Monday, December 12, 2011

Once Upon A Time "The Book" Available For Pre-Order (& Some Notes On Henry's Book)

You may have noticed in a previous post I mentioned there was a fairy tale collection book coming from ABC's Once Upon A Time creators. That book is now available for pre-order.

It's available both through or, though the ABC site's release date says 12/20 while Amazon says 12/27. (Interesting note - the ABC link has cafepress as part of its HTML address - very odd.)

Although the Amazon website makes mention of an ebook, the ABC site implies a print book with shipping dates. Perhaps there's an ebook version as well and it's the only version with the pilot script? Not sure.
 Here's the blurb:
This eBook features a special enhancement: the full pilot episode's script from the hit ABC show, Once Upon A Time. This beautifully illustrated collection of 30 tales from far and wide includes... Snow White, Hansel and Grethel, Cinderella, The Frog Prince, Rumpelstiltskin, The Bremen Town Musicians, The Elves, Little Red Cap, The Fisherman and His Wife, The Sleeping Beauty, Tom Thumb, Rapunzel. . . and many more.
"Once upon a time . . ." Four simple words that, after more than two centuries, still have the ability to transport readers to lands of mystery, intrigue, and betrayal, life and death, love and abandon. Timeless are the tales of the Brothers Grimm who, in an effort to preserve native folklore, unwittingly crafted a cornerstone of Western literature.
With this book of fairy tales, beautifully illustrated by artist Kevin Tong, reacquaint yourself with the stories and characters you know and love. Run through the forest with Little Red Cap. Attend the ball with Cinderella. Eat an apple with Snow White. From witches to fairies, evil queens to kindly kings, frog princes and sleeping beauties, the Grimm tales are classics that are truly meant to be shared with young and old alike.
With a foreword written by the creators of ABC's show Once Upon a Time, we see that these classic tales continue to endure and inspire more storytelling. The series brings some of these classic characters to life in a bold reimagination of the fairy tale world. 
We invite you to reacquaint yourself with these magical stories and be transported once again with Once Upon a Time.
While I'm not very impressed with how the cover looks (first impression is of quick and cheap digital-for-web-only work) I'm hoping it will look much better in print. The illustrations are supposed to be lovely and include the poster artwork being released by Mondo and created by artist Kevin Tong (as shown in this post HERE). As you can see from his website, Kevin Tong has done some incredible and beautiful graphic/poster/print and illustration work so I have my fingers crossed for good things. :)

I'm sure you're just as curious as I am as to which version of the text they've used for each story - a Grimm/Dover version or their own based on one of the Grimm volumes. You can download a preview of the Rumpelstiltskin story/text HERE right now to see (scroll down for the PDF link).

Since we're on the subject of books and the ABC show, I'm going to add an aside here about the fairy tale book Henry is obsessed with in Once:
What the heck is going on with that??! There's a fantastic opportunity for a gorgeous (or at least classic looking) fairy tale book and all the key pictures/'illustrations' are digital frame captures/stills that have been put through a poster filter. These, quite frankly, look nasty.
Especially when, in turning a page on screen to get TO that image we flip past gorgeous Arthur Rackham prints.

(Sacrilege! Travesty! Yes, I'm being dramatic but I have quite a gut reaction to this key prop!) 

Why, oh why have they done it this way? There are so many incredibly talented artists (ie. hundreds in LA alone) who could easily draw and render beautiful and appropriate book illustrations representing the show and characters, let alone create a beautifully bound volume that every kid with an imagination would be drawn to opening. It's so badly done I actually cringe every time the book comes on screen. :/ For such a key item for the whole series I think it's worth a revisit and a bigger budget. (Plus think of the marketing potential!)

Back to the subject of Once merchandise, there's a lot more now available, t-shirts, mugs and more. My favorite would have to be the Snow White "wanted" poster. I wish there were more pieces like this, using items from the show itself, or perhaps with the Storybrooke sign/logo on it instead of just the series title.
 You can see and order all the goodies, at quite decent prices (at the moment anyway- collectible conscious people will be stocking up!) HERE.


  1. Hi! I have a question, is the book they made (shown above) just a bunch of fairy tales or an exact copy of Henry's book! (Henry's book is the Once Upon a time script version)! Please get back to me! Or email me at!

  2. Is there anywhere one could get a copy of Henry's book?

  3. Is there anyhwere we could get the book, my kids love the show so much and I love that as a mother I can tell my children these much loved stories that I too grew up on and watch the magic in their eyes light up.

  4. I understand everyone has different tastes in art, but honestly I disagree with you about Henry's book, I think the illustrations are fantastic! I love the way they look- like a mixture of watercolor (beauty) and comic book (action) , I find it very appealing.

  5. is their an exact copy of Henry`s book somewhere

  6. Please, does anyone has coppy of this book? I cannot find anywhere :( if you have book please take a photo of each page, I wont put it anywhere I just need it for myself... If someone can do that or has a pdf please send it to:
    I am so desperate... I cannot find :(