Once Upon a Day

A Novel

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Nineteen years ago, a famous filmmaker disappeared from Los Angeles, taking his two children, Dorothea and Jimmy, to a desolate corner of New Mexico. There he raised them in complete isolation without television, computer, radio -- not even a newspaper. Now, at twenty-three, Dorothea leaves in search of her missing brother -- and ventures into the outside world for the first time. Her search becomes an odyssey of discovery when Dorothea meets Stephen Spaulding, a cab driver dealing with his own mysterious history. With him as her guide, Dorothea uncovers the truth of her family's past and the terrifying day that changed her father forever. Together, they have a chance to discover that although a heart can be broken by the tragic events of a day, a day can also bring a new chance at love and a deeper understanding of life's infinite possibilities.
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  • Washington Square Press | 
  • 368 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743492782 | 
  • May 2007
List Price $22.99
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Reading Group Guide

Reading Group Guide: Once Upon a Day -- Lisa Tucker
Introduction

Nineteen years ago, a famous man disappeared from Los Angeles, taking his two children to a rocky, desolate corner of New Mexico, where he raised them in complete isolation in a utopian "Sanctuary." Now, Dorothea, the man's 23-year-old daughter, is leaving this place for the first time in search of her missing brother. Dorothea's search will turn into an odyssey of discovery, leading to the shocking truth about her family's past and the terrifying events of the day that drove her father to flee L.A. in a desperate attempt to protect his children from a dangerous world. But Dorothea's journey will also introduce her to a doctor turned cabdriver who has suffered his own losses. Together, they have a chance to make a discovery of a different kind: that though a heart can be broken by the tragic events of a day, a day can also bring a new chance at love and a deeper understanding of life's infinite possibilities.

Group Discussion
1. Charles Keenan is described differently by every character in the book: Lucy says he's a "good person," Janice calls him "controlling," Jimmy pegs him as a "liar," and in Dorothea's eyes he can do no wrong. What do you think of Charles? Is he a sympathetic character?
2. What is the "angel moon" and how does it relate to Dorothea's idea that "life is about what you believe as much as what seems to be see more

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