Saturday 3 November 2018

Book Review: The Enchanted Sonata by Heather Dixon Wallwork (YA/Fantasy)

Title: The Enchanted Sonata
Author: Heather Dixon Wallwork

Publication Date: 23 October 2018
Pages: 237
eBook - EPUB
ARC via NetGalley

The Enchanted Sonata, a retelling of The Nutcracker ballet with a dash of The Pied Piper, will captivate readers of all ages.

Clara Stahlbaum has her future perfectly planned: marry the handsome pianist, Johann Kahler (ah!), and settle down to a life full of music. But all that changes when Clara receives a mysterious and magical nutcracker.

Whisked away to his world--an enchanted empire of beautiful palaces, fickle fairies, enormous rats, and a prince--Clara must face a magician who uses music as magic...and the future she thought she wanted. 

The Nutcracker is such a Christmas tradition in the UK, so I know the story well. This is the first time I've come across a retelling, and I loved what the author did with it. The blending with The Pied Piper of Hamlin worked well, and I actually stayed up late last night to finish reading, because I only had fifty pages to go and wanted to see how it would end. I enjoyed the way the romance part of the plot didn't overshadow the rest of the action, and there were plenty of thrills and daring adventures along the way. The role of music in the piece was nicely handled, and I was definitely caught up in the magic of it all. There were a few typos and some issues with the formatting of special characters, but I was reading from an ARC, so they may well have been fixed by now. Plus, the tale was so captivating, they didn't bother me unduly. I hear the author plans to continue the story in another book, so I would be interested to see where she takes it next. This is a strong 4.5 stars for me, which for the purposes of rating, I am rounding up to a five.

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