In ONCE UPON A RIVER, on a dark midwinter’s night in an ancient inn on the river Thames, an extraordinary event takes place. The lifeless body of a small child is found. Hours later, she stirs, takes a breath, and returns to life.
Those who dwell on the river bank apply all their ingenuity to solving the puzzle of the girl who died and lived again, yet as the days pass the mystery only deepens. The child herself is mute and unable to answer the essential questions: Who is she? Where did she come from? And to whom does she belong?
But the return of a lost child is not without complications and no matter how heartbreaking the past losses, no matter how precious the child herself, this girl cannot be everyone’s. Each family has mysteries of its own, and many secrets must be revealed before the girl’s identity can be known.
ONCE UPON A RIVER is a great book to cozy up with on a gray, rainy day. The folkloric novel is atmospheric and rich in storytelling. While I found the beginning slow, I encourage you to dive in.