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Once on a Time

Once on a Time by A. A. Milne
By: (1882-1956)

This version of the book is done as a Dramatic Reading with various people speaking each characters part.

When the King of Barodia receives a pair of seven-league boots as a birthday present, his habit of flying over the King of Euralia's castle during breakfast provokes a series of incidents which escalate into war. While the King of Euralia is away, his daughter Hyacinth tries to rule in his stead and counter the machiavellian ambitions of the king's favourite, the Countess Belvane. Ostensibly a typical fairytale, it tells the story of the war between the kingdoms of Euralia and Barodia and the political shenanigans which take place in Euralia in the king's absence. The book introduces us to a princess who is far from helpless; a prince who, whilst handsome, is also pompous and vain; an enchantment which is almost entirely humorous; a villain who is not entirely villainous and receives no real comeuppance; a good king who isn't always good; an evil king who isn't always evil, and so on. The result is a book which children may not enjoy as much as adults. The book was written by Milne partly for his wife, upon whom the character of the Countess Belvane was partially based.

First Page:



A.A. Milne





Publishers New York

By Arrangement with G. P. Putnam's Sons

Copyright, 1922


A. A. Milne


This book was written in 1915, for the amusement of my wife and myself at a time when life was not very amusing; it was published at the end of 1917; was reviewed, if at all, as one of a parcel, by some brisk uncle from the Tiny Tots Department; and died quietly, without seriously detracting from the interest which was being taken in the World War, then in progress.

It may be that the circumstances in which the book was written have made me unduly fond of it. When, as sometimes happens, I am introduced to a stranger who starts the conversation on the right lines by praising, however insincerely, my books, I always say, "But you have not read the best one." Nine times out of ten it is so. The tenth takes a place in the family calendar; St. Michael or St. Agatha, as the case may be, a red letter or black letter saint, according to whether the book was bought or borrowed... Continue reading book >>

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Reviews (Rated: 5 Stars - 4 reviews)

Reviewer: - November 5, 2014
Subject: Once on a time
What a fabulous tale I admit to being prejudice assuming Winnie the Pooh in disguise but with the professional dramatic telling I discovered how erroneous my preconceptions had been Possibly the best audio book on the site
Reviewer: - June 30, 2013
Subject: Light and entertaining
The story is fun and easygoing. Something of a children's book. Only drawback is the voice of the Countess, I find it really annoying. Maybe the point is that it adds more annoyance to her character.
Reviewer: - February 18, 2013
Subject: Great Story
Agree with Lily, great tale, very clever and well read.
Reviewer: - November 2, 2012
Subject: Wonderful!
First, this is by far the best Librivox recording I've heard, and I've listened to quite a few. There are several readers that act as a cast for the story, so that each character has its own voice. There is also a fabulous narrator who carries the whole story along. As to the tale itself- this was a fun, light-hearted romp. It's not "serious" fantasy, but a tongue-in-cheek fairy tale, full of wit and humor.

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