E. T. A. Hoffmann, Kate Thompson (Foreword by)
The story that inspired the Tchaikovsky ballet is a magical tale of one little girl’s decent into a dream-like world where the diabolical Mouse King rules Full of magic and childish wonder, this coming-of-age novella has something for everyone: beautiful dolls, ferocious battles, and dark undertones. Younger readers will be enchanted by this children's classic, while older readers will be intrigued to discover the background to the famous ballet libretto. It is Christmas Eve and little Marie has tired of her new presents, happily playing with a nutcracker instead. So when her brother Fritz breaks it, she is horrified, tenderly bandaging the little nutcracker with her ribbon and putting him to bed. When the clock strikes midnight, Marie is stunned to see an army of mice advancing, led by a seven-headed Mouse King. Her very own nutcracker leads the dolls and toys against the mouse army and a violent battle ensues. This timeless tale is full of the magic of Christmas, but is a delight to read at any time of the year. Its enduring popularity is testament to its originality and charm.
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