This sequel to Pat Walsh’s The Crowfield Curse returns us to Crowfield barely three months later, and if orphan Will thought that evil had been vanquished from his adopted home, he soon has to wake up and smell the caudle. A stomach-turning encounter with the Dark King in disguise shows that danger lurks once more in those parts. The Abbey building has begun mysteriously to crumble, and as the monks try desperately to repair the damage, Will finds a truly terrifying object buried under the floor of a side chapel that could spell the end of Crowfield for ever.
Once again Pat Walsh brings the cloistered world of Crowfield vividly to life and we learn more absorbing snippets about medieval life along the way. Will is an engaging hero, and the concept of ancient pagan spirits which lie trapped and bent on revenge beneath the foundations of the Christian abbey is a compelling one. There’s even a nice nod to Dan Brown in the feverish speculation about the mysterious bowl that Will unearths. If it were a little shorter, The Crowfield Demon would better sustain a sense of real peril. The demon itself is somehow not as frightening as it might be, such that I began to wonder if it had a genuine grievance about a great big abbey being built without planning permission, smack on top of its spiritual home. But there’s still plenty to enjoy here. And I love now knowing what caudle is.