The Nutcracker and the Mouse King

E.T.A. Hoffman

Marie Stahlbaum loves her nutcracker. It was handcrafted by her eccentric godfather Herr Drosselmeyer. The greatest clockworks maker in the village! When Marie’s idiot brother breaks the nutcracker, Herr Drosselmeyer promises to fix it.

That night Marie has a strange dream about the nutcracker fighting mice. In the morning, no one believes her, no one but Herr Drosselmeyer. He seams to believe her and he tells her all about the nutcraker’s other adventures.

Like most other Americans, my first exposure to this story was the ballet. It was interesting to read the source material. I can’t say that this shed new light on the ballet, but there is much more to the plot and it was interesting to get the whole backstory of the war between the mice and the nutcracker.

It’s well worth the read to help you make this “socially distant Christmas season” just a bit brighter.

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