Start reading Once Upon A Dreadful Time on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here or start reading now with a free Kindle Reading App.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device


Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.
Once Upon A Dreadful Time

Once Upon A Dreadful Time [Kindle Edition]

Dennis L. McKiernan

Kindle Price: £3.92 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
* Unlike print books, digital books are subject to VAT.


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition £3.92  
Hardcover --  
Mass Market Paperback --  
Kindle Summer Sale: Over 500 Books from £0.99
Have you seen the Kindle Summer Sale yet? Browse selected books from popular authors and debut novelists, including new releases and bestsellers. Learn more

Special Offers and Product Promotions

  • Purchase any Kindle Book sold by and receive £1 credit to try out our Digital Music Store. Here's how (terms and conditions apply)

Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed

Product Description

Product Description

More information to be announced soon on this forthcoming title from Penguin USA

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 614 KB
  • Print Length: 428 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 045146172X
  • Publisher: Roc; Reprint edition (2 Oct 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001G6YM2Y
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #794,872 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Customer Reviews

There are no customer reviews yet on
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.1 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Return of the Evil Wizard 17 Jun 2008
By Arthur W. Jordin - Published on
Once Upon a Dreadful Time (2007) is the fifth fantasy novel in the Faery series, following Once Upon a Spring Morn. In the previous volume, Celeste killed the Gorgon, restored Avelaine's shadow, and then shot Nefasi dead with the gray arrow. The Changeling Lord invoked a protective circle and taunted Roel just before the knight slashed through the magical shield with Coeur d'Acier and took off his head.

The Gorgon's death freed Laurent and Blaise from her enchantment and these two knights joined with their brother to fight the Changelings. The three knights and two women fled the castle, but were eventually forced to stand and fight. The Changelings were about to overwhelm them when the warbands of the Forests of the Seasons and the crewmen of the Sea Eagle charged to their rescue.

In this novel, Hradian has been living in a vile swamp while seeking a way to wreck vengeance upon the killers of her sisters. For the past four years, the witch has been observing King Valeray, Queen Saissa and their children, wondering how she can destroy these murderers without losing her own life. Then suddenly she conceives a dreadful plan.

King Valeray and Queen Saissa are holding a tournament in their domain and have invited their children and spouses as well as other guests to the Palace of the Seasons. This domain can only be reached through the surrounding domains. Yet it is starwise -- north -- of Winterwood, Summerwood, Autumnwood and Springwood, although at the center of these four Forests of the Seasons.

Their guests include Prince Borel and his wife Michelle, Prince Alain and his wife Camille and their son Duran, Princess Liaze and her husband Luc, and Princess Celeste and her husband Roel. They also invite Roel's parents -- Sieur Emile and Lady Simone -- and his siblings Laurent, Blaise and Avelaine. Vicomte Chevell --Avelaine's husband -- is unable to attend due to other commitments.

Even before they arrive, Queen Saissa and the princesses have been feeling sensations of malevolent presences around themselves and their spouses. Only the females -- and the male wolf Slate -- have these feelings. Moreover, Michelle and Camille only sense this evil presence while in the company of their husbands.

The men and the women separately discuss these feelings of malevolent presence. In the process, Roel's family members are brought up to date on the encounters of King Valeray and his children with the evil wizard Orbane and his acolytes. All decide that the sensations are probably caused by the workings of the witch Hradian, the last living acolyte of the imprisoned wizard.

In this story, the tournament and other festivities are enjoyed by a great crowd from the local domains, from elsewhere in Faery, and even from the mortal lands beyond. The games include the caber toss, the hammer throw, the discus hurl and many others. Finally come the epee duels, the melee and the joust.

In the echecs matches, Borel is pitted against Regar of the Wyldwood. While playing the stranger, Borel learns that Regar is the illegitimate grandson of the Fairy King. After Borel loses, he offers Regar a drink and then introduces him to the royal family.

Hradian prepares an odious potion and uses it to steal the key to the Castle of Shadows. She flies her broom to the Black Wall of the world and into the darkness. Crossing to the Castle, she frees Orbane and takes him away.

Orbane starts raising his armies among the Trolls, Changelings, Bogles, Goblins and other foul creatures. He raises a dark cloud to cover the land and a great pestilence from the swamp. Then he marches toward the River of Time.

King Valeray musters all his levies and allies and asks Sieur Emile to command the army. The warbands gather at the castle in the domain of the seasons and then march toward their enemy. On the way, their allies join them here and there.

Regar travels with Flic, Fleurette and Buzzer to the Halls Under the Hill to warn his grandfather. He is introduced to the whole court, but Queen Gloriana is cold to his presence. The Fairy King summons his army and they set out the next day, but two months have passed in the outside world.

This tale is the conclusion of the Faery series. The machinations of the acolytes of Orbane have been thwarted in the previous four volumes, but now the wizard has been freed from the Castle of Shadows. The whole of Faery and the mortal world is threatened with disruption of time itself. Enjoy!

Highly recommended for McKiernan fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of black and white magic, heroic courage, and joyous romance.

-Arthur W. Jordin
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Once upon a dreadful book 10 Sep 2008
By J. Ackerman - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I thought a wrap-up of the four "once upon" books would be a satisfying read. Instead this book has excessive back story and absolutely horrific descriptions of the witch Hradian's spell-casting, etc. From her disgusting sex antics with swamp-dwelling bogles to her attempts to determine just how to mess with the royal family by gory entrail cutting, I began to completely skip the chapters written from her point of view. A big disappointment.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful fairytale 8 Oct 2007
By Harriet Klausner - Published on
From time to time, the spouses of the rulers in the Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn Woods feel as if someone is watching them but they never see anyone. They do not realize that the witch Hradian, acolyte of the faery Wizard Orbane is watching them. She tries to figure out a way to release her master who is imprisoned in the Castle Of Shadows in the Great Darkness beyond the Black Wall of the World. She also wants him to kill the princes and princesses of the various woods domains and their parents Valeray and Saissa because they killed her three sisters..

The father is responsible for Orbane's imprisonment and the children are responsible for the deaths of the witch's three sisters. She sees who has the key to unlock the prison; so Hradian transforms herself into his wife and tricks him into giving it to her. She releases the monster Orbane who imprisons in the Castle of Shadows Valeray, his wife, their children and grandchild and then goes about gathering allies to use on his master plan to rule faery and the human world. The spouses of the imprisoned princes and princess gather an army to fight Orbane but they have to successfully solve the riddle the three fates give each princess if they hope to vanquish the darkness.

ONCE UPON A DREADFUL TIME is a magical and beautiful fairytale that takes place in the world of faery where the laws of science don't work. Fans read about all kind of creatures from mythology and legend like sprites, unicorns, wizards, witches and giants. The characters from the four previous books in the saga make major appearances and play significant roles however it is the three fates and their riddles that are the most important part of the plot because without them the heroes wouldn't have a chance of survival let alone winning; with that they still remain the underdogs.

Harriet Klausner
5.0 out of 5 stars Once Upon A Dreadful TIme 12 April 2014
By Reader - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Nice light read -- for me, this is what they call "A beach book," I use it to escape the hum-drum of daily life into a fantasy that carries you along. Really a gentle fairy tale.
3.0 out of 5 stars okay 23 Jun 2013
By SanteeFats - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Not nearly as good as his other novels. Kind of boring and under developed. Definitely not his best writing which is too bad.
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for similar items by category