Once Upon a Wish

I usually don’t blog on Saturdays, but I do like to blog on release days and so: Today is the release day for Lutheran author Celena Janton and her book, Once Upon a Wish: A Fairy Tale Retelling.

Here’s what Amazon has to say about Once Upon a Wish:

From Amazon best-selling author, Celena Janton, comes a fairy tale retelling unlike any you have read before…

There was, once upon a time, a good and powerful Queen who had three sons.

Now, this Queen was a lover of all manner of fine trees, but there was one for which she had the fondest affection, of which only her sons could gather an apple and only one apple, at that, to present to the woman he wished to marry.

One year when the harvest came, rich and plentiful, the apples on the tree shone redder than they had ever done before. Flecked with shimmers of gold, the fruits were a delight to the eye. It happened that early one morning, the youngest prince ventured into the garden. Creative and confident, handsome and charming, full of hopes and dreams, and of a marriageable age, the prince gazed at the tree, wondering who and what the future held for him. As he gazed, he suddenly felt the presence of someone behind him. Turning, he saw the most beautiful woman he had ever beheld.

As captivating as any painting of a goddess he had ever seen, something dangerous sparkled in her eyes. Unfraid of danger as he was, this prince yet shivered, though the day was warm. The enchantress tilted her head in a glance toward the nearest apple hanging above them.

“Pick that for me,” she commanded in a voice like sultry honey.

The prince slowly reached a hand up, grazing the apple’s skin with his fingertips, meeting her eyes all the while.

He narrowed his gaze and, bringing his hand back down to his side, he said one word which would change the course of his life forever, and hers as well.


Turning his back on the enchantress, the prince walked away from her, leaving her to stare after him. He didn’t see the way she clenched her hands at her sides, the way her face reddened in a silent rage. He could not have heard the vow she made to herself, nor the anger than fueled her passion.

From that day on, she would wait for the right opportunity to repay the prince for the bitterness she had allowed him to plant in her heart that day. She would water the bitterness until it was rooted and, once rooted, it wrapped around her heart like overgrown ivy.

The prince waited, as well.
He waited… for me.

I heard her wishing upon a star. I shouldn’t have been there.

She had come to us that night, a beggar woman. Her hands dirty, her face weary, she came in search of bread and a good night’s sleep. My mother asked me to share my bed, and being the dutiful daughter I was, I didn’t argue.

Sleep eluded me that night as I lay un-moving, lest her dirty feet touch me or lice from her hair jump into mine. When I heard her rise in the middle of the night, I followed.

As I watched her gaze up at the sky to make a wish upon a falling star, I could never have imagined that my life was about to change forever. With her cackling voice, she wished for a handsome prince to come and find her.

Her words carried across to me on the edge of the wind.

And I laughed.

When my laughter fell upon her ears, she turned to meet my eyes.

The very stars from the heavens seemed to fall and glow around her until she was no longer a beggar woman but a beautiful enchantress, more lovely than any painting of a goddess I had ever seen.

“You laugh today, Sarina,” she said to me, “and yet soon, your mockery will turn to fulfillment even as your joy turns to weeping.”

She was gone as quickly as her last word, and I stood wondering if she had left me with a blessing or a curse.

I still wonder.

Since that night, I am a different person. I wish upon candles and dandelion seeds and falling stars. I believe in fairy tale love, the truly madly deeply kind.

And I find it.

Again and again.

Endlessly. Painfully. Hopefully.


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