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In a faraway kingdom, a king has been betrayed. Deeply hurt and bitterly angry, he vows never to be deceived again. Unfortunately, the king's plan to protect himself will endanger all of the realm's young women, unless one of them will volunteer to marry the king - and surrender her life. To everyone's relief and horror, one young woman steps forward. The daughter of a leg In a faraway kingdom, a king has been betrayed. Deeply hurt and bitterly angry, he vows never to be deceived again. Unfortunately, the king's plan to protect himself will endanger all of the realm's young women, unless one of them will volunteer to marry the king - and surrender her life. To everyone's relief and horror, one young woman steps forward. The daughter of a legendary storyteller, Shahrazad believes it is her destiny to accept this risk and sacrifice herself. On the night of her wedding to the king, Shahrazad begins to weave a tale. Fascinated, the king lets her live night after night. Just when Shahrazad dares to believe that she has found a way to keep her life — and an unexpected love - a treacherous plot will disrupt her plan. Now she can only hope that love is strong enough to save her.


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In a faraway kingdom, a king has been betrayed. Deeply hurt and bitterly angry, he vows never to be deceived again. Unfortunately, the king's plan to protect himself will endanger all of the realm's young women, unless one of them will volunteer to marry the king - and surrender her life. To everyone's relief and horror, one young woman steps forward. The daughter of a leg In a faraway kingdom, a king has been betrayed. Deeply hurt and bitterly angry, he vows never to be deceived again. Unfortunately, the king's plan to protect himself will endanger all of the realm's young women, unless one of them will volunteer to marry the king - and surrender her life. To everyone's relief and horror, one young woman steps forward. The daughter of a legendary storyteller, Shahrazad believes it is her destiny to accept this risk and sacrifice herself. On the night of her wedding to the king, Shahrazad begins to weave a tale. Fascinated, the king lets her live night after night. Just when Shahrazad dares to believe that she has found a way to keep her life — and an unexpected love - a treacherous plot will disrupt her plan. Now she can only hope that love is strong enough to save her.

30 review for The Storyteller's Daughter: A Retelling of the Arabian Nights

  1. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    4.5 stars If you didn't happen to catch it from the title, this is a retelling of The Arabian Nights. You know, the one about the woman named Shahrazad who keeps herself from getting killed every morning, by spinning the world's greatest To-Be-Continued story every night. Well, this is her version of the tale. And it's good. Really good. The best part is that it's beautifully written, but the author doesn't bore you to death by describing every grain of sand in the desert. I'm definitely going to 4.5 stars If you didn't happen to catch it from the title, this is a retelling of The Arabian Nights. You know, the one about the woman named Shahrazad who keeps herself from getting killed every morning, by spinning the world's greatest To-Be-Continued story every night. Well, this is her version of the tale. And it's good. Really good. The best part is that it's beautifully written, but the author doesn't bore you to death by describing every grain of sand in the desert. I'm definitely going to be checking out more of these once Upon a Time stories.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Irene Sim

    4,5 Stars! I loved this retelling of the "Arabian Nights" tale. The story itself is so powerful and the writting is so lyrical and tale-like... I devoured it in one sitting. You think you know a story just because you've heard a million versions of it growing up, but I'm really impressed with how Cameron Dokey managed to make it fresh and still stick to the original story. Her characters are vibrant with emotions and faults, they are fatalists and defiants, but most of all they learn from their m 4,5 Stars! I loved this retelling of the "Arabian Nights" tale. The story itself is so powerful and the writting is so lyrical and tale-like... I devoured it in one sitting. You think you know a story just because you've heard a million versions of it growing up, but I'm really impressed with how Cameron Dokey managed to make it fresh and still stick to the original story. Her characters are vibrant with emotions and faults, they are fatalists and defiants, but most of all they learn from their mistakes, they forgive and move on in their life changed. I sure will check out the rest of the "Once Upon A Time" series of this author. If the rest are so masterful as this one, then I'm certain it will be a delight to read them.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Alice

    I would wager that everyone belonging to GoodReads would say that they love books, and love reading. Those of us that are librarians have decided to devote ourselves to the cause. Why is the Story so powerful? In the hands of storyteller Dokey, the maiden Shahrazad who must please the king with her nightly story becomes a metaphor for the Story itself. Will you turn the next page-- or not? Will you open your heart to the story-- or not? Those who do, find that the double power of Story is that it I would wager that everyone belonging to GoodReads would say that they love books, and love reading. Those of us that are librarians have decided to devote ourselves to the cause. Why is the Story so powerful? In the hands of storyteller Dokey, the maiden Shahrazad who must please the king with her nightly story becomes a metaphor for the Story itself. Will you turn the next page-- or not? Will you open your heart to the story-- or not? Those who do, find that the double power of Story is that it reveals hearts, and changes hearts. And so the maiden is able to heal the King from his damaged, betrayed heart. From the prologue: "A story is alive, as you and I are. It is rounded by muscle and sinew. Rushed with blood. Layered with skin, both rough and smooth. At its core lies soft marrow of hard, white bone. A story beats with the heart of every person who has every strained ears to listen. On the breath of the storyteller, it soars." Dokey makes a story soar.

  4. 5 out of 5

    enqi ☁️✨ (hiatus due to college)

    Ever since I read the beautiful, enchanting book that was The Wrath & the Dawn, I've always been on the hunt for retellings of One Thousand and One Nights (collectively known in English as The Arabian Nights). To be honest, I don't know the full details of the original story, only that an evil king took one bride every night and killed her off the next morning, and so a brave young female storyteller stepped up. She told the king one story every night, and the king was so captivated by her stori Ever since I read the beautiful, enchanting book that was The Wrath & the Dawn, I've always been on the hunt for retellings of One Thousand and One Nights (collectively known in English as The Arabian Nights). To be honest, I don't know the full details of the original story, only that an evil king took one bride every night and killed her off the next morning, and so a brave young female storyteller stepped up. She told the king one story every night, and the king was so captivated by her stories that he let her live on the next day, and this went on for 1001 nights. I am not very sure about the ending, though. The Storyteller's Daughter: A Retelling of "The Arabian Nights" was riveting and kept my interest enough to leave me eagerly turning the pages wanting to know what happened next. However, I don't think it brought anything new to the original retelling. Overall, it had lovely writing and was altogether interesting, but this book wouldn't leave a lasting impression on me in the long run. It reminded me of a children's fairy tale: enchanting enough to keep your attention one moment, but easily forgettable the next.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Valerie

    This is definitely one of the top 5 in the series-so far. It has rejuvenated my faith in the series. Although I couldn't give it 5 stars it was pretty close. I was relieved when Shahrazad (I think that’s her name) marries the King before the first quarter of the book ended, since it usually takes longer for Dokey to let the adventure start. So I got to see more of the guy-the-girl-is-supposed-to-fall-in-love-with. I've only read one other book with this retelling so it was a fresher retelling to This is definitely one of the top 5 in the series-so far. It has rejuvenated my faith in the series. Although I couldn't give it 5 stars it was pretty close. I was relieved when Shahrazad (I think that’s her name) marries the King before the first quarter of the book ended, since it usually takes longer for Dokey to let the adventure start. So I got to see more of the guy-the-girl-is-supposed-to-fall-in-love-with. I've only read one other book with this retelling so it was a fresher retelling to me. Dokey writes the book as if she were a storyteller with an audience present, which was the point. Shahrazad is the one who is supposed to be telling the story, so of course she would tell it like a storyteller. When Shahrazad started to tell the story to the King and her sister I was preparing myself to read right on through until she was done, because usually when there is a story within a story I can't help thinking, alright alright I get it, lets just get back to the real story already. I shouldn't have worried, it turned out that I enjoyed the story within the story too. The only thing that irked me was the ending. I couldn't quite make out whether or not I liked it. It's not that it was bad, Shahrazad and the King get their happily ever after, but it seemed a bit...extended. That is the only word I can think of. It's not like the end went on forever, and I do like knowing all the answers by the end of books, but I think Dokey gave more information then she needed to. It kind of let the feeling of the book fade.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Stoolfire

    Devour The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh and need another Arabian Nights retelling? Try the 2002 release called The Storyteller's Daughter by Cameron Dokey. The author's writing is absolutely beautiful and truly has a fairytale quality about it. It's a short novel but it has just about everything you could want in a retelling of a classic. I think I need to try more from this author and continue this series of retellings. Devour The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh and need another Arabian Nights retelling? Try the 2002 release called The Storyteller's Daughter by Cameron Dokey. The author's writing is absolutely beautiful and truly has a fairytale quality about it. It's a short novel but it has just about everything you could want in a retelling of a classic. I think I need to try more from this author and continue this series of retellings.

  7. 4 out of 5

    snowplum

    Though I'm only giving this book 3 stars, I liked it overall a lot more than you probably think is 3 stars' worth. Give me a moment and I'll try to explain. Dokey attempts a revisionist version of the classic tale of Shahrazad, incorporating some material from The Arabian Nights, omitting a lot of it, and then creating an elaborate frame that allows all of the characters you'd care about in a happy fairy tale version to be sympathetic, despite doing things like proclaiming that they're going to m Though I'm only giving this book 3 stars, I liked it overall a lot more than you probably think is 3 stars' worth. Give me a moment and I'll try to explain. Dokey attempts a revisionist version of the classic tale of Shahrazad, incorporating some material from The Arabian Nights, omitting a lot of it, and then creating an elaborate frame that allows all of the characters you'd care about in a happy fairy tale version to be sympathetic, despite doing things like proclaiming that they're going to marry virgins, spend one night with them, and then execute them. (Ahem, King Shahrayar. Not most people's idea of a romantic hero.) The thing is, Dokey succeeds at what she's trying to do admirably well. Trying to keep myself in a fairy tale frame of mind, I managed to like Shahrayar (who didn't actually end up killing any wives in this version, of course); his brother Shazaman (who did behead a cheating wife and her lover, but one is supposed to accept that this is a suitable punishment for infidelity...); a young man named 'Ajib who orchestrates a major betrayal of Shahrazad and Shahrayar, but ultimately pulls a double-double cross and saves them from being executed; and of course Shahrazad, who is a brilliant storyteller and not at all crazy (despite sequestering herself from the world and not leaving her room for something like 8 years). Beyond that, there are times when Dokey's prose is of a much higher caliber than you're probably expecting from a fairy tale type book marketed at young adults, and I would happily quote it to adults I know with excellent taste in writing. [I will say this, however, about the prose: there's a short section at the beginning of the book in the first person that some readers think is REALLY incredible, and I happen to think it's a bit overdone and doesn't belong here. I think Dokey's most effective and sophisticated prose comes in later passages, only once she has abandoned the first-person introduction and stopped trying to show off quite so blatantly. She is clearly a gifted writer, and I think she was really determined to come out of the gate not being a generic YA writer with a limited vocabulary and a non-threatening voice... but once she got that out of her system, she actually did better at proving her case by writing to suit the story instead of to establish her lit cred.] The problem is, I find myself hesitating to recommend this book to people I think might like it because it's also all too easy for me to think that they might not like it because these characters live in a rather brutal old fashioned middle eastern world where things happen like beheading unfaithful spouses and kings issuing proclamations that they will bed and murder virgins while their whole country just sits back in misery and terror, waiting for the slayings. I think whether any given person can suspend his/her disbelief and enjoy this story depends not only on their predisposition and ideals, but also their mood on any given day. I was in the closest thing to the right frame of mind when I read it, and there were parts of The Storyteller's Daughter I thought were really beautiful and moving. It definitely did not strike me as immature, much less childish or simplistic. But I won't deny that Shahrayar is a hard sell as a sympathetic character, and even though Dokey does as well as anyone could to make him a Handsome Prince, I can see why you might choose to look elsewhere if you're in the mood for a fairy tale. This is structured like a fairy tale because it's so blatantly a Happily Ever After version of the story, but the amount of psychological complexity can lead you to take the story seriously as more than a fairy tale, and then it starts to fall apart because most of us can't really accept and forgive ideas like murdering innocents... or even unfaithful spouses. It's a little sad that by making the story more sophisticated and emotionally complex, Dokey may have exceeded the bounds of what the classic tale of The Arabian Nights can sustain as a romance. The focus of the original was the tales told by Shahrazad, and that might be the wiser course of action to stick to. But if you think you can suspend your discomfort with some of the core concepts of The Arabian Nights and if you're interested in non-standard revisionist fairy tales, I would recommend this book. It's unique and special in several ways, and even brought me close to tears more than once.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Elevetha

    Retelling of "Arabain Nights". My favorite of the Once Upon A Time series. The writing is lovely. Insta-love is not to be found. The characters are believeable and likable. Retelling of "Arabain Nights". My favorite of the Once Upon A Time series. The writing is lovely. Insta-love is not to be found. The characters are believeable and likable.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Karissa

    Previously I have read "Beauty Sleep" by Cameron Dokey, and I liked the story. So, I was excited to read another fairy tale retelling by Dokey. Unfortunately I found this retelling of "Arabian Nights" hard to get through and pretty boring. Shahrazad is the daughter of a great storyteller. When the King is betrayed by his wife, his heart turns to stone and he vows to marry a young woman each new moon and kill her the next morning. That is unless a young woman comes forward voluntarily knowing she Previously I have read "Beauty Sleep" by Cameron Dokey, and I liked the story. So, I was excited to read another fairy tale retelling by Dokey. Unfortunately I found this retelling of "Arabian Nights" hard to get through and pretty boring. Shahrazad is the daughter of a great storyteller. When the King is betrayed by his wife, his heart turns to stone and he vows to marry a young woman each new moon and kill her the next morning. That is unless a young woman comes forward voluntarily knowing she will die the next day. Shahrazad decides it is her destiny to step forward and every morning her life is sparred as she tells a story that has no end. I had a lot of trouble getting through this book, even though it is relatively short. The language is stilted and somewhat difficult to read. Shahrazad is an uninspiring heroine that, despite talking about how women are always wiser, ends up showing herself to be a weaker character. None of the surrounding characters are any more inspiring. They are all un-emotional and two dimensional. The stories that Shahrazad tells all have a very transparent moral to them and I didn't find them to be very interesting, engaging, or surprising. I has hoped that either the story itself or the story Shahrazad tells would engage me, but I struggled to get through them despite the fact that the book is very short. The writing seemed, as I said, a bit stilted and immature. I had trouble telling that this book was written by the same author that had written "Beauty Sleep". There is no description of the world, and little description of what the characters are feeling. All in all this book was a disappointment to me. I am still planning on reading a couple other of Dokey's fairy tale retellings since I did enjoy "Beauty Sleep." Overall if you are looking for an interesting retelling of "Arabian Nights" to read, I would look elsewhere.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Dlora

    The Storyteller's Daughter is the retelling of the Arabian Nights story, so now you know the plot . . . or do you? The narrator is Shahrazad, the storyteller of a thousand and one nights. You think you already know the story but she says that you really know only a small part, and what she is about to relate has never before been told. The book's prologue is probably my favorite part -- Shahrazad comes alive, speaking poetically and directly to you about the nature of stories and catching your in The Storyteller's Daughter is the retelling of the Arabian Nights story, so now you know the plot . . . or do you? The narrator is Shahrazad, the storyteller of a thousand and one nights. You think you already know the story but she says that you really know only a small part, and what she is about to relate has never before been told. The book's prologue is probably my favorite part -- Shahrazad comes alive, speaking poetically and directly to you about the nature of stories and catching your interest: "A story is alive, as you and I are. . . . A story beats with the heart of every person who has ever strained ears to listen. On the breath of the storyteller, it soars." In this book, we get to hear not only Shahrazad's own story, but also some of the fantastical stories she tells to keep herself alive each night. We learn why the king was so coldhearted and how Shahrazad brings him back to life and love. We follow palace intrigues and watch characters grow. The book is actually probably a five-star book except that I always wish for more in a fairy tale genre. I want more details of everyday life rather than the sweeping broad strokes where princesses are beautiful and good and kings are wise and brave and everybody lives happily ever after except for the vanquished ogres and dragons (not that this story has ogres and dragons, but it does have disloyal queens and jealous servants). Fairytale retellings generally do add more meat to the Story, and Beauty by Robin McKinley is my standard. However, this was a good story, much to enjoy about it! You'll like it, I think.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Christine

    I'm not the target audience for this book. Right now, I looked at all the wonderful reviews of this novel and wonder if the people read the same book I did. Maybe I'm too picky. Go read any translation of nights instead of this. I have problems with this book. The first is that the character of Shahrazad makes no sense. All of sudden she's blind. All of sudden she's a wonderful story teller who understands people even though she avoided people by locking herself in her room. By the way, Shahrazad, I'm not the target audience for this book. Right now, I looked at all the wonderful reviews of this novel and wonder if the people read the same book I did. Maybe I'm too picky. Go read any translation of nights instead of this. I have problems with this book. The first is that the character of Shahrazad makes no sense. All of sudden she's blind. All of sudden she's a wonderful story teller who understands people even though she avoided people by locking herself in her room. By the way, Shahrazad, her sister, and her mother are the only good women in the story. It is very unclear why Shahrazad would do what she does (the mini-series was even better here). Shahrazad is perfect! She's wonderful! (I'm going to hurl!). Her step mother was evil, but that's okay cause she died in child birth when she gave birth to a girl.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Pamela(AllHoney)

    I'm new to the YA fantasy genre so I'm not really sure how to review in comparison to others in this genre. It was a easy, enjoyable read without a ton of filler. The story was simple and straight-forward. Something I think my daughter could and probably should read. (If I could get her into reading). I'm new to the YA fantasy genre so I'm not really sure how to review in comparison to others in this genre. It was a easy, enjoyable read without a ton of filler. The story was simple and straight-forward. Something I think my daughter could and probably should read. (If I could get her into reading).

  13. 4 out of 5

    Mary Bronson

    I really enjoyed reading this re-telling of the Arabian Nights. I thought the characters and plot were very well written. I liked how this story is written like it was being told to a set of readers. Shahrazad was such a great main character. I also love the different chapters had a few stories. I enjoyed reading those and they had great lessons.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Loraine

    SUMMARY: "ONCE UPON A TIME"IS TIMELESS In a faraway kingdom, a king has been betrayed. Deeply hurt and bitterly angry, he vows never to be deceived again. Unfortunately, the king's plan to protect himself will endanger all of the realm's young women, unless one of them will volunteer to marry the king -- and surrender her life. To everyone's relief and horror, one young woman steps forward. The daughter of a legendary storyteller, Shahrazad believes it is her destiny to accept this risk and sacr SUMMARY: "ONCE UPON A TIME"IS TIMELESS In a faraway kingdom, a king has been betrayed. Deeply hurt and bitterly angry, he vows never to be deceived again. Unfortunately, the king's plan to protect himself will endanger all of the realm's young women, unless one of them will volunteer to marry the king -- and surrender her life. To everyone's relief and horror, one young woman steps forward. The daughter of a legendary storyteller, Shahrazad believes it is her destiny to accept this risk and sacrifice herself. On the night of her wedding to the king, Shahrazad begins to weave a tale. Fascinated, the king lets her live night after night. Just when Shahrazad dares to believe that she has found a way to keep her life -- and an unexpected love -- a treacherous plot will disrupt her plan. Now she can only hope that love is strong enough to save her. REVIEW: As much as I read as a child, I somehow never read The Arabian Nights the story of Shahrazad and her 1001 nights of storytelling to the king. I found this a delightfully quick, clean read of an adult version of this fairy tale. Dokey added a few twists of her own but basically followed the gist of the fairy tale. The plot is not deep but the characters are interesting and like most fairy tales there is definitely a moral to the story. The ending felt a bit rushed but that is true of most "happily ever after" fairy tales. It will be interesting to compare others in this series as they are by a wide variety of authors. Dokey also has others she penned for this series. FAVORITE QUOTES: "...I should know my own value and never seek to be what I am not." "If eyes are all one needs to see and know another's heart truly than answer me this: When you look at me now do you see and understand my heart?" "My father always told me I should never taken anything essential for granted lest I lose it,"

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lady Knight

    Cameron Dokey does a splendid job with her retelling of the Arabian Nights! I loved every page of it and read it cover to cover in a couple of hours. Definitely one of my top favorites in the "Once Upon a Time..." series. Shahrazad is the daughter of the vizier and a storyteller. Shahrayar is the crown prince. After his father's death, Shahrayar divides the kingdom between himself and his brother, and as the years pass great peace comes to the land. However, both brothers soon discover that their Cameron Dokey does a splendid job with her retelling of the Arabian Nights! I loved every page of it and read it cover to cover in a couple of hours. Definitely one of my top favorites in the "Once Upon a Time..." series. Shahrazad is the daughter of the vizier and a storyteller. Shahrayar is the crown prince. After his father's death, Shahrayar divides the kingdom between himself and his brother, and as the years pass great peace comes to the land. However, both brothers soon discover that their wives have been unfaithful. Shahrayar is so distraught that proclaims that since it is unseemly for a king to have no wife, he will wed one bride each new moon. She would live for the night and then be killed the following morning. If, however, a willing bride steps forth, only she shall die and any that follow would live out their lives entrapped in the palace. Months go by without any maiden stepping forward. Shahrazad believes that it is her destiny to help heal the king's heart, so she tricks her father into helping her become the bride. She has a plan to keep herself alive long enough to change the king's heart. Despite being blind, she has become a storyteller like her mother and is determined to use her skill to soften the king. What she doesn't plan on is falling for her husband... Meanwhile, the brothers of Shahrayar's first wife are growing bitter and jealous. They hatch a plot to deprive Shahrayar of both his throne and his life. They even plant one of their own in the position of trusted servant to the king... As the days pass Shahrayar finds himself falling in love with Shahrazad. But what makes a king strong? Making iron clad commands and following them, or being willing to change and adapt?

  16. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    I am surprised at how much I enjoyed this book! Shahrazad's own story is told, along with the stories she weaves, against an authentic ancient middle-eastern background, complete with desert heat, tribal loyalty, exiled kings who are locked away instead of killed, and women who use their beauty and skill-- and sometimes cunning-- to control the men they love, and thus the history of their kingdoms. (One quote: After finishing a very long story..."I notice that once again it is the women who are I am surprised at how much I enjoyed this book! Shahrazad's own story is told, along with the stories she weaves, against an authentic ancient middle-eastern background, complete with desert heat, tribal loyalty, exiled kings who are locked away instead of killed, and women who use their beauty and skill-- and sometimes cunning-- to control the men they love, and thus the history of their kingdoms. (One quote: After finishing a very long story..."I notice that once again it is the women who are most wise," Shahrayar said. "It is important for even a tale of magic to ring true," Shahrazad replied, her face solemn. Then she smiled.) Through it all is the theme that knowing and then being willing to reveal your own heart is necessary for true happiness. All around a very enjoyable, and thought-provoking retelling of A Thousand and One Arabian Nights.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Azbaqiyah

    Plot - It's a retelling but somehow I don't feel like it. It just you add something to in between the original story. But I enjoy all the Sharazard's story... Character - The character name are all the same...Sharazad, Shazaman, Sharayar, Dinarzard...and I kept confused because of it... World Building - It's didn't descirbe where this place takes...but the author do mention about India and Indochina so I asume it's takes place at our world. Writing Style - Remember when you reading Aesop Fable? Cam Plot - It's a retelling but somehow I don't feel like it. It just you add something to in between the original story. But I enjoy all the Sharazard's story... Character - The character name are all the same...Sharazad, Shazaman, Sharayar, Dinarzard...and I kept confused because of it... World Building - It's didn't descirbe where this place takes...but the author do mention about India and Indochina so I asume it's takes place at our world. Writing Style - Remember when you reading Aesop Fable? Cameron managed to create the same thing! The reading mood was the same. And she used first and second POV as if the character communicate with the reader. Stars - I like it so this book earn 3 ★.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    There are so many wonderful reviews about this book that I think maybe I missed something. I'm afraid I just didn't enjoy it. I struggled through every page thinking that maybe it would get more interesting. I just never found what others did. It is nonsensical to believe that Shahrazad could have such insight into people without ever having spent any time with any. The stories that were found in the cloth featured wise, strong women yet in the world around Shahrazad none of those women really e There are so many wonderful reviews about this book that I think maybe I missed something. I'm afraid I just didn't enjoy it. I struggled through every page thinking that maybe it would get more interesting. I just never found what others did. It is nonsensical to believe that Shahrazad could have such insight into people without ever having spent any time with any. The stories that were found in the cloth featured wise, strong women yet in the world around Shahrazad none of those women really existed. I just found the tale to be boring and it lacked flow. I'll try another one in his series though. Maybe this one was a bad choice to start with.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Janell

    Surprisingly, I enjoyed this one even more than Beauty Sleep. I wouldn't necessarily call this a fairy tale and the writing style was a little different, but it was the characters that I really enjoyed the most. I also like stories when the hero and heroine must rise above the challenges they face, including ones they've unknowingly created for themselves. Like many fairy tales, it has a little treachery but unlike most fairy tales, however, this one has some blood being spilled. This is defini Surprisingly, I enjoyed this one even more than Beauty Sleep. I wouldn't necessarily call this a fairy tale and the writing style was a little different, but it was the characters that I really enjoyed the most. I also like stories when the hero and heroine must rise above the challenges they face, including ones they've unknowingly created for themselves. Like many fairy tales, it has a little treachery but unlike most fairy tales, however, this one has some blood being spilled. This is definitely YF so the stars reflect a book in this genre.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Trisha

    This was a very odd re-telling. Told more like a bible verse or parable, it had a lot of "and so it came to pass" and "remember, seek that which you are meant to be and not what you are not" kind of stuff. This is not my favorite way to read a story. It's a personal preference, but I feel like it keeps me away from the characters. As I'm a character reader, this takes away from my enjoying the story through the character - instead it just feels like....a story. Something on paper that never come This was a very odd re-telling. Told more like a bible verse or parable, it had a lot of "and so it came to pass" and "remember, seek that which you are meant to be and not what you are not" kind of stuff. This is not my favorite way to read a story. It's a personal preference, but I feel like it keeps me away from the characters. As I'm a character reader, this takes away from my enjoying the story through the character - instead it just feels like....a story. Something on paper that never comes alive. I'm glad this works for others, it's just not for me.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Catherine

    Honestly, this was a nice change of pace compared to what I've been reading lately. It was quick, witty, and kept me intrigued throughout the whole story. I definitely recommend this to anyone who enjoys fairy tales and is in a bit of a reading slump. Honestly, this was a nice change of pace compared to what I've been reading lately. It was quick, witty, and kept me intrigued throughout the whole story. I definitely recommend this to anyone who enjoys fairy tales and is in a bit of a reading slump.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Hafshie

    Once Upon a Time’s The Storyteller’s Daughter (Cameron Dokey) Dec. 1-2, 2014 A fairy tale that is new to my hearing. I was hesitant to read it because I’m not a big fan of fairy tales, but I really don’t know what I have eaten that made my mind open up this book. I guess I just want some new taste of magical story with moral lessons. I’m now planning to read this Once Upon a Time series or collection of fairy tales. I’m expecting to discover new fairytales which I haven’t seen or learned before. I Once Upon a Time’s The Storyteller’s Daughter (Cameron Dokey) Dec. 1-2, 2014 A fairy tale that is new to my hearing. I was hesitant to read it because I’m not a big fan of fairy tales, but I really don’t know what I have eaten that made my mind open up this book. I guess I just want some new taste of magical story with moral lessons. I’m now planning to read this Once Upon a Time series or collection of fairy tales. I’m expecting to discover new fairytales which I haven’t seen or learned before. I’m also open to some retelling of these classic fairytales. The story has a good moral lesson about allowing your heart to see the good things that the eyes are blind to see. The story tells the tale of a great storyteller aka drabardi. Shahrazad was born to be different from every child. Aside from the fact that her mother came from faraway land, her mother is also blind. The people don’t like her mother, Maju, so they came to hate Shahrazad also when she was born. She, too, wasn’t liked by other children. She has no friends so she was always alone. One day she was bullied by other children and she got bruised and asked her mother why she was being treated that way. Maju said that she was different. But Shahrazad doesn’t want to be different she wants to be like them. In order for Maju to make her daughter understand her life she told him a tale that is similar to her life. From the tale Shahrazad learned a great lesson which was: “That I should know my own value and never seek to be what I am not.” I don’t want to give much of the story away so I won’t give a complete plot though. I was already making it, but thought of it better not. If you love tales, this is surely a good one I would love to recommend.  Really! Really! It’s not just the lesson that you can extract from it, but the uniqueness of the story. It’s a tale that was not told much. It’s my first encounter with this, but it’s really good.  It’s a story that contains more than one story. If you want to know what I mean, then read it, NOW!. Jk! :D Some passages of the story that I want to share with you are: “… If eyes are all one needs to see and know another’s heart truly then answer me this: When you look at me now do you see and understand my heart?” “Though you are a king. I see that you are still as many other men are. You do not see what you have, but long to see what you have not.” The statement below is debatable. You can see from it how the old century treats women. Nowadays, we can see the big difference. Women and men are almost equal when it comes to human rights. “Women are weak creatures,” the third brother said, now picking up the refrain. “They require great guidance and careful watching.” Surely, “freedom” was a word that had no place in a woman’s vocabulary, “ he went on. In fact her vocabulary contain as few words as possible: Husband. Obedience. Duty. Hearth. Home. These words a woman should learn well. If she knew these, she need know little else.” “There is no sense on dwelling on what cannot be altered.” “With the eyes of the heart,” the fisherman replied. “They alone will show you the treasure you seek. If you fail in this, you will suffer the same fate as all the others.”

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ashanti Davis

    The Storyteller's Daughter is a wonderful story, by far my favorite book. Its a different but more remarkable telling of the Arabian Nights. The book portrays a faraway kingdom, where a king has been betrayed, deeply hurt and bitterly angry, he vows never to be deceived again. Unfortunately, the king's plan to protect himself will endanger all of the realm's young women, unless one of them will volunteer to marry the king and surrender her life. Sharazada steps forward. Now Sharazada is the daug The Storyteller's Daughter is a wonderful story, by far my favorite book. Its a different but more remarkable telling of the Arabian Nights. The book portrays a faraway kingdom, where a king has been betrayed, deeply hurt and bitterly angry, he vows never to be deceived again. Unfortunately, the king's plan to protect himself will endanger all of the realm's young women, unless one of them will volunteer to marry the king and surrender her life. Sharazada steps forward. Now Sharazada is the daughter of Maju the Great and Almighty storyteller and the King's Royal Vizier and best friend. Sharazada was made fun of by everyone in the palace walls because her long dark black silk like hair was different and one of a kind and her eyes had a sparkle and not a shine and that the fact her mother was blind and soon shall she be. And then When the Day Of her mother parted she became ill with a disease that left her blind. You see this book is not only a fantasy, but its a love story. Also each part of the story holds a new chapter in the characters life. I recommend this story to everyone. If your a hopeless romantic you would love this book, if your a action pack guy or thriller fan this book would leave you shivering . The author really took her time writing a book to please all her audiences. The book's prologue is probably my favorite part because, Shahrazad comes alive, speaking poetically and directly to you about the nature of stories and catching your interest: "A story is alive, as you and I are. . . . A story beats with the heart of every person who has ever strained ears to listen. On the breath of the storyteller, it soars." In this book, we get to hear not only Shahrazad's own story, but also some of the fantastical stories she tells to keep herself alive each night. We learn why the king was so coldhearted and how Shahrazad brings him back to life and love. We follow palace intrigues and watch characters grow. The book is a must read. Also the title is very affective. I saw the word Storyteller and picked it up right away and I don't regret it. The book's title fits it so well its ridiculous. You would think since the book says Storyteller's daughter its going to be about some girl who's the daughter of a Storyteller, and its not. Its much more than that and I really hope you decide to read this wonderful book.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Josephina

    As I've written before, the "Once Upon a Time" series has been a bit iffy to me. I've enjoyed the concept more than the execution, overall. Because of that, I was probably more lenient with this particular addition. I would probably be harsher towards it, otherwise. The Storyteller's Daughter is one of the stronger books in the series, I think. It's not perfect. The writing style is a bit muddled. There is some head-hopping. The stories within the stories are a little transparent. The book held m As I've written before, the "Once Upon a Time" series has been a bit iffy to me. I've enjoyed the concept more than the execution, overall. Because of that, I was probably more lenient with this particular addition. I would probably be harsher towards it, otherwise. The Storyteller's Daughter is one of the stronger books in the series, I think. It's not perfect. The writing style is a bit muddled. There is some head-hopping. The stories within the stories are a little transparent. The book held my attention throughout, as I was able to get through it in one sitting. I don't know that it held my attention enough that I would have picked it up again, if I'd had to put it down midway through. That said, I enjoyed this book - more than I expected to, as there's something about the writing style that made it difficult for me to emotionally connect with the characters. I didn't love them, but I didn't dislike them, either. I will admit that I was impressed by Dokey's efforts to make the king likeable and sympathetic. It isn't easy to make readers care for a character who the very essence of the story dictates will take an endless series of wives and then kill them. Dokey did better with this than I would have expected. This is probably the first book that I thought was pretty much just the right length for the story. The books in this series tend to run a little short, for me, so that the end is rushed. The climax is perhaps a little hurried, I think, but not glaringly so. If the story had carried much longer, I would probably have lost interest; too much shorter, and I think it would have felt unfinished. The Storyteller's Daughter wasn't my favorite book in the series, but it was one of the stronger ones, in my opinion. I appreciated that Dokey tackled a more unusual fairytale. The Arabian Nights isn't a story that is often retold, so it was nice to see it included.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Angela

    Cameron Dokey's retellings are always creative and fun to read. This is no exception, but it fell short. As much as I enjoyed it, it lost me somewhere along the way. In the beginning, I was very confused with the names. They're all so similar: Shahrazad, Shahrayar, Shazaman. I got the hang of it after a few chapters, thank goodness. I loved how the book started out. Dokey's writing really is beautiful. The prologue completely caught my interest. A story is alive, as you and I are. It's so fitting Cameron Dokey's retellings are always creative and fun to read. This is no exception, but it fell short. As much as I enjoyed it, it lost me somewhere along the way. In the beginning, I was very confused with the names. They're all so similar: Shahrazad, Shahrayar, Shazaman. I got the hang of it after a few chapters, thank goodness. I loved how the book started out. Dokey's writing really is beautiful. The prologue completely caught my interest. A story is alive, as you and I are. It's so fitting. But not long after the prologue (just a few chapters), I started to lose interest. So many times, I read the same page over and over again. Because even though I was reading, I wasn't actually reading. My mind would constantly wander to something else. The story picked up somewhere in the middle. From there on, I really enjoyed it. I didn't like the characters too much in this retelling. I feel like even though they came up often, I don't really know them. And this includes the main characters; they were puzzling. I don't really understand the love between Shahrazad and Shahrayar. They fall for each other so fast, before they even really know each other. The ending was nice. I thought the part with (view spoiler)[Dinarzad and 'Ajib (hide spoiler)] was sweet (but it was only about line). (: The Storyteller's Daughter was enjoyable as a whole, but what I really enjoyed reading was the stories within the story—the stories Shahrazad tells. They were entertaining and held my interest more than the actual book. Usually I complain that Dokey's retellings are too short. This one is just the opposite. I felt like it was too long (even though it's totally not). That would be because of my lack of interest in some chapters. Overall, this book was just okay. I expected a bit more out of it, but I enjoyed it. It's not the author's best though.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Sandy

    story inspired by the magical and romantic tale of Shahrazad from The Arabian Nights. When betrayed by his queen, Shahrayar's heart turns coldly to stone. He vows to take a new wife once each month, at the full moon, but to keep her only one night, killing her in the morning. Shahrazad, the 17-year-old blind daughter of the king's vizier and Maju, a blind storyteller, concocts a plan to reach the king's heart. She will begin a story each night that will not be finished in the morning. Three sto story inspired by the magical and romantic tale of Shahrazad from The Arabian Nights. When betrayed by his queen, Shahrayar's heart turns coldly to stone. He vows to take a new wife once each month, at the full moon, but to keep her only one night, killing her in the morning. Shahrazad, the 17-year-old blind daughter of the king's vizier and Maju, a blind storyteller, concocts a plan to reach the king's heart. She will begin a story each night that will not be finished in the morning. Three stories-within-a-story run through the retelling, all with parallel themes and morals. This is a delightful retelling, tweaked by the author to create a fresh, often quirky feminist who is not afraid to speak her mind. Indeed, the king remarks, with humor, that wise women people Shahrazad's stories, but the kings and princes are idiots. Dokey's style blends just the right amount of old-fashioned phrases and figurative language with touches of contemporary tongue-in-cheek humor. The author actually manages an element of suspense in the present-tense retelling, even though readers familiar with the tale will know its outcome. There's plenty to tantalize teens: tower imprisonments, decapitations, intrigues of the court, an attempted coup, riots, fighting, and, of course, the blossoming love between Shahrazad and Shahrayar. An appended note includes more about the tale and the author's retelling. Pair this title with Susan Fletcher's Shadow Spinner (Atheneum, 1998) for two different versions of the story of Shahrazad.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Bex

    Based on the Arabian Nights this story is that of a king (Shahrayar) with a curse that he shall never love again, instead he will take one wife every full moon that will be killed in the morning. Then the blind Shahrazad steps forward and makes a plan to tell the king a story that will take many nights to tell, he will love it so much he'll keep her alive to hear the end. With stories in the story this is a book that keeps your attention until the last page. It has a strong female lead that is w Based on the Arabian Nights this story is that of a king (Shahrayar) with a curse that he shall never love again, instead he will take one wife every full moon that will be killed in the morning. Then the blind Shahrazad steps forward and makes a plan to tell the king a story that will take many nights to tell, he will love it so much he'll keep her alive to hear the end. With stories in the story this is a book that keeps your attention until the last page. It has a strong female lead that is well developed, interesting and certainly likeable. I think the rest of the characters also stand out, especially the king whose thoughts and feelings are portrayed as much as Shahrazad's. I have never known the story of the Arabian Nights and so I found this refreshing and different. I don't know how much like the original it is or if there are any aspects that Dokey developed more than other writers. I would say that this is a book for aged 10 and above if only because sometimes the stories within stories can be slightly confusing, but I'm really not very good at suggesting ages. I preferred it to "beauty sleep" because I thought it was more interesting and I liked the ending better. I also felt that there was more of the story. It is a very quick, simple, interesting tale that is beautifully written. I would've only enjoyed it more if it were longer.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Ann-Marie

    This book was not at all what I was expecting (which I thought would be a flat, plain retelling of a fairytale I wasn't very interested in... hmmm why did I decide to read it in the first place if I was that much of a pessimist...uh right, back to the review!) What a wonderful surprise this book turned out to be. In the first few pages it sets the scene, tone and depiction of character. The story (and subsequent stories in the book as told by Shahazad) were just magical. Page turning. Exquisitel This book was not at all what I was expecting (which I thought would be a flat, plain retelling of a fairytale I wasn't very interested in... hmmm why did I decide to read it in the first place if I was that much of a pessimist...uh right, back to the review!) What a wonderful surprise this book turned out to be. In the first few pages it sets the scene, tone and depiction of character. The story (and subsequent stories in the book as told by Shahazad) were just magical. Page turning. Exquisitely written. The characters were a touch cliché but being a fairytale retelling you can over look that surely. The main villains in the story were a tad slow to turn up, but then with her King's decree hanging over her head I suppose he was enough darkness to begin. I did find the relationships so detailed and well formed at the beginning of the story, for example Shahrazad and her sister Dinarzad as well as Sharhrayar and his brother Shazaman, seemed to disappear in the middle of the tale and resume at the end. I did like the political scheming to bring down the usurpers, it was not too intricate or complex. So for a book I thought would be a 'yeah, it was ok' kinda rating, Cameron Dokey's Storytellers Daughter has come very very very close to my favourite stories of all time. I guess that's the thing, you never know when a book is going to surprise you! Happy reading!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra Ray

    After reading a book in this Once Upon a Time series by a different author with which I was less than impressed, I wasn't sure what to expect when I opened this book. Cameron Dokey, however, put my mind at immediate ease with her beautiful writing style, and in 218 pages she weaved an even more beautiful story. I wasn't familiar with the story of One Thousand and One Nights beyond what was presented in Wishbone, so again I didn't know what to expect. All I can say is that I thoroughly enjoyed re After reading a book in this Once Upon a Time series by a different author with which I was less than impressed, I wasn't sure what to expect when I opened this book. Cameron Dokey, however, put my mind at immediate ease with her beautiful writing style, and in 218 pages she weaved an even more beautiful story. I wasn't familiar with the story of One Thousand and One Nights beyond what was presented in Wishbone, so again I didn't know what to expect. All I can say is that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this story. For some authors it would be difficult to show a story through multiple points of view and on multiple story dimensions, but Cameron Dokey did it wonderfully. Never was a confused or lost, and the voice of the narrator was consistent no matter what pov or dimension the reader is in (since it is ultimately told by one person). I was impressed, to say the least, when I finished the last page. Can't wait to get my hands on the rest of the books in this series! My only problem with this book was a personal one. I'm a bit of a pokemon nerd, so whenever I read Shahrazad's name in my head, I pictured Charizard. Again, a personal thing that is no fault of anyone since Shahrazad's character is significantly older than any pokemon. I just thought I'd share that tidbit for no apparent reason :P

  30. 4 out of 5

    trishchakri

    "My tale was one of a king so foolish he almost lost everything for not being able to see what was right in front of him." The entire story can be summed up in that one statement. After being betrayed by his wife, a king forgets how to love and trust. He closes his heart to the world. But since his kingdom needs a queen, he comes up with a plan to marry a maiden every month and kill her the next morning. A one night queen (It is ridiculous, I know!). The people of the kingdom, who till now loved "My tale was one of a king so foolish he almost lost everything for not being able to see what was right in front of him." The entire story can be summed up in that one statement. After being betrayed by his wife, a king forgets how to love and trust. He closes his heart to the world. But since his kingdom needs a queen, he comes up with a plan to marry a maiden every month and kill her the next morning. A one night queen (It is ridiculous, I know!). The people of the kingdom, who till now loved their king, begin to hate him and are terrified. To save the kingdom and their king, the daughter of a storyteller sacrifices herself by marrying the king willingly. By her tales, she hopes to heal the king and save herself. How she does this and what happens forms the rest of the novel. This is a very profound and thought-provoking story. It tells us about how people can lose their way completely when they don't trust and love others. And how they do not see what they seek even if it is in front of them. And how to help such a person. I didn't read the original story, so can't compare this retelling with that. But, really enjoyed reading this. (view spoiler)[I would have preferred a happy ending. No need to tell us that everyone will die eventually. So, cut off 0.5 points (hide spoiler)] A solid 4.5 rating.

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