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Publisher's Summary

This Christmas Eve, no creature was stirring, except, maybe, a mouse. At long last, can true love break the Nutcracker’s curse? 

For Clara Stahlbaum, this Christmas means the end of her youth. A daughter of the aristocracy, Clara is expected to give up her dreams of adventures and the extraordinary for more normal days as the wife of a cruel viscount. 

But when magical Uncle Drosselmeyer returns with his wondrous, dancing contraptions and one special gift for Clara, she is beckoned to the land of Winter Dream, where she is thrust into the greatest adventure of her wildest dreams. 

But will she be able to break the Nutcracker's curse? Uncle Drosselmeyer’s apprentice Anton is handsome as he is mysterious. But what is it about him Clara finds so alluring? 

Winter Dream is a phenomenal retelling of The Nutcracker from the eyes of Clara Stahlbaum with all the magic of the Holiday season. If you loved S. Jae-Jones’ Wintersong, you’ll fall in love with this stunning tale of love, war, redemption, and Christmas magic. Listen to it now!

©2017 Machova Productions Inc (P)2019 Machova Productions Inc

What listeners say about Winterdream

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Profile Image for DabOfDarkness
  • DabOfDarkness
  • 02-04-2020

The rodents are awesome!

A clean romantic retelling of The Nutcracker – it’s cute. I liked the evil mice the best. They are certainly worthy foes. There’s sword fights and trading insults, running to and fro, and deceit and trickery. I also liked the fairies and Mother Ginger. Everything in the parallel magical world smells like the best of Christmas – rich coffee, fresh cookies, etc. The author does a really good job of building that magical world known as WinterDream. Even the snowflakes are special.

Meanwhile, Clara must still spend her waking hours in the real world (St. Petersburg, Russia during the winter holidays). Her older sister is engaged and her parents are now considering a good match for her. However, she’s not keen on the man they have chosen. It’s a good thing her uncle has swung into town. He’s brought his assistant (Anton) and they have gifted her with a nutcracker doll to act as her protector. There’s a legendary story that her uncle tells her, about a nutcracker held under a curse.

Much of the time, Clara feels like a 15 year old instead of the 18 year old she is supposed to be. Clara is completely innocent when it comes to romance, so part of that is fitting. Yet there were times when Clara would say something and I couldn’t help but respond with, ‘that’s something a 12 year old would say.’. Clara doesn’t really come off as a young woman, especially with the pink silk dresses, sugary treats, and magical toys. It really does feel more like a kids tale much of the time. But then we have this romance and marriage in the making, so we need Clara to be a little older. Clara has no hobbies, no real ambitions. Her character has a lot of blanks and I wanted a bit more from her.

The pacing is pretty slow. There’s lots of flirtations or avoiding flirtations, glancing eyes, accidental touches, sighing, pittering hearts, etc. There’s only a few scenes with some real action (hence why I liked the rodents so much). Once the villains are defeated, the story goes back to it’s slow pace for the hour long wrap up. For me, I could have used some more action, a quicker pace.

All told, this tale is suitable for all ages being almost no blood, just a few deaths, and just a few kisses. 3.5/5 stars.

The Narration: Anne Marie Lewis was a great pick for Clara. She sounds like a young, innocent lady, just as Clara is written. Lewis also made an excellent angry evil rodent (woohoo!) and an evil witchy woman too. I also liked how she pulled off the Nutcracker’s wooden voice for the majority of the story. There’s a few Russian words and phrases in this story and they were decently done. With a little polishing, they would have been great. The pacing is good and there were no tech issues with the recording. 4.75/5 stars.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Chantal Gadoury. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Ki.mosi
  • Ki.mosi
  • 09-01-2021

As Good a Performance as the Story Allowed

I enjoyed the performer's inflections and her occasional use of a Russian accent to articulate the foriegn words. However, the story felt a little flat to me. The tone of the Nutcracker story envokes a feeling of atmospheric wonder and spontaneity from me. When the author steered the story into a serious romantic drama with court intrigue, it just didn't jive with me. I did appreciate how light-hearted the story was in comparison to the darker YA stories out there though. It made me smile on occasion.

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Profile Image for The Book Junkie Reads . . .
  • The Book Junkie Reads . . .
  • 03-05-2020

another way to look at the nutcracker story

Nutcracker in a different way. I was able to get lost in a world that I knew, but I didn't know. Nutcracker for me has been a tradition for me and the daughters of my heart. We would dress up and go experience a night of fantasy, magic, and dreams of hope, love, adventure.

I very much enjoyed WinterDream. It was fantastic seeing a classic through the eyes of this single character. The world was fanciful. The strength of the lead. The depths of the world created/re-created.

It was just something fanciful,magical, captivating about Anne Marie Lewis' voice. She brought you in and kept you to the end of the audio. The audio was clean, clear, and quality.

*****
I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Chantal Gadoury. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

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Profile Image for 🐺 SCARLET PIMPERNEL 🐺
  • 🐺 SCARLET PIMPERNEL 🐺
  • 24-04-2020

Once upon a Winters dream

A wonderful clean nutcracker retelling. There are several sword fights a burning romance between the nutcracker and Clara, A mystery that will be not be solved until the end. A traitor in the palace and their is a solder that is beheaded and sent as a warning to the nutcracker . Sadly it is Mafrzipans brother Macaron, This retelling is sweet filled with suspense and romance!
Drossemeyer is a cunning man with many secrets. And magic. It has an amazing ending where the Prince and Clara are together in the land of Winterdream. The narrator did a wonderful job with the characters and the voices you can visualize the world of winterdream, and see it all!

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Profile Image for Willow Star Serenity
  • Willow Star Serenity
  • 17-02-2020

Wonderful!

It's Christmas Eve. Clara is enjoying the Christmas Ball that her parents always put together. This one is different because her best friend has gotten engaged. She knows that soon becoming engaged will be expected of her as well. The night is interrupted by a dramatic entrance by her great uncle. He gives her a gift that changes everything. It leads her to a whole new world where everybody is counting on her to break a spell. I have to be honest, I have never actually read The Nutcracker. If it was read to me, I was too young to remember it fully. I did see it every year in theatre as a child. It was and will always remain one of my favorite plays of all time. I loved the story. I loved the rendition. I was ecstatic to find out that this was a retelling! I was curious to see where they would take the story. I could cry with happiness! The beginning starts out almost entirely like the original story. I stress the almost. Clara was a beautiful soul. She was born into aristocracy, but she remained humble and kind. It was beautiful. She was actually a refreshing change to a character I've endured recently, but that's for another place and time. I loved all the characters in the book. Even the ones that were not that great. I mean they are the biggest reason we read these stories. We enjoy the conflict! They bring the conflict! Also, I will never look at a Nutcracker the same way. We have a collection here. This book was narrated by Anne Marie Lewis. She did a very impressive job for the most part. There were times she made some of the people sound a bit robotic and stiff. I think for some of them that was done on purpose. I can't be sure. I especially think she designed the Prince's voice to sound like that as he was a Nutcracker. Either way, I really enjoyed her narration! I feel like I should have had some anxieties going into this story. Especially since it's retelling one of my favorite plays of all time. I didn't. I was more thrilled than anything. I mean I'm constantly seeing Disney Princess retellings. I would love to see retellings from other stories as well! This was told so beautifully. It's hard not to just want to listen to the very end!

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Profile Image for Raquel
  • Raquel
  • 17-02-2020

This is a Winterdream

This is my first audiobook for review so please be gentle with your thoughts at the end.

Ironically, I legit just watched Nutcracker and the Four Realms so the timing for this could not have been funnier.

Audiobooks, to me, are a bit of an inconvenience. Mainly because it requires me to have a generally quiet atmosphere and no distractions so that I can concentrate on what’s going through my ears. Winterdream was the same issue. Even still it was surprisingly enjoyable.

The narrator, Anne Marie Lewis, had a very soothing voice, which was not great for me because my brain kept telling me to sleep, but it was very pleasant otherwise. The language was extremely descriptive, which was weird to hear out loud.

The characters were very well developed. The plot likewise. Honestly, it was one of the best retellings for The Nutcracker ever. I loved it. And I’m really picky about my retellings. This one hit all the marks though.

It had imaginative tangents while still remaining truthful to the original story but not just reiterating the story all over again. Honestly, Winterdream was such a great read. Y’all gotta check it out!

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Profile Image for Carla the Reader
  • Carla the Reader
  • 15-02-2020

Wonderful retelling.

I really enjoyed this story told from Clara's point of view. Narration was well done. Good expression and voices pretty good.

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  • Helen
  • 04-05-2020

Amazing

Amazing audiobook enjoyed from the start to the end
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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Profile Image for R. Simons
  • R. Simons
  • 19-02-2020

So magical

WinterDream is a retelling of The Nutcracker I have not read the original or really know about the story although I know there is a ballet about it, so I have nothing to compare WinterDream to, however, I can say that I absolutely loved it!

The world that was created was done so perfectly I could imagine it so vividly and the story was oh so magical.

I liked the characters, they were described in a way in which you can imagine every detail of them and as the story develops so do they. Clara was definitely a strong female with her own mind, in times (the 1800’s) when it was frowned upon.

Everything flowed perfectly at an even pace and was enjoyable from start to finish.

The narrator of the audiobook brought it all to life, she was exquisite.

WinterDream is the first book I have listened or even read that was written by Chantal Gadoury, I have seen that she has written several retellings so I will definitely be grabbing them at a later date.

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