“A glittering rush of sugar-sweet enchantment laced with sparkling prose and bewitching storytelling. Beware of entering this magnificent world; Everwood will dazzle and seduce you and then steal you away.”


Midnight in Everwood is M.A. Kuzniar’s enchanting, twisted and beguiling début novel. A re-telling of E.T.A. Hoffmann’s The Nutcracker, this historical romance novel spins a chilling and magical fairy tale with familiar notes and enthralling new depths.

Set in Nottingham in 1906, Mariette Stelle dreams of continuing her dancing and being a ballerina but as Christmas and the New Year approach, her dancing days are set to end with an ultimatum from her parents. Marietta must get married and take up her proper place in society.

Marietta’s life takes a strange turn, however, when a mysterious toymaker, Dr Drosselmeier, moves into the neighbouring townhouse, heralding the arrival of magic, wonder, and mystery in Marietta’s life.

Drosselmeier builds for Marietta an elaborate set for her final ballet performance that is due to take place on Christmas Day. Before she can dance on the stage though, she discovers that it holds a magic of its own. As the grandfather clock strikes midnight, Marietta is transported to the frozen, candy land of Everwood.

In this intriguing new world, Marietta discovers secrets hidden within the depths of the frozen sugar palace. The ballerina needs to find her way home before Everwood captures her in its bewitching grip forever.

M.A. Kuzniar’s writing is beautiful and vivid, drawing the reader right into the heart of Everwood with Marietta. In a story that begins in quaint delight and slowly descends into darkness – as winter wonderlands turn to ice-cold nightmares – the author still manages to perfectly weave alluring and enchantingly sweet magical moments into every chapter.

A perfect, wintery read, M.A. Kuzniar’s Midnight in Everwood is an exquisitely written tale of enchantment and magic from both darkness and lightness that will summon readers into its world right to the very end.

An action-packed and gripping tale, Midnight in Everwood is led by strong female characters as Marietta and her new friends, Dellara and Pirlipata, plot an escape from the dark, magical bonds that hold them within the palace. Heart-warming threads of romance and friendship are woven through the dark and chilling heart of this marvellous novel, as the author holds the reader’s delicate heart of ice within her crushing grip.

Reviewed by:

Catherine Muxworthy, Booksbirdblog

Added 17th Febraury 2022

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Catherine Muxworthy