Book Review | Midnight in Everwood by M.A. Kuzniar

⭐⭐⭐⭐✨(4.5/5)

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Received via NetGalley.

Marietta loves to dance, but her parents have other ideas for their daughter. They want Marietta to marry well and join society, and ballet is not a part of that plan. When Dr Drosselmeier, mysterious toymaker, moves to town, Marietta’s parents begin to see her future mapping itself out. However, perhaps Dr Drosselmeier brings a darker magic than anyone has realised. On Christmas Eve, Marietta’s last dance is drawing close, and Dr Drosselmeier seems to be drawing even closer, but Marietta finds herself in magical Everwood…will she make it home? And what will her future hold?

I was looking forward to this novel, and the magic of Midnight in Everwood did not disappoint. Kuzniar creates a novel full of enchantment and intigue.

The setting of Everwood is rich, magical and Kuzniar transports you right there. I could see it all vividly in my mind, from the snowy woods to the sugary architecture.

Although the novel is set in the early 20th century, the feminism of the plot brings a more modern element and highlights the class and gender expectations Marietta and other character’s face.

The characters are also well-crafted, many of them hiding secrets and more complex than they first appear.

I paritcularly enjoyed Marietta’s character arc. When she first arrives in Everwood, Marietta wants to push back against constraints, perhaps prove what she is capable of, but sometimes this can lead to trouble. She learns many lessons during her time in Everwood, especially about standing up for yourself and fighting for what you believe in. These lessons are learned alongside, and thanks to, the friends that Marietta meets in Everwood. The female friendships stood out particularly, and I enjoyed seeing Marietta forming these bonds, learning from and supporting other woman.

If you’re looking for a darkly magic, wintery tale, then this retelling of the Nutcracker needs to be on your tbr.

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