Once Upon a Toad by Heather Vogel Frederick

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A girl gets into a mouthful of trouble in this “toadally” fractured fairy tale, from the author of the Mother-Daughter Book Club series.

Once upon a time, Cat Starr lived with her astronaut mom in Houston. But when her mother gets sent on a long-term mission, Cat has to move to a faraway land—her dad’s house, halfway across the country—and share a room with her real-life evil stepsister, Olivia. Just when Cat can’t take it anymore, Great Aunt Abyssinia comes to the rescue. And things go from bad to cursed.

The next morning, Cat opens her mouth and a toad hops out! What’s more, when Olivia speaks, diamonds and flowers appear. How unfair is that? Before you can say "happily ever after," the girls are on the run from jewel thieves and a government agency. Can Cat save the day—and get rid of all those toads?

This is an enchanting fractured fairy tale from acclaimed Mother-Daughter Book Club author Heather Vogel Frederick.

About Heather Vogel Frederick

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Heather Vogel Frederick is the author of the popular Mother-Daughter Book Club series, as well as the highly acclaimed The Voyage of Patience Goodspeed, The Education of Patience Goodspeed, and the Spy Mice series. She resides with her family in Portland, Oregon. Visit her at HeatherVogelFrederick.com.
Published April 10, 2012 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. 274 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Once Upon a Toad

Kirkus Reviews

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There’s a certain attractive ick factor about a girl who spews out toads every time she speaks, but is it enough to sustain a novel?

Apr 17 2012 | Read Full Review of Once Upon a Toad

Publishers Weekly

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When the girls start spitting toads and diamonds, Cat discovers that it’s the work of her eccentric Great-Aunt Abyssinia, who is actually an “occupationally challenged fairy godmother.” The girls’ talents attract media attention, through which Frederick offers gentle commentary on the dar...

Feb 27 2012 | Read Full Review of Once Upon a Toad

Youth Services Book Review

In this version, thanks to Great Aunt Abyssinia, Cat Starr’s somewhat malfunctioning fairy godmother, Cat, the narrator, is the one stuck with producing toads when she speaks while stepsister Olivia produces flowers and rare gems.

Aug 30 2012 | Read Full Review of Once Upon a Toad

Gr 4–6—Cat Starr is a 12-year-old bassoon player from Houston, TX, whose mother is an astronaut on the International Space Station. Sent to live with her father in Oregon while her mother is in space, Cat struggles to get along with stepsister Olivia and her friends. When her great-aunt Abyssinia...

Aug 01 2016 | Read Full Review of Once Upon a Toad

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