Great children's book - the Crowfield Curse, by Pat Walsh

Anything with a vague historical bent

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Christabel
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Location: Herefordshire

Great children's book - the Crowfield Curse, by Pat Walsh

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My eleven-year old brought this home, and I went from reading it over his shoulder to blatantly stealing it and locking myself in the bathroom until I'd finished it. (Luckily for all, I'm a quick reader!) It's a Medieval/fantasy story which is utterly gripping. An orphaned boy lives at a monastery and is collecting wood one day when he finds a creature caught in a trap, a hob, a type of fay, which he takes back to the monstery to heal. Although this one is charming, it's just the first of many strange and dangerous creatures he now becomes aware of haunting the woods around him, sitting alongside Christianity, whilst somewhere deep in the woods a dead angel is buried, which the boy has to help to find, racing against the Dark King of the Unseelie Court who is trying to stop him.

It's written by an archaeologist, so its attention to detail is quite refreshing (although the trap itself sounds more 18th/19th century than Medieval) and she really knows how to plot and to build up suspense. And the Christian church is pretty fairly represented too, which is always a surprise after Philip Pullman's excellent but anti-church books! The sequel is out in spring 2011, but I'll just keep rereading the Curse until then.

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