack of life.” But surely there are ways the dead can be restored without miracles. And perhaps the nurse will learn. And perhaps…Blending local legend (and drinking tales) with local lives (and their incumbent trials), local scenery and haunting mystery, together with dawning science in an age of dying miracles, the story draws readers deep into wounded lives and keep us reading with the promise of future resolution. It’s a dark tale, beautifully enigmatic and pleasingly lit by kindness, and a thoroughly enjoyable, darkly evocative read.Disclosure: My husband bought it for me on a trip to England.
  • (5/5)
    Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield really enchanted me and I don't think I have ever said that about a book before. I would classify it as a fairy tale, well told and beautifully narrated in its audible version. It takes place in a hamlet near the Thames in a family-owned pub where people gather to tell stories both factual and mystical. One night at winter solstice, strange things happen in the pub which captivate all the lives and imaginations of the the town folk.
  • (5/5)
    I absolutely love this book and narration is pure perfection.
  • (5/5)
    Refreshingly different!!! Loved the intertwining tale of mystery and discovery.
  • (4/5)
    Diane Setterfield's ONCE UPON A RIVER is four mysteries with the Thames River as the backdrop. The foremost mystery is that of a nearly drowned (not really "returned to life," as explained in Setterfield's "Note") four-year-old girl. No one knows who she is, and she doesn't speak. The other three mysteries are of girls who have gone missing, feared drowned in the Thames. Could the unknown, nearly drowned girl be one of the three missing girls?This book is told in the writing style of a fairy tale, which turned me off for the first 60 or so pages. I almost didn't continue reading until I read in Setterfield's "Note" that one of the characters is based on an actual photographer of the Thames at the time of this story. After I read a few more pages, I got used to this writing style and found I enjoyed the mysteries.But I admit ONCE UPON A RIVER does sound as corny as a fairy tale sometimes, and I even expected "and they all lived happily ever after" at the end. Sure enough, the last chapter is called "Happily Ever After."I won this book from Atria Books.
  • (1/5)
    Although the author might believe this piece of work to be clever & mysterious; I found it to be overly long, winding, & boring with unremarkable, unlikable, dull characters, many with non-redeeming qualities.A half-drowned man, with his face bashed in and a seemingly dead little girl are brought back to life in a sleepy pub known for its storytelling.... The local healer is brought in and the little girls miraculously comes back to life.Then the story revisits the past & the lives of several local people, with many a chapter ending with: "Something is going to happen"Authors who write in a intentional "clever" but vague manner annoy the hell out of me.... This book qualifies.
  • (5/5)
    How Dreamy is this Fantasy, Once Upon a River? Diane Setterfield is a brilliant writer. The intertwining of story, the life experiences that cross over into other realms. The confusion that one little baby can create. Is so well told that you just can't put this book down.

    If you love fantasy like Inkheart; Lord of the Rings; The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe I can see you falling in love with this book.
  • (5/5)
    If you feel the start to be rather unclear please push on. Author Diane Setterfield's stories are well worth the added effort.
  • (5/5)
    I fell in love with Diane Setterfield’s first book, I was disappointed by her second; but when I saw the title of this third novel I thought that everything would be alright and as soon as I started to read I was quite certain that it would.Imagine curling up in a big armchair by a blazing fire on a wild and stormy night and listening to an story-teller who will have you hanging on every world and completely wrapped up in the story from beginning to end.Reading this book was rather like that.Back in the latter years of the 19th century there were many inns along the banks of the Thames and each one was renowned for something different, from music to gambling, from brawling to storytelling …It was the Swan Inn at Radcot that was known for its storytelling. It had been run for generations by the Ockwell family and it was a place where grand stories, with a good sprinkling of folklore and magic, were told, talked over, and re-told.40130093The grandest of all of the stories that would ever be told at the Swan Inn began on the night of the winter solstice. A badly injured stranger came through the door, carrying what all of those present believed to a large, bedraggled puppet.They were wrong.The man was carrying a lifeless young girl.Rita Sunday, the local nurse and widwife, was called and she quickly established that the girl had no pulse and was not breathing and that there was nothing she could go for her. She was laid out in a cold outer room while Rita treated the man’s injuries. Later she went back to the girl, because she couldn’t understand how she had died, and she was astonished to small signs of life. The girl would live. Rita’s scientific interest is piqued, because she cannot comprehend how anyone who is so clearly dead can recover and live.Nobody knows who the child is or where she came from, and she is unable to speak or tell to tell anyone anything about herself or her history.She might be the child of a wealthy couple who had been kidnapped years earlier.She might be the granddaughter of a gentleman farmer who knew that his estranged son had abandoned his wife and child.She might be the sister of a poor young woman who had never given up hope that she would come back one day.These are just some of the different characters whose stories – past and present – are wrapped around the story of the unknown child. The stories are rich and vividly told, the characters live and breathe, and it is so easy to be drawn in and to care deeply about what happens.There are good and hard-working people who do their best to help their friends and neighbours; there are people whose hearts have broken but who know that they can do nothing but carry on; but there are also scoundrels and evil-doers who will take advantage of any situation for their own ends.All life is here.Rita and the man whose life she saved – a photographer named Henry Daunt – become close and they set out to solve the mystery at the heart of the story.It is a story rich with the best kind of magic – magic rooted in nature and humanityStories are told of Quietly, one of a long line of a family of mute ferrymen, who travels between the worlds of the living and the dead. He will rescue river travellers in distress and will either deliver them safely to one side of the bank if it is not their time to pass, or to another destination if it is ….The river is always there, flowing through the story and its lovely prose.The story moves slowly and it rewards slow reading. The writing is gorgeous, there are so much many stories within the story to read and appreciate, and it is lovely spending time with all of the people who are part of those stories.Every detail was right, every note rang true, and the world of this book felt utterly, utterly real.Everything comes together beautifully and without a hint of contrivance.It was a wrench to leave, and I can’t quite believe that I couldn’t go to the Swan Inn and listen to the descendants of the people I have been reading about telling tales of them, telling the tales of this book, telling tales of their own ….I was spellbound from the first page to the last.
  • (5/5)
    This is the first novel that I have read by Diane Setterfield and it was so magical a journey that at times I felt as though I was truly alongside the river Thames. It was not surprising to read "About the Author" that she is a "former academic specializing in twentieth-century French literature." The writing is lyrical and mesmerizing.

    For all who remember the art of storytelling as passed down through the generations this novel refreshes that joy. For all who have never heard a story told out loud without benefit of notes or book this is a joyous introduction.

    The novel incorporates love and loss, birth and death, a lens to view early photography and medical care, the magic of living near the river shores, and the long reach of abusive relationships. It simply should not be missed!
  • (5/5)
    Once Upon a River was not so much like reading a story set in 19th century rural England, but more like BEING in 19th century rural England! Setterfield’s prose is so colorful that the reader hears and sees and smells everything she describes. Storytelling, or rather ‘weaving tales’, is a central theme, and what fodder the locals have in a child who was rescued drowned from the Thames yet comes back to life! This four year old girl might be either a kidnap victim or the child of a working girl who fled her abusive husband. (Or….?) The reader quickly surmises that the child cannot possibly be the kidnap victim, even though that family claims her. Instead, we root for her to belong to the upstanding family whose black sheep son fathered her. But many developments among characters make us question every instinct. This is one of those stories where all the characters and subplots are tied together by the end of the book, so that a seemingly meaningless event in an early chapter winds up being pivotal later on.Thumbs up to a well done novel with elements of mystery, fantasy, and morality.
  • (5/5)
    This novel is an amazing combination of haunting, sweet, and wistful. It's full of longing and grief. Setterfield writes beautifully and draws the reader into the atmosphere of storytelling and mystery. What a delight to read!
  • (5/5)
    Interesting story. Characters Nicely pulled together. Wish for different ending.
  • (5/5)
    Diane Setterfield is an excellent writer. This
    magical realism around a child who "was brought" back to life and two couples and a woman who all believe the child is there's .
  • (5/5)
    Beautifully written. A sense of mystery and magic, but still feels like it could be real. The river plays a central role, but the characters are well developed. I listened to the audio book and the narrator was wonderful. Highly recommend.
  • (3/5)
    George Elliot meets Charles Dickens. Pretty good but I've already read enough from the period. And anyway Jane Austin and Wilkie Collins are better.
  • (4/5)
    Excellent story and fantastic writing. I would put this on a par with "A Prayer For Owen Meany".