Midnight in Everwood is an evocative literary adaptation of The Nutcracker, perfect for fans of Robert Dinsdale’s The Toymakers and Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus.
In Nottingham 1906, Marietta Stelle longs to be a ballerina but as Christmas draws nearer, her dancing days are numbered. At the wishes of her family, she is obligated to marry and take up her place in society in the New Year. When a mysterious toymaker, Dr Drosselmeier, purchases a neighbouring townhouse, it heralds the arrival of magic and wonder in her life. Although Drosselmeier’s magic is darker than Marietta could have imagined.
When he constructs an elaborate theatrical set for her final ballet performance, Marietta discovers it carries a magic all of its own. As the clock chimes midnight, Marietta finds herself walking through a land of snow-topped fir trees leading to a frozen sugar palace silent with secrets, and must find a way to return home. In the darkness of night, magic awaits and you will never forget what you find here…
Midnight in Everwood is M.A. Kuzniar’s debut novel. It’s a story which the Nottingham resident and ballet lover had long dreamt of writing. Her passion for the beloved Christmas-time ballet is abundantly clear in this novel — it glimmers with all the magic and wonder that one would expect from a stunning stage production.
Kuzniar based Midnight in Everwood and its characters on different adaptations of The Nutcracker. She includes snippets from Alexandre Dumas’ The Story of a Nutcracker, and E.T.A. Hoffman’s The Nutcracker, showing how this magical tale of a young girl, a manipulative toymaker and a journey into another dimension has endured for over a century. Kuzniar’s retelling of the story takes place in Nottingham at the beginning of the 20th century, a time when Marietta was expected to marry young rather than pursue her dreams of becoming a professional ballerina. The fantastical elements loom large, as Marietta is sucked through a grandfather clock into the magical, confectionary world of Everwood. What awaits on the other side is remarkable, yet threatening — adding a layer of suspense to this fantasy number.
Midnight in Everwood is an impressive debut historical and fantasy novel. Its evocation of the mysterious and sugary world of The Nutcracker is sure to appeal to lovers of the ballet and magical storytelling, especially around Christmas time.