Episode 28: The Nutcracker King: YA Horror/Fantasy Critique

Leslie & Alyssa critique the opening chapters of The Nutcracker King, a novella by Eustacia Tan. They discuss genre, public domain characters, conflict, and deepening characterization. The novella is a sequel to the beloved classic The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by ETA Hoffman.



Listen Now

Show Notes

When we refer to fantasy in the context of literature we are referring to stories that have certain definable elements that make the story unreal. There are many such elements. They vary from mythical beasts roaming an imagined world to natural settings in which animals take on human characteristics. There are recognizable conventions of fantasy, such as toys coming to life, tiny humans, articulate animals, imaginary worlds, magical powers, and time-warp tales. A story needs to possess only one of these features in order to be classified as fantasy. However, some great stories use a combination of fantasy elements. I tell my students simply this: a fantasy is any story in which at least one element cannot be found in our human world.
— Karlene McGowen

A good article: Conflicts and Characters

And another: Conflict--Beyond Arguments and Fist Fights

Get the full, edited version of The Nutcracker King here.


inline Critique