*I received an ecopy of this book from the publisher. This has not influenced my review.*
This was a nice Nutcracker retelling even though it didn’t blow me away.
It felt like younger YA to me, even though there were some older aspects, like the main character being 18 and worrying about having to marry someone she didn’t like out of duty, as well as a couple scenes of violence, so that threw me off a bit. I also felt like the writing kind of skimmed the surface. The characters and romance didn’t have as much depth as I would’ve liked.
As for what I liked, I believe this was based on the ballet rather than the E.T.A. Hoffman story, and all the retelling elements—the mice, the cursed Nutcracker, the fantasy land—were fun. The main character was one you could root for. She wasn’t one to sit on the sidelines when others needed help.
Overall, this isn’t a bad read, especially if you’re looking for something winter-y or vaguely Christmas-y to enjoy around the holidays or any time of the year!
Anyone who likes young adult and Nutcracker retellings.