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Sunlight and Shadow: A Retelling of

Sunlight and Shadow: A Retelling of "The Magic Flute" (Once upon a Time Series)

3.8 44
by Cameron Dokey, Mahlon F. Craft (Designed by)

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A new spin on "The Magic Flute" by an acclaimed author!
In a time when the world was young and many things were quite commonplace that are now entirely forgotten, Sarastro, Mage of the Day, wed Pamina, the Queen of the Night. And in this way was the world complete, for light was joined to dark. For all time would they be joined together. Only the ending of


A new spin on "The Magic Flute" by an acclaimed author!
In a time when the world was young and many things were quite commonplace that are now entirely forgotten, Sarastro, Mage of the Day, wed Pamina, the Queen of the Night. And in this way was the world complete, for light was joined to dark. For all time would they be joined together. Only the ending of the world could tear them apart. In other words, in the days in which my parents married, there was no such thing as divorce....
Thus begins the tale of Mina, a girl-child born on the longest night of the darkest month of the year. When her father looked at her, all he saw was what he feared: By birth, by name, by nature, she belonged to the Dark. So when Mina turned sixteen, her father took her away from shadow and brought her into sunlight.
In retaliation, her mother lured a handsome prince into a deadly agreement: If he frees Mina, he can claim her as his bride.
Now Mina and her prince must endure deadly trials — of love and fate and family — before they can truly live happily ever after....

Editorial Reviews

There's a princess in distress, characters that represent light and dark, a brave prince, a death-defying quest, and a happy ending. But that's where the parallels to a traditional fairy tale end. The women characters are strong: they speak their minds, they listen to their hearts, they need no rescuing. Most of the male characters aren't afraid to be vulnerable, recognizing that strength resides alongside fear. The characters speak directly to the reader, a wonderful way to appeal to an audience. The message is vital—that the song of one's heart is waiting for us to hear it. That true tragedy is when we fail to listen to its message or follow its path to our true destiny. The prince and princess do walk off into the sunset in the end, but readers of all ages will delight in this story that abandons classic gender stereotypes and expectations. Reluctant readers might struggle with changes in the point of view, for many people tell this tale. Most of the time this occurs with the change of a chapter, but once the characters are established, only a page break alerts us to a new voice. This is an excellent text for a class—it will appeal to males and females alike and serve as an excellent springboard into a discussion about what lies within the heart. KLIATT Codes: JS*—Exceptional book, recommended for junior and senior high school students. 2004, Simon & Schuster, Pulse, 186p., Ages 12 to 18.
—Annette Wells
School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up-A reworking of the Mozart opera "The Magic Flute." On her 16th birthday, Mina, the daughter of Pamina, the Queen of the Night, and Sarastro, the Mage of the Day, is to be taken to live with the father she hardly knows until he can choose a suitable husband for her. When he arrives early to sweep her away, Pamina seeks revenge by enlisting Lapin, a local boy, to play his enchanted bells and call Mina's true love to her. Tern, a prince, hears the bells and, unable to resist their call, arrives with his magic flute, with which he is able to play the music of his heart. Mina and Tern fall in love, and an angry Sarastro sets a deadly trial for Tern to complete in order to have his daughter's hand. Mina, refusing to stand by and have her life decided for her, accompanies Tern so that they may face the challenge together. The telling alternates among four points of view: Mina, Tern, Lapin, and Gayna, an orphan girl whom Sarastro has raised and who mostly gives readers insight into his way of thinking. The setting is otherworldly but the voices are modern, making it easy for teens to relate to the narrators. The strong female characters and the blend of fantasy and romance make this a great light read.-Michele Capozzella, Chappaqua Public Library, NY Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

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 0.80(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

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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Sunlight and Shadow 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 44 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Definetly my least favorite of the series. I really wanted to like it,but it was very hard to get through. There were a lot of places where it was cheesy and a little over dramatic. Snow, Before Midnight, Golden, and Scarlet Moon are worth getting though. I definetly don't recommend this one.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have one word to describe this book, pointless! It is a shame to think that this book is a part of the wonderful Once Upon a Time series. When I read this book I just felt that it was empty and wondered if I should even finish reading it. When I am reading a fairy tale I want to be enchanted and have every character draw me into their lives, but this book just fell flat. I thought even at times that it was a bit corny and exaggerated. Don't get me wrong I do love a happy ending, but sometimes books can just be a bore when everything turns out somehow perfectly at the end. I do not recommend this book, it is just a waste of time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
At the beginning this book, I thought it was alright but a bit confusing. It's annoying how the book is narrated. Then it abruptly changes narrators and I'm irked, especially when it's redundant. Then it switches again and I sigh in frustration. All these characters seem to do is ramble about 'oh, I'll get to that part' instead of just straight out telling us. I know the author was trying to put in some suspense, but it was vexing. It wasn't suspenseful at all, just superfluous. Also, the author's style is awkward. The grammar is very choppy and inept it didn't really fit right. Often, the conversation shifts completely and I'm at a lost. All in all, I call this book 'shadowy' because it's very vague. I found it overall frustrating and annoying. I do not recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Wow! This book was amazing! It is difficult to keep up with sometimes, but it blew me away! My goodness, the characters are so likeable and sweet - some of them, anyway... I just didn't want to let them go. A must read!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I didnt like this book at all there were to many characters in it. And all they did was ramble on about nothing when they need to just get to the point. Thats all I am going to write.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was very... let's just say that unlike all the other Once upon a Time Series, I really could not get into it. I'm not saying it was bad, I just think it could have been a little more exciting.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really did love this book. It's probably one of my favorites out of the series, but I just thought there was one thing that could've been better: the length. I think that Cameron Dokey could've had more challenges or could've explained some things more in depth. It was just kind of like they went on a journey, they had challenges, the end. I just think it would've been better that way. But I still love this book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
i really enjoyed this book very much. actually i enjoy all of the Once Upon a Time Series books but this one is in the top three(Midnight Pearls #1, Sunlight and Shadow #2, and Scarlet Moon #3). if you like lots of romance with trials and rules then this book is for you.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really liked this book. I loved how the story wad told from 5 total points of view-mina, laden, tern, gayna, and statos. It was cool to see how these characters found their own heart and became independant. This book had a lot of music in it with the "magic" flute and the bells. The ending was good but it was very rushed and could have been better. The beginning told all kind of stories from the character's past which really bore me because i wasnt into the basic story yet. I had never heard of the magic flute story until i read this book and this book inspired me to find out what it is about. Overall this was a very good book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
greekgirl98 More than 1 year ago
It was very slow, with too many details, and very childish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Crystal_Kido More than 1 year ago
This was a very interesting book with many very intriguing characters. The story is full of the thoughts and emotions of many of the different characters and gives you the opportunity to see different points of view by alternating view points from time to time. This was a very enjoyable book to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've recently finished all of the books and so I've decided to review each of them in the following categories: story, characters, and my final comments. (Warning: Spoiler Alert on this whole review) (Story): Mozart's "The Magic Flute" takes a new spin in this retelling. Mina is unlike any princess in the world. Her father is the Mage of the Day, and her mother is the Queen of the Night. Mina's father, Sarastro, is hardly involved in Mina's life, and she resents it. However, an agreement has been worked out between her parents that Mina will go live with her father when she turns sixteen. But when Sarastro takes their daughter early, Mina's mother, Pamina, is furious. Mina is also not willing to live under her father's roof, so she decides to escape. On her way out though, she meets the Prince Tern, who is looking for his soul-mate. He sees it in Mina, and the two instantly fall in love. But Mina and Tern must pass perilous tests if they are to be wed. I had never heard of "The Magic Flute" before reading this, so I did research before reading the book. Even so, I thought it was a unique addition to the series and told in a way that was refreshing and spellbinding. (Characters): The interesting thing I learned about this book is that there are basically no gender stereotypes. Mina is not afraid to stand up to her father and believes in both herself and Tern when they are going through the series of tests. Tern is not afraid to get serious about a situation and I felt that he genuinely loved Mina in that, she's willing to take risks, but he also wants to be there beside her to help her through. Sarastro and Pamina were also interesting characters. Pamina is clearly very protective of her daughter and the explanation of Sarastro not being much involved in Mina's life was, I thought, expected but also surprising. (Final Comments): This was one of the most interesting stories I've read in a long time. I really like Dokey's style and think it's perfect for stories like these.
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