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[[quoteright:350:[[WesternAnimation/RockyAndBullwinkle http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/FracturedFairyTales_7073.jpg]]]]

A common device for starting a story, especially fairy tales, is to begin with a book opening. The OpeningNarration goes on as normal, but as it goes on the book opens and we fade to see the story itself being played out. Just as if it came from the book itself. [[BookEnds Usually the story will finish with the book being closed.]]

The TropeMaker here is the DisneyAnimatedCanon, which has used it since the very beginning with ''Disney/SnowWhiteAndTheSevenDwarfs''.

A subtrope of FramingDevice. A sister trope of the one where the book is shown [[IShouldWriteABookAboutThis as it is being written]].

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!!Examples:

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[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* ''LightNovel/{{Kampfer}}'': The very silly episode 12 did this.
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[[folder:Film -- Animated]]
* Disney's ''RobinHood'' does it as well.
* ''{{Shrek}}''
** Subverted by ''Shrek'', which opens with the title character reading a FairyTale... and then ripping out a page as toilet paper. Of course, it's still the same basic type of story anyway.
** Played surprisingly straight in ''Shrek 2.''
** Used again in ''Shrek Forever After'', with multiple pages being ripped off in frustration by the villain, Rumpelstiltskin.
* ''Disney/ChickenLittle'' opens with Buck Cluck deciding how best to begin the story. When the storybook appears, he rejects it as too cliched and moves on. Ironically, the storybook opening was originally going to be used for the movie, but was cut for apparently the same reason.
* ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast'' uses a variation, with stained-glass illustrations on the Beast's castle windows instead of a book.
* ''{{Hoodwinked}}'' uses it not only to begin the film, but also for [[TheRashomon each of the versions of the story as told by the various characters]].
* ''TheAdventuresOfMarkTwain'' begins with a [[PlayingWithATrope variant]] where the contents of an opened storybook spill out and form the world.
* ''[[ComicBook/DCTheNewFrontier Justice League: The New Frontier]]'' starts like this. It's a very dark version, as the storybook is about the monster that's coming to destroy humanity, and the writer finishes by [[RRatedOpening committing suicide]].
* At the very beginning of ''RockADoodle'', just right after we see Chanticleer quitting his job at the farm of waking the Sun up with his crowing and moving to the city after the other farm animals make fun of him after seeing the Sun rise without him one day, the camera pulls back to show that the entire prologue (which is animated) is just a storybook a mother is telling to her young son Edmund (both played by live actors) when the evil owl is introduced for the very first time.
* Another Creator/DonBluth film, ''ThePebbleAndThePenguin'', actually did this with a songbook.
* ''Disney/{{Tangled}}'' was originally supposed to begin in a storybook style, as shown in the Extras on the DVD and also in the "Art Of" book, but was changed to the voiceover they used in the film.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSmurfsAndTheMagicFlute'' starts off with a book page that the narrator reads "once upon a time" until he decides to tell the story without resorting to using a book and just turns the page to the picture of the king's castle that the camera zooms into.
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[[folder:Film -- Live Action]]
* Used in ''{{Enchanted}}'', for both the opening and the closing. Fittingly, the song that ends the movie opens with a line about "storybook endings".
* Oddly used in ''Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail''. It doesn't happen at the beginning or end, but about twenty minutes into the film, with the description of King Arthur's Knights of the Round Table.
* The extended edition of the ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'' DVD menu.
* Disney's ''Film/TwentyThousandLeaguesUnderTheSea'' opens in this style.
* Used in the 1937 Shirley Temple version of ''Heidi'' for the opening credits and first paragraph.
* Used in the Laurel and Hardy version of ''Film/BabesInToyland'', but cut from many prints.
* ''Film/{{Elf}}'' not only has a storybook in its prologue, opening credits, and closing scene, but the menus on the DVD resemble pop-up books.
* ''SnowWhiteAndTheThreeStooges'' opens this way, with the Stooges having fun at points.
* In the extended version of David Lynch's ''Film/{{Dune}}'' one of the first shots after the opening credits is a shot of a copy of the original book by Frank Herbert.
* In ''Film/TheSmurfs2'', Narrator uses a pop-up book to tell the story of how Smurfette came to be at the beginning of the movie.
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[[folder:Literature]]
* Used in a flashback in ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets''.
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[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''{{Monk}}'' uses this for the summation in the last episode of season 3, "Mr. Monk and the Kid"
* ''{{Hustle}}'' does it with the season 4 episode "A Designer's Paradise", although the book doesn't appear until partway into the episode when Albert starts explaining the con in terms of the fairytale "The Emperor's New Clothes".
* An episode of {{Taggart}} '''Gingerbread''' used this. (The story was loosely inspired by Hansel and Gretel).
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[[folder:Theatre]]
* Rather than a conventional overture, the 2013 musical adaptation of ''Theatre/CharlieAndTheChocolateFactory'' has an animated opening sequence that begins this way (the book is a large, purple one with a golden ''W'' on the cover). The narrator begins the show with the lines "This is a story about the most important thing in the world: Chocolate."
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[[folder:Video Games]]
* The old Crystal Dynamics game ''VideoGame/TheHorde'' does this.
* ''VisualNovel/RadicalDreamers'': This SuperNintendo Stellaview game uses it as well. One of the few examples where the story is related through (it is implied) the text of the book itself. ''VideoGame/ChronoCross'' does the same thing, only since it isn't a text-based game, the example isn't quite as unusual.
* ''{{Myst}}'' has a variant; Atrus narrates as the Myst book tumbles through a starry void, before landing in front of you on a...surface. Open the book, touch the picture, and the game begins. Since you're supposed to be in a library as the FramingDevice, one can assume that it was actually falling off a shelf, and the player picks it up to begin.
** The book is actually falling through a starry void, having been dropped into it as explained in the sequel Riven. [[spoiler:If you've played your way through the entire Myst series including Uru, you'll know that the book fell through the Star Fissure, and that the "surface" mentioned above would be the ground in the New Mexico desert. A funny FridgeLogic twist is that, if you've also read the books, you'll know that you could have picked up the Myst book, entered the Crevice nearby, and navigated your way through the caves to D'ni just like Ti'ana did in Myst: The book of Atrus. Then you could hand the book directly to Atrus where he sat, avoiding the entire first game and "winning" without ever having linked anywhere nor visited Myst island.]]
*** [[spoiler: [[FridgeLogic Assuming you could reach K'veer Island, let alone the chamber Atrus was trapped in, and knew to go there in the first place.]]]]
* ''Franchise/SuperMarioBros''
** ''VideoGame/YoshisStory'' features a pop-up storybook. The opening scene presents the first several pages introducing the story. During gameplay, the page turns for each new world. At the end, the storybook reviews all six worlds, the final pages present a happy ending, and the book closes.
** ''VideoGame/PaperMario'': Each game begins with a book opening and the narrator informing the player what "Today's story" is going to be. The game world is made of paper, because its in a book. ''[[VideoGame/PaperMarioStickerStar Sticker Star]]'' also closes the book at the end.
** ''VideoGame/SuperMarioGalaxy2'' shows one of these when starting a new file, and during the credits. At the end, it is revealed that [[spoiler:Rosalina had been narrating it as well as the whole game]]. The end scene also transitions into the Green Star Challenge.
* ''VideoGame/OdinSphere'': The story of is contained within a series of books a young girl is reading one afternoon. Each character's NewGamePlus is simply Alice closing the book at the end and starting again from the beginning.
* ''VideoGame/KirbysEpicYarn'': Every cutscene is narrated like a storybook.
* ''VideoGame/ValkyriaChronicles'' opens this way, and uses the book as a menu interface throughout. At the end, [[spoiler:Ellet, the reporter following Squad 7]] turns out to be the writer.
* ''VideoGame/{{Castlevania 64}}'' starts with the book already open on the a page holding the file select menu. Starting a new game results in your signature appearing on the document, and the pages flipping backwards to reveal it's a copy of [[spoiler:the Necronomicon]].
* ''VideoGame/GrandKnightsHistory''
* ''VideoGame/ChronoCross''
* ''VideoGame/WildArms''
* ''Atelier Marie''
* ''Bram Stoker's Dracula'' for the SNES and Genesis has the player opening a book titled "Vampyres" and turning to a new page between levels. Unfortunately, there are no cutscenes.
* ''Mace: The Dark Age'', Midway's second attempt at a 3D fighter for Arcades and the Nintendo 64.
* ''VideoGame/DarkCloud''
* ''VideoGame/MapleStory''' originally had a login screen which was the first page in a book.
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[[folder:Web Animation]]
* ''WebAnimation/ZeroPunctuation'' did this with the review of ''[[RedFaction Red Faction: Guerrilla]]''.
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[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''[[Disney/TheManyAdventuresOfWinnieThePooh Winnie the Pooh]]'': Disney's short subject versions take this to its logical conclusion by actually taking place in the book itself.
* ''RockyAndBullwinkle'': The "Fractured Fairy Tales" segment used this, but played with it, with the fairy first having difficulty turning the pages due to her small size, then having the book slam shut on her.
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'': The first episode opened with one, telling the "old pony's tale" that sets the events of the series in motion.
* ''{{Chowder}}'': The opening credits, only instead of a storybook, it's a ''cookbook''
* The 30-minute adaptation of ''TheLittleEngineThatCould'' opened and closed this way.
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