Blog Tour (Book Review): Once Upon A Time by SK Hartley

once upon a time ebook-2
::::BOOK INFO::::
Title: Once Upon A Time
Author: S.K. Hartley
Genre: Romantic Comedy | Contemporary Romance
Cover Design: S.K. Hartley

Rating: 4.5 stars

I don’t believe in fairy tales.
I don’t believe in glass slippers.
I don’t believe in Prince-Freaking-Charming.

Cinderella can kiss my ass.

I kiss frogs, sometimes even toads.
I’ve given up on meeting Mr. Right, instead it seems all I meet is Mr. Wrong, Mr. Very-Wrong and even, Mr. Lets-Not-Even-Go-There.

Fairy tales are for morons.

Well, that’s what I thought until Gabriel Black barged through my life, turning everything upside down.
He’s hot, sexy and little rough around the edges.
But, he’s hiding something, something deep. I can feel it, taste it and smell it.

Now I’m left wondering if he’s my Prince Charming or my fairy tale villain.
Will I ride away safely into the night, dreaming of happily ever afters?
Or, will I stumble and fall in ridiculously high heels only meant for women with a death wish?

Once Upon A Time…
I met Gabriel Black.

Grace Review
What girl/woman doesn’t love a good fairy tale?  Just like the show of the same name, this book is loosely based on the popular fairy tale, Cinderella.  (To be clear, while they share the same name, this book is very much its own story and not a direct copy of the show).

You have all the main characters of the fairy tale:

Cinderella – Payton
Prince Charming – Gabriel Black aka Mr. Tall-Dark-and Dangerous, aks TDD
Jaq and Gus, the Mice (work with me here) – Kylie and Quinn
The Wicked Step-Mother – Kate McKenna, aka Payton’s boss
The Wicked Step-Sisters – Clarissa and Katrina Barton, aka Payton’s bitchy co-workers
The Fairy Godmother – Vera Wang ???

Ok, maybe I’m stretching it, but you get the idea.

. . . And they lived happily ever after.
What a crock of shit.

Payton doesn’t believe in love, or happily ever afters.  Prince Charming?  Pfft.  Forget about it.  She is so jaded after her HS supposed Prince Charming tripped and landed his tongue in some other girl’s vagina.  Ok, that’s not really how it happened, but I’m sure the douche would say something like that as an excuse.  With a broken heart, Payton gives up on the idea of love and all that fairy tale nonsense.

Upon receiving news from the evil boss troll, Kate, about a PR account with a new client, Payton goes out to celebrate with her posse – Kylie and Quinn.  We learn two things about Payton on this night.  She’s a nosy-Nancy, and she’s a klutz (I can so relate, to the second part, that is).  Oh yeah, and for the right guy, she’ll spread her legs like Nadia Comăneci, and take names later.  Like much later. . . .you see where this is going, right?

Aside from the on-going commentary from her BFFs, Payton has a hilarious inner-monologue (WARNING: do not Drink and Read this book, you don’t want to spew all over your kindle in a fit of laughter.)

My jaw dropped.
I also think my vagina pretty much howled in delight before detaching itself from my body, making a beeline for the sexy stranger in front of me and dry humping his expensive shoes before running back and reattaching itself.  Wet and ready like a damn cheerleader.

Yeah, don’t even try to visualize that.

It should come as no surprise that her one-night romp with a sexy stranger is not the last she sees of him.  And he clearly didn’t have his fill of her that night.

“Are you going to speak or do I have to spank you to get your voice to work?”
I nodded.
Wait.  What?
“No!” I yelped.

While Payton frustrated me at times with her doubts that happily ever after would be in the cards for her, I liked how she didn’t bow down to Gabriel’s advances, and made him work for it.  I can also appreciate how she didn’t want lavish gifts, when she so easily could have used him for his money.  (Side note: with this book releasing the same week as Easy Virtue, you couldn’t find two more different female characters, other than both don’t believe in love).

“Prince Charming doesn’t exist, Payton,” he whispered against my neck. “But I do.”

While the ending of this book is sure to put a smile on your face, it felt a bit rushed, with everything falling into place a bit too easily.  But, it is a fairy tale after all, so I’ll give it a pass.

This is a perfect book to read when you feel overloaded with the angst and emotionally draining romance books.  It’s light, fun, fresh and sexy.  Can’t beat that with a stick!

– Grace

*An ARC was received for an honest review.

once teaser



S.K. Hartley is a wife and mother to an oil soaked husband and a tomato sauce covered son by day, by night an International Bestselling Author whose first novel, Finding You, quickly shot up the charts in fall 2013, winning blog awards for the tear inducing writing and breath catching ending.

Since releasing her first novel, she then went on to release two more books in the series, Finding Me & Finding Us, proving that New Adult is vastly popular among readers and writers a like.

Located in the not so sunny North West of England, UK, S.K. Hartley deals with daily battles against Microsoft Office Word translations. Working as a British author who writes in American English is a challenge that’s both frustrating and fulfilling.

When she’s not doing all the above, S.K. Hartley spends the rest of her time interacting with her readers on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and also via her newsletter.


Author Links:
Goodreads Author Page :
Amazon Author Page :

Goodreads (TBR):
OUAT Book Trailer:

Buy Links:
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Amazon UK:

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