The Crowfield Curse by Pat Walsh
An angel is buried behind the abbey! It's 1347, and Will, an orphan boy, lives and works as an apprentice of the Crowfield monks. Sent into the forest to gather firewood, he stumbles across a trapped, wounded creature no bigger than a cat.The little goblin shares a terrible secret: Buried deep in the snow behind the monastery is an angel. But, Will wonders, how can an angel die? And what does this angel have to do with the history of Crowfield? When two cloaked strangers show up and start asking questions, Will is drawn into a dangerous world of Old Magic.
Medieval monks, angels, magic, hobgoblins, faerie folks, and a frightened little boy trying to make sense of it all - sign me up.
Walsh weaves a gorgeous tale here, introducing a young adult audience to the hardships of medieval times, whilst also peppering the story with something magical. She speaks subtly about the power of conquering our fears, the stupidity of making assumptions based on appearances, and most wonderfully of all, the utter importance of being a good person.
Although I felt the plot took some time to kick off, once the mysteries began to emerge, I was gripped. Walsh has an engaging way of pacing her plot, and creating the most spine-chilling tension. Things begin to warp and twist in ways you wouldn’t expect; it’s enthralling.
Despite my love for the characters and plot, Walsh’s skill in describing setting was my favourite thing here. The cold abbey, the snow-covered whistling woods, the warm and woody hut - everything was depicted so vividly, and so beautifully that I felt my senses completely overwhelmed.