“Once upon a River”by Diane Setterfield braids miracle and mystery. Set on a winter solstice night at the end of the 19th century, the story begins when a gravely injured man stumbles into the Swan Inn on the upper Thames. Patrons discover that the large puppet the man was carrying is in fact child, who appears to have drowned. Some hours later, the girl stirs and returns to life. Miracle? Magic? Or is there a naturalistic explanation? “Replete with folklore, suspense and romance, Once Upon a River is as richly atmospheric as Setterfield’s bestseller The Thirteenth Tale. (less)
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