The clock chimes midnight, a curse breaks, and a girl meets a prince . . . but what follows is not all sweetness and sugarplums.
New York City, 1899. Clara Stole, the mayor’s ever-proper daughter, leads a double life. Since her mother’s murder, she has secretly trained in self-defense with the mysterious Drosselmeyer.
Then, on Christmas Eve, disaster strikes.
Her home is destroyed, her father abducted–by beings distinctly nothuman. To find him, Clara journeys to the war-ravaged land of Cane. Her only companion is the dethroned prince Nicholas, bound by a wicked curse. If they’re to survive, Clara has no choice but to trust him, but his haunted eyes burn with secrets–and a need she can’t define. With the dangerous, seductive faery queen Anise hunting them, Clara soon realizes she won’t leave Cane unscathed–if she leaves at all.
Inspired by The Nutcracker, Winterspell is a dark, timeless fairy tale about love and war, longing and loneliness, and a girl who must learn to live without fear.
Source: Listed as a “book we can’t wait for” at FicFare and a few other places …
I love the opening of this review. So often the bold, italicized text at the top of a description doesn’t do anything for me, but this time it effectively sets the scene and the mood of the rest of the description (presumably the novel too, but as I haven’t read it, I can’t speak to that).
With the next paragraph, we know pretty much everything we could want to know about the main character, and by now I already have a decent feel for the author’s narrative style. The relatively short sentences make for an easy skim if that’s all I’m doing, but with a deeper read I get a lot of information. First, I have confirmation that we are in fact dealing with something at least related to The Nutcracker, but we also have a few key differences pointed out to inform us that it’s not a straight retelling (mother’s murder, self-defense training, etc).
We’re then told about everything that goes wrong. I can’t decide if this gives too much away or not without reading the book first, but it certainly does an effective job of making me want to read the book.
Overall, an excellent description!