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Beauty Sleep: A Retelling of

Beauty Sleep: A Retelling of "Sleeping Beauty" (Once upon a Time Series)

3.5 95
by Cameron Dokey, Mahlon F. Craft (Designed by)

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The Princess Aurore has had an unusual childhood. Cursed at birth, Aurore is fated to prick her finger at the age of sixteen and sleep for one hundred years -- until a prince awakens her with a kiss. So, to protect her, Aurore's loving parents forbid any task requiring a needle.

Unable to sew or embroider like most



The Princess Aurore has had an unusual childhood. Cursed at birth, Aurore is fated to prick her finger at the age of sixteen and sleep for one hundred years -- until a prince awakens her with a kiss. So, to protect her, Aurore's loving parents forbid any task requiring a needle.

Unable to sew or embroider like most little princesses, Aurore instead explores the castle grounds and beyond, where her warmth and generosity soon endear her to the townspeople. their devotion to the spirited princess grows as she does.

On her sixteenth birthday, Aurore learns that the impending curse will harm not only her, but the entire kingdom as well. Unwilling to cause suffering, she will embark on a quest to end the evil magic. The princess's bravery will be rewarded as she finds adventure, enchantment, a handsome prince, and ultimately her destiny

Editorial Reviews

You know the words don't you? Of course you do. Once upon a time. There. Thank goodness that's over with. With this introduction, Aurore sweeps into her story. It is the familiar story of Sleeping Beauty, but there are some not-so-familiar differences to keep readers on their toes. The baby princess receives the requisite curse on her christening day from an overlooked cousin of the Queen: In her sixteenth year, Aurore will prick her finger and die. Her godmother softens the curse, altering it so that Aurore will sleep one hundred years to be awakened by a kiss. Aurore, who has all the right royal instincts, grows up as a tomboy, working beside her subjects and winning their hearts. In her fateful sixteenth year, a blight spreads over the land, and Aurore decides she must save her kingdom from the effects of the curse by obeying a compulsion to run away to the magical and forbidden forest that borders her land. There she meets Ironheart, a young prince on a quest to find a sleeping princess and wake her up. Their fates intertwine, of course, and they journey on together to a surprising ending. This breezy and entertaining read features an engaging heroine. Clever plot twists will keep readers turning pages to see how this adaptation turns out. An abundance of parenthetical phrases slows the pace of the first chapters, but fortunately, fewer appear in the rest of the book. This novel is a fun read for teens and a must for fans of fairy tale adaptations. VOYA CODES: 3Q 4P M J (Readable without serious defects; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2002, Simon & Schuster, 208p,
— Lynn Rutan
Dokey has written an exciting new spin on the traditional fairy tale of Sleeping Beauty. Aurore is not a typical princess; she is kept protected from all things that might cause her harm from the curse she was given at her christening. Oswald, her cousin and heir to the throne, is always around to torment her and cause trouble. His nickname is Prince Charming, though he is anything but charming. When Aurore is ten, she desperately wants to go outside, and it is Oswald, who has grown into his nickname, who gets permission for her. Once outside Aurore learns as much as she can from whoever will teach her about plants and animals. Once Aurore turns 16, terrible calamities start happening to the kingdom: the sky rains blood for a week, the suns shines for the next week with no night, hail stones the size of boulders fall from the sky—you get the idea. Aurore decides to leave and go to the forbidden forest, hoping to find a way to save herself and the kingdom. While there, she meets a young man who is on a quest for a beautiful maiden who has been sleeping for 100 years. Aurore helps him with his quest, which turns out to be not so different from her own. Romance is in the offing, but not with whom you might think. Filled with fairy tale elements and romance, this story will appeal to all who love a good fairy tale. Students who have read Ella Enchanted (Levine), Zel (Napoli), Beauty (McKinley), and other "new" fairy tales should read this, too. KLIATT Codes: J—Recommended for junior high school students. 2002, Simon & Schuster, Pulse, 186p.,
— Stacey Conrad
School Library Journal
Gr 6-10-Dokey has taken the familiar "Sleeping Beauty" fairy tale and turned it into a fantastical romance guided by adventure and magic with humor and wordplay thrown in for good measure. Overjoyed to be parents, the king and queen forget to invite one of the aunts to the baby's christening. Angered by their thoughtlessness, she curses the child to a certain death-by-pricking at age 16. So begins the tale of Aurore, a beautiful, strong-willed, ill-fated princess. Wary of her destined future, her parents coddle her throughout childhood. When she turns 16 and does not die, the kingdom is beset by strange happenings, and Aurore leaves in order to save it. She sneaks off to La Foret, the forbidden forest, where she meets young Prince Ironheart, nicknamed Charming. Time becomes wobbly at this point, and readers are taken further into a tangle of fantasy and magic. Of course Aurore is the princess that Ironheart has come to rescue. When she finally does prick herself with a needle, the sleep is only moments long-or is it? The characters are realistically drawn, especially Aurore, who, as narrator, is chatty, witty, and easy to like. Though the sequence of events in the forest is somewhat confusing, and the surprise ending wraps up rather quickly, this is an enjoyable read for mature fans of fairy tales.-Angela J. Reynolds, Washington County Cooperative Library Services, Hillsboro, OR Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In this variation on the Sleeping Beauty story, the characters prove sympathetic and the setting romantic, but the lack of tension makes for a slow read. As in the well-known tale, Aurore’s christening results in a curse that she will die at 17, mitigated by another gift that says she will instead sleep for one hundred years. The plodding first half concerns how Aurore breaks away from her mother’s protectiveness and ventures out into the kingdom. Although her father had named his nephew Oswald as his heir before Aurore was born, the king changes his mind once he sees his daughter’s love for her people. Hints abound that Oswald might seek revenge but, in fact, he and 16-year-old Aurore fall for each other. Before the romance can develop, she must leave the castle, lest the curse on her harm the kingdom. The pace picks up a bit as she enters a magical, forbidden forest and meets Ironheart, a young prince on a quest—to kiss a princess who has been sleeping for a hundred years. More hints suggest Aurore and Ironheart will fall in love, but a plot twist supplies a different ending. Told in a first-person voice, the narrative struggles between a chatty, modern tone far too full of parenthetical phrases, and a stronger, more traditional voice that emerges in the second half. Readers will find more satisfaction in Gail Carson Levine’s light-hearted Princess Tales series or the more complex fairy tale retellings by Donna Napoli. (Fiction 12+)

Product Details

Simon Pulse
Publication date:
Once upon a Time Series
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.18(w) x 7.00(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt


With these seemingly innocent words, the fate of a newborn princess is sealed. For years the king and queen despaired of ever having a child. When Aurore arrives, though the entire kingdom celebrates, not all are overjoyed. They use her christening as an occasion for revenge, and her young life is overshadowed by a curse of death almost as soon as it has begun. Those who can, intervene, but evil has a way of holding fast. A sleep of a hundred years following the pricking of a finger is the best that can be done.

And so Aurore grows up. Forbidden princesslike tasks of embroidery and sewing, she explores the great outdoors, reveling in the flora and fauna that surround her castle home. Then one day she meets a handsome stranger in an enchanted wood and begins an adventure the likes of which she never dreamed of.

This is the story of the Sleeping Beauty, here quite awake and given new voice. Taunted by fate, Aurore soon learns that although she cannot sidestep her own destiny, love itself is actually the most powerful magic of all.

Meet the Author

Cameron Dokey is the author of nearly thirty young adult novels. Her other fairy tales include, The Storyteller’s Daughter, Sunlight and Shadow, and Golden. She has also written the #1 bestselling How Not to Spend Your Senior Year. She lives in Seattle, Washington, with her husband and four cats.

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Beauty Sleep: A Retelling of "Sleeping Beauty" (Once upon a Time Series) 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 94 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was fantastic! Yet another great literary work from cameron dokey, this book made me look forward to whatever else she writes in the Once Upon A Time series. I hope they never run out of ideas!!
Crystal_Kido More than 1 year ago
This is a very well written re-telling of "Sleeping Beauty" with some very interesting twists and surprises that keep the reader wondering as well as some excellent characters that are not always as they seem at first. This book will grab your attention and keep you reading till you reach the end.
Sensitivemuse More than 1 year ago
The book is your standard Sleeping Beauty tale. A princess is held under a curse where if pricked with a needle she'd be asleep for a hundred years until a kiss wakes her up from her slumber. The similarities end there. Aurore (the Princess) isn't your typical royalty. She's out on the fields working alongside the peasants on the farms and restoring houses. Basically she's your "hands on" Princess. I think it's more realistic than your classic fairy tale. The King and Queen are more present in this story. Oswald who is nicknamed "Prince Charming" is also more involved in this tale. It does make it slightly more interesting as you don't see many of these characters in the original fairy tale so it adds another dimension to it. I wasn't really too interested in any of these characters despite their new presence into the story. Aurore is somewhat of a spoiled brat, a moody one too. As we are all familiar with the story there really is no need for character development, and there isn't any. These characters are two dimensional and flat. Sad to say, despite this being my favorite fairy tale, I wasn't really into this book. I couldn't really get into the plot which was a little dull and not that exciting to begin with. There were a few parts in the book that caught my attention but then it instantly goes back to being flat in a second. The plot was rather dry and although there is an "evil witch", the final battle...well let's just say you'll be disappointed as I was. I'd say the only good thing I actually liked out of this is the increased presence of other secondary characters. Otherwise I wish I could have liked it more but I just couldn't get into the story. It didn't get my attention and the characters aren't really that great. The ending was very different and it provides a different twist but it wasn't enough to really get me to really like the book. Thankfully the book is less than 200 pages so it wasn't a painful read, although I'm sure it could have been better. I probably will pick up her next few novels just because I want to see the different twists she puts on the fairy tales. Although if they aren't better than this one, then perhaps I wouldn't go further. However I'm stubborn and I do believe in second chances, unless it's something I really can't stand. Overall, tolerable, and interesting few twists on the fairy tale. However it falls short on plot and characters. It could have been so much better.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I agree with Lisa. The point of these stories is to give insight and personality to the heroine that lacks depth in the original stories. This book does just that for 'sleeping beauty'. It was fairly common in that time for her to end up with prince charming, and i dont think the book should be ostracized just because of that. the story had some twists, yes, but its fairly easy to follow. I really enjoyed reading it. Might be one of my favorites for this genre.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The plot was very interesting, and I was so happy that she married her cousin. He was better than the other prince. It was a very good story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've read pretty much every book in the Once Upon a Times Series, and I have to say, this one is my favorite. In classic Dokey, Aurore's past was built up, so that I felt I KNEW her when the main plot line began. The twisting of the tale of Sleeping Beauty was elegantly and marvelously done and the romance was soooo perfect. I would recommend this to any fairy tale lover!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is one of the most disappointing out of the Once Upon a Time series. I tried to like it, but could not due to the ending of the story. I felt misled and unfulfilled at the end, making me wonder why I read the book in the first place. I did not understand what the point was and I was truly bored reading it. I do not recommend this book, but do recommend Water Song, Snow, Midnight Pearls and The Crimson Thread.
Guest More than 1 year ago
On the whole this book was not too terribly hideous but the best love interest Dokey could come up with was the cousin? And the preamble was entire poo. Why exactly couldn't Aurore end up with someone outside of the family? I mean, Oswald could have been a close family friend, not close family. Oh well, at least Dokey made $5.99 off of me.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Yes I totally agree with Charlotte who wrote the previous review. I think that it was a little weird that Aruroe married her cousin! I thought it wasn't all that bad of a book though. Like I thought it was pretty exciting but the ending kind of wasn't all that great!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thanks to the plot spoliers, i know know who she marries. I dont own the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I could not get over the writing style; so wonderful, so unique. Like someone was telling me the story to my face. I felt connected to Aurore, sort of like she was an old friend. A must read for fairy tale lovers or anyone who wants a quick, easy read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I would say this book shows that true love can be within anyone, young or old relative or not but it is important that you know your truly right for that person. You just feel the shrill beneeth your stomach when you talk. But remember no how long you wait for love it is worth it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a pretty good retelling of sleeping beauty. I was a little bored at the beginning and it got a little confusing when aurore didnt even sleep much but came out of the forest 100 years later and it was wierd when a kiss from aurore made old oswald turn young again. I liked that aurore only spent a second of the story sleeping because i came to like her different personality because i wouldnt like being around so many coutiers who dont care about either. This story has deeper meaning than it looks like it has and i like that. Overall this was a great classic story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was alright i guess, but was really boring and a little confusing. The strangest part though was the part that she married her cousin. Even though i get that they used to marry relatives back in the day, but still GROSSSS so i wouldn't buy it waste of money
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book was not a book i would reconmed
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was very disappointed that she married her COUSIN!!! That just isn't right to marry family!!! It had a few swear words as well. She has skills at writing but I was saddened by these things.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book. It is one of my favorites in the Once Upon a Time series. It had many suprising and fun twists which made me never want to put the book down. The ending was unexpected and sweet. I loved the every part of the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cameron Dokey put her own twist on this captivating story of sleeping beauty. With a suprising ending, it unravels a another interesting theory of the life of aurore mostly known by the name sleeping beauty!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was somewhat confused by the ending of the story but cameron dokey is now one of my favorite authors!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read many of the once upon a time books, and this one is not my favorite. It did have a lot of twists though. Parts of this book were good, but some parts were terrible. It was strange that she fell in love with her cousin, Prince Ironheart would have been a better choice, or if Oswald was a close family friend instead of relative. I think this book had a lot of potential and could have been better.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was good. I would have given it five stars but it took like three days to load and on the first day it didn't make a dent on the loading bar!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book!!! I think that it was on of the best books ever!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago