Audio Review: Once Upon a Dream by Liz Braswell

Posted January 25, 2018 by Lillian in Reviews / 1 Comment

Audio Review: Once Upon a Dream by Liz BraswellOnce Upon a Dream by Liz Braswell
Series: A Twisted Tale #2
Published by Disney Press on 2016-04-05
Length: 440 pages
Reviewing Audiobook, eARC from My Book Shelf, Netgalley

What if the sleeping beauty never woke up? Once Upon a Dream marks the second book in a new YA line that reimagines classic Disney stories in surprising new ways.

It should be simple—a dragon defeated, a slumbering maiden, a prince poised to wake her. But when said prince falls asleep as soon as his lips meet the princess', it is clear that this fairy tale is far from over.

With a desperate fairy's last curse infiltrating her mind, Princess Aurora will have to navigate a dangerous and magical landscape deep in the depths of her dreams. Soon she stumbles upon Phillip, a charming prince eager to join her quest. But with Maleficent's agents following her every move, Aurora struggles to discover who her true allies are, and moreover, who she truly is. Time is running out. Will the sleeping beauty be able to wake herself up?

Once Upon a Dream by Liz Braswell is the second book in Disney’s A Twisted Tale series. Each book in the series takes a beloved fairy tale and asks one “what if” question. This one is about Sleeping Beauty and asks the question “what if sleeping beauty didn’t wake up?” Personally I love these. They are cleverly written and take a realistic approach to the fantasy….well as realistic as you can get when fairies are involved.

Aurora is an interesting character. She doesn’t know she’s asleep. Instead she believes she is living under Maleficent’s rule and Maleficent is the good fairy. Her parents never wanted her and sent her to live with the fairies in the woods until Maleficent found her and brought her back to the castle. She trusts her, even loves her to an extent. But she is trapped within the castle walls and she longs to be free. Aurora also can’t reconcile her memories of things (specifically animals) that shouldn’t exist. As she begins to question everything she knows as truth, more memories confuse her and she flees finding her prince in the woods.

I enjoyed the twists and turns in this story. Nothing could be trusted as fact, and everything could be turned against you. Honestly this made for a very confusing read, but that also was the best part of it. I liked not knowing what was going to happen and I loved being kept on my toes for the entire read. Even though I’ve had an eARC of this book, I decided to purchase an audiobook and I’m glad I did. The narrator is fantastic and put the right emphasis on things that if I was reading I may not have caught.

Overall Once Upon a Dream was an enjoyable read. I liked the twist on the classic Sleeping Beauty story. But I think I loved Aurora. Despite her confusion, she was a force to be reckoned with and she came to terms with her life throughout the story. I would definitely recommend this for the younger teens and anyone who enjoys fairy tales.

About Liz Braswell

After the sort of introverted childhood you would expect from a writer, Liz earned a degree in Egyptology at Brown University and then promptly spent the next ten years producing video games. Finally she caved into fate and wrote Snow and Rx under the name Tracy Lynn, followed by The Nine Lives of Chloe King series under her real name, because by then the assassins hunting her were all dead. She also has short stories in Geektastic and Who Done It and a new series of reimagined fairy tales coming out, starting with A Whole New World—a retelling of Aladdin.
She lives in Brooklyn with a husband, two children, a cat, a part-time dog, three fish and five coffee trees she insists will start producing beans any day. You can email her at

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