Once Upon a River

Once Upon a River

The Sunday Times bestseller

Summary

'I was completely spellbound' - Ruth Hogan, author of The Keeper of Lost Things
'Setterfield is a master storyteller' - Madeline Miller, author of Circe

Some say the river drowned her... Some say it brought her back to life

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 a breath and returns to life.

Is it a miracle?

Is it magic?

And who does the little girl belong to?

An exquisitely crafted historical mystery brimming with folklore, suspense and romance, as well as with the urgent scientific curiosity of the Victorian age.

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Praise for Diane Setterfield:

'An absolute feast of a book, which will keep you engrossed' RED magazine
'Brimming with folklore, intrigue and romance, this is a story to savour' Woman & Home
'Once Upon a River continues to demonstrate [Setterfield's] mastery of the Gothic genre in a way that will appeal to modern readers' The Independent

Readers are captivated by Once Upon a River:

***** 'Pure escapism, a beautifully written story.'
***** 'It felt as comforting as the fantastical stories you read as a child yet with a darker edge.'
***** 'I was entranced from the beginning to the end.'

Reviews

  • 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

About the author

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 other novels are Bellman & Black and Once Upon a River, winner of the 2019 HWA Gold Crown Award. Born in rural Berkshire, she now lives near Oxford, by the Thames.
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