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Nutcracker and Mouse King

E. T. A. Hoffmann

Book Overview: 

The original story of the Nutcracker, weird and wonderful by one of the masters of horror and weirdness.

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Community Reviews

If the name "Nutcracker" only conjures up visions of graceful ballerinas and an ethereal Sugar Plum Fairy, then Hoffman's original tale can be rather shocking in its violence (mostly psychological, but physical as well) and undercurrents of sadism. And while the narrative is quite different than the

"How does a wooden nutcracker, decorated as an old-fashioned soldier, manage to conquer the world of ballet during Christmastime in America and many other countries every year?" (- Introduction by Jack Zipes)


The Nutcracker's strange tale begins at its conception, in a way. Intend

The Nutcracker and the Mouse King


The Nutcracker and the Mouse King was written by the Prussian writer E.T.A Hoffman and was published in 1816. The book starts out on Christmas Eve when a little girl and her brother Fritz are examining their Christmas presents. Their Godfather Drosselmeir makes

Perfect for that time of the year!!!!

Nutcracker & Mouse King: 4.5 stars. Excellent and surreal, if confusing and weirdly parsed in places.

Tale of the Nutcracker: 4 stars. An easier to read translation/retelling of Hoffman's story. Better for quick reading.

The introduction provided extensive backstory on Hoffman's life and how he came t

Though I didn't love either version of the Nutcracker story, it was still neat to see the inspiration for the beloved Christmas ballet. I definitely preferred the Dumas retelling of the original Hoffman tale, largely because I connected with the writing style and descriptions much more readily, but

This is the marvellously strange and creative novella that Tchaikovsky's ballet is based on. And it is just as surreal as the ballet - but ballets are surreal by nature, while books needn't be. Like a darker, Continental forerunner to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. It makes zero sense, but is mor

I only listened to the Duma's version, but couldn't find it in GR, so I am logging it here.

I found it very boring, specially being addressed to kids. I'd rather enjoy Tchaikovsky's ballet.

Loved these two tellings of The Nutcracker! I know I will be reading this again (every year?!) because, despite being a simple tale, it's full of wonderful imagery and funny lines (Dumas especially brought delightful humor to the narrative).

Till now, my favorite story version of The Nutcracker ball

A charming tale that I was only familiar with because of seeing the ballet a few years back. I'm glad I finally read the book even though the second half was odd and random. Lol

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