Once on a Time

A. A. MILNE (1882 - 1956)

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. Written in 1917, Milne's own introduction begins 'This is an odd book', and indeed it is very difficult to classify. 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, all supposedly rewritten by Milne from the writings of the fictional historian "Roger Scurvilegs". Milne created the story to contain believable, three-dimensional characters, rather than the stereotypes which will satisfy children. Hence 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. (Summary from Wikipedia)

Genre(s): Action & Adventure Fiction, Myths, Legends & Fairy Tales, General Fiction

Language: English

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 01 01 - Preface Julie Bynum
00:03:46
Play 02 02 - Chapter 1 - The King of Euralia has a Visitor to Breakfast Rachel LaDue
00:13:33
Play 03 03 - Chapter 2 - The Chancellor of Barodia has a Long Walk Home Barry Eads
00:09:46
Play 04 04 - Chapter 3 - The King of Euralia Draws his Sword Barry Eads
00:13:58
Play 05 05 - Chapter 4 - The Princess Hyacinth Leaves it to the Countess Julie Bynum
00:13:56
Play 06 06 - Chapter 5 - Belvane Indulges her Hobby Julie Bynum
00:15:08
Play 07 07 - Chapter 6 - There are no Wizards in Barodia Julie Bynum
00:12:57
Play 08 08 - Chapter 7 - The Princess Receives a Letter and Writes One Patti Cunningham
00:15:53
Play 09 09 - Chapter 8 - Prince Udo Sleeps Badly Patti Cunningham
00:12:30
Play 10 10 - Chapter 9 - They are Afraid of Udo Catharine Eastman
00:12:12
Play 11 11 - Chapter 10 - Charlotte Patacake Astonishes the Critics Evelyn Clarke
00:20:26
Play 12 12 - Chapter 11 - Watercress Seems to go with the Ears Perez
00:15:15
Play 13 13 - Chapter 12 - We Decide to Write to Udo's Father Evelyn Clarke
00:19:42
Play 14 14 - Chapter 13 - "Pink" Rhymes with "Think" Evelyn Clarke
00:19:13
Play 15 15 - Chapter 14 - "Why Can't you be like Wiggs?" Patti Cunningham
00:15:19
Play 16 16 - Chapter 15 - There is a Lover Waiting for Hyacinth Barry Eads
00:04:24
Play 17 17 - Chapter 16 - Belvane Enjoys Herself Sarah LuAnn
00:18:08
Play 18 18 - Chapter 17 - The King of Barodia Drops the Whisker Habit Sarah LuAnn
00:22:00
Play 19 19 - Chapter 18 - The Veteran of the Forest Entertains Two Very Young People Catharine Eastman
00:19:01
Play 20 20 - Chapter 19 - Udo Behaves Like a Gentleman Sarah LuAnn
00:14:20
Play 21 21 - Chapter 20 - Coronel Knows a Good Story when he Hears it Sarah LuAnn
00:15:51
Play 22 22 - Chapter 21 - A Serpent Coming after Udo Neeru Iyer
00:18:56
Play 23 23 - Chapter 22 - The Seventeen Volumes go back Again Neeru Iyer
00:13:54