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Once Upon a Marigold (Upon a Marigold, #1)
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Once Upon a Marigold

(Upon a Marigold #1)

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  22,452 ratings  ·  1,517 reviews
Christian is gaga for Princess Marigold. But he's just a commoner, and no match for royalty. Heck, he lives in a cave with a troll! And now he's discovered another reason to put his love-soggy heart on ice: Queen Olympia is scheming to take over the kingdom--and she'll bump off her own daughter to do it. Can Christian foil her diabolical plans?
Paperback, 271 pages
Published June 1st 2004 by Harcourt, Inc. (first published October 1st 2002)
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Louie This is one of my favorite books. I read this recently and would definitely read it again. This is an amazingly crafted fairy tale themed book that I…moreThis is one of my favorite books. I read this recently and would definitely read it again. This is an amazingly crafted fairy tale themed book that I would definitely buy.(less)

Community Reviews

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3.99  · 
Rating details
 ·  22,452 ratings  ·  1,517 reviews

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Aug 28, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the cutest book in the entire world. You kind of just want to hug it and squeeze it and call it George, because it's just that damned cute.

The subtitle is "part comedy, part love story, part everything-but-the-kitchen sink," and that's pretty accurate. I got a bit of a Princess Bride type of vibe from it. I just kept giggling throughout - totally mixed up fairy tale, just slightly surreal and a bit mocking. So much fun!

(Okay, there were some parts where the author was clearly trying too
Sara ♥

This book was awesome! And, okay, I DO happen to have a thing for cheesy young-adult romance fairy-tales, but still, it was really clever and totally adorable! And CLEAN. I wouldn't hesitate to read this book to an 8-year-old (or younger, if they were interested). It was predictable (I guessed who Christian was in the first chapter, but whatever... the goal of the book wasn't to be cryptic), but it was just so sweet and innocent and SO funny!

Okay, so it's about this 6-year-old b
Nov 10, 2007 rated it liked it
I totally judged a book by its cover on this one. The font the words are printed in reminded me of the font from Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (easy read, I knew), and it proclaimed itself to be “part comedy, part love story, part everything-but-the-kitchen-sink; happily-ever-after turned upside down, inside out, and completely over the top!” Well, I don’t know about all that, but it was an entertaining read — a fairy tale with a modern, fun, whimsical feel to it.

I must admit I liked the fir
Sep 25, 2016 rated it liked it
This was a sweet pleasant fairytale-like romance , but it was predictable and had some of the most famous cliches in fairytales , with some originality though.
The narration was fantastic !!
Nov 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Absolutely delightful even the second time around. I am glad to have a chance to re-read the first two, and to finally read the third.

EtA: I like how this one is from the pov of the male character.

Btw, I guess I really do love this author. I also own her Love Among the Walnuts (which I found at a thrift store, sans jacket, and did not realize as YA because it read as adult) and am going to reread that before releasing it.
Aug 12, 2010 rated it liked it
My name is Christian- I don’t know what my last name is, because when I was five years old, I decided I’d had enough with boring lessons about how to sip tea properly and wearing silly uncomfortable clothes all day. So I ran away- and that’s how I met Ed. Ed’s my dad. He found me hiding in the woods and tried to take me back to my parents, but I decided I liked Ed way more than them, so I tricked him into adopting me. Oh, yeah, Ed’s also a troll, and he pretends to be all grumpy and troll like m ...more
May 30, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Wonderful and orginal fairy tale! And one that is not like any other fariy tale out there.


This is my second read. It's just one of those books that you can't seem to put down, but not the kind that you can't stop thinking about. Don't get me wrong, it's a wonderful book.'s just a good story. It's not something you can't get off your mind.

There were some cheesy parts, but that's part of the charm of the book. It's silly, crazy, touching and cheesy. That's basically the novel in a n
Feb 02, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: pre-teen girls
This book is just as cute as a pile of puppies and kittens licking each other's ears on a glittery pink blanket. Surrounded by cupcakes.

That is to say, there's a certain audience for this kind of thing and everyone else should keep their cute-sickness bags handy. (I am saying this as a fan of Cute Overload with a very high tolerance for cuteness.)

It's the light and fluffy side of a fairy tale without the darkness.

But it isn't bad. Ed and Christian are relatively enlightened buddies. While Princ
Jan 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Rating: 4.5
I really enjoyed this book. I was a light, fun, fairytale read reminiscent of Ella Enchanted, The Princess Bride, Disney Princess Movies, and Barbie Princess Movies. A Mishmash of a bunch of storybook tropes and cliches, creating a wonderfully odd, but familiar, world. There weren’t any swear words, but some cartoonish violence and a few kisses occur.

I was a little nervous to read this because I wasn’t sure on the content. Not one of my friends of here reviewed it, so I didn’t know w
Mar 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
What do you get when you mix an evil mother, a not so typical princess, a grumpy troll and a lost boy? You get “everything but the kitchen sink”. Once upon a Marigold is a book that follows a young boy falling in love with a princess across the river who exchanges little notes with him using p-mail (pigeon mail) creating a beautiful distant relationship. That’s when Christian decides it’s time for him to pursue his dreams and decides to leave his father troll, who has raised him since he found C ...more
Aug 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Ok. So I decided to read up on some of my favorite books ever just to remember how much I really do love them. And it also reminded me how sad some of the science fiction stuff can be compared to this lovely and just plain cute fantasy! I freaking love this book! It's just adorable. It makes me happy and joyous and I must say, a bit hyper. :) This is one of those books that you just have to read when you're having a dumper day. And I was kinda having one when I read it all yesterday when I was s ...more
Jan 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was actually the second time I had read this book and I always love it. It is a good story and not some heavy book that makes you think all deep. It is just a good book with trolls and princess and an even mother who wants to take over the kingdom. It is a good book for anyone who is ready to get out of reading super serious books. It's a great book and I do recommend it.
Stacy Lynn
Sep 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Once Upon a Marigold" is a romantic comedy book. In the story, a commoner who lives in a cave with a troll and two dogs falls in love with the youngest princess of their kingdom. They start off as best friends through "p-mail" (basically handwritten letters sent by pigeons), but soon they meet at one point in the book and become something more. This is a very cheesy book filled with corny jokes, so I think only a few section of readers would enjoy reading this and apparently I'm a part of that ...more
Barbara ★
This is super cute and sweet as hell. I loved Christian, Marigold, Ed and the dogs...all five of them.

I particularly liked Ed because he reminded me of Eve Dallas (In Death series) with all his mixed cliches. Made me smile every time.

"He'd buttered his bread, and now he'd have to lie in it."
"What's sauce for the goose, is sauce for the eager beaver."
"You just have to take the bear by the horns."

I'm looking forward to Twice Upon A Marigold.
Denae Christine
Reader thoughts: I almost put the book down on page two. So glad I didn't! (It starts with an old man walking through the woods. Not interesting, until you find out he's a troll.)

The book's climax reminded me of Ella Enchanted. There was a curse to break, a step-mother to face, a prince to marry, people shouting, and a dog-powered flying machine (okay, not exactly like Ella Enchanted). Fun though, and lots happening at once.

The relationship between Christian and his foster father was well-don
Sep 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Tween/Early Teens & Parents
Recommended to Sherylcarlin by: Once Upon A Time
This is a great book for tweens and early teens. It is a clever story that communicates that true love is based on friendship, partnership, and being someone's "bulwark." My daughter, (11) and I have truly enjoyed reading it together and she cannot wait to start the next in the series, "Twice Upon A Marigold"
Oct 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is fantasy in a fairy tale kind of way for kids and I just have to say that this was such a cute little story. I enjoyed this one....and the ending....oh my. What a perfect set up for the next one. This is one book that I would read to my own kids if they were still little, especially my girls, but I think my boys would have thought it was kind of cool too.
Mar 12, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My younger brothers were complaining about listening to a "princess girly-girl book," but a few magic spells later, they said that they loved it.
Aug 17, 2017 rated it liked it
I'm a sucker for a good romance. Really, I'm weak when it comes to romantic gestures.

The book began with Christian, a six-year-old, that ran away from home being found in the forest by a troll, Ed. The humor of the story, the ridiculousness of it, began here. From the beginning the dialogue contained a light, airy, and modern quality that didn't fit with the time period common with princes and princess. The anachronistic air reminded me of The Princess Bride. Since it's one of my favorite roman
So after The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo which almost killed my brain (in a good way, of course) I decided to pick up this book, because I love fairy-tale like stories. This book did a good job at making me feel alive again.
As usual, we have a commoner handsome but nice boy, an ill king, a princess and a scheming, evil queen in this book too. There were lots of cliches, but this book was so innocent and cute, I couldn't complain at all. The romance made me warm, and the foster family of Christi
Shae Bright
Apr 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
We read a chapter of this nightly before bed. My daughter really liked it and it was complex writing for the average 9 year old I think. I have to admit, at bedtime I am the one reading out loud generally and she stopped me quite a few times to find out what a word meant, which interrupted my flow and frustrated me at times, but I hid that pretty well and can feel good about all the new words that we added to her vocabulary ;) We have the second book on hold at the library right now.
Apr 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a fun, interesting read. You will enjoy this marvelous adventure.
Issi Marsh
Feb 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
this is the book that got me hooked on reading over 12 years ago. ❤ ...more
Ellen B
Apr 16, 2017 rated it liked it
A cute little story that made me think of Shrek (minus the third-grade humor) or Tangled. :)
Michelle Bizzell
Jul 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This is one of those books that when I am really down, I read as a pick me up. I've read it so many times and I love it so much. The most adorable.
May 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
I was in desperate need of a light, fluffy read when my sister pushed Once Upon a Marigold into my hands.

It's pretty much exactly the feel-good story I needed - fun, cute, happy and just a bit silly. Really enjoyed it!
Aug 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adolescenti, bambini
Similar feel to The Ordinary Princess by M.M. Kaye. Delightful! I can't wait to have children just so I can read them this book.
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
i enjoyed it .. it was like المكتبه الخضراء
May 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a silly but fun read. Parts of it were a little more intense than I thought would be found in a book that seemed very light-hearted. I loved reading about rainbow crystal caves, p-mail, and dogs that could harmonize. The author is very creative.
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Around the Year i...: Once Upon a Marigold, by Jean Ferris 1 18 Jan 29, 2016 06:58PM  
  • No Place for Magic
  • Goose Chase
  • For Biddle's Sake (The Princess Tales, #5)
  • The Runaway Princess
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7)
  • Bella at Midnight
  • If the Shoe Fits (The Princess School, #1)
  • The Ugly Princess and the Wise Fool
  • The Rumpelstiltskin Problem
  • Into the Wild
This author is not afraid to tackle difficult subjects: living with a deaf parent (Of Sound Mind), facing the consequences of a criminal act (Bad), or questioning one's sexuality (Eight Seconds). But Jean Ferris is also adept at writing comedy, historical fiction, and romance. What's most interesting is that she didn't publish her first novel until she was in her mid-40s. Yet she's never forgotten ...more

Other books in the series

Upon a Marigold (3 books)
  • Twice Upon a Marigold (Upon a Marigold, #2)
  • Thrice Upon a Marigold (Upon a Marigold, #3)
“Secrets have a way of making themselves felt, even before you know there's a secret.” 62 likes
“That cup of tea is definately not down your alley” 54 likes
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