Sunday, March 06, 2011

March British Book Challenge 2011: The Crowfield Curse

Title: The Crowfield Curse
Author: Pat Walsh
Published: Chicken House, May, 2010

Synopsis: Strange things are happening around Crowfield, first William finds an injured hob and discovers he has the sight, then two mysterious men arrive and take lodging at the abbey. What is the meaning of this? Coincidence? Or the beginning of an unworldly mystery?

Star parts: The first two chapters directly pulled you into the action and the life of the abbey. The different characters in the book were well described and the reader gets a good sense of them. The language was beautiful and the premise of the story is also really interesting.

Black clouds: I found the pace of the book too slow. There was too much time spent on details of everyday life, which while they enabled us to see how difficult William's life was, didn't add to the action. Also, where there could have been action, the reader was constantly told how the characters felt. I felt that the book leant towards narrative, rather than a balanced mix of narrative, action and dialogue.

Do I recommend it: No. I thought twice about even reviewing the book and decided that I would, as in the end this is my opinion and yours might wildly differ.

To read more great reviews check out The Bookette here and the March BBC challenge here.


Nicky Schmidt (Absolute Vanilla) said...

aw, I loved the Crowfield Curse - didn't have a problem with the pace, as I thought it suited the period and what Pat was trying to achieve - of course, I'm biased, I read very early drafts of the novel!

Michele Helene (Verilion) said...

I wondered if that was what she was trying to do and I did love the story Nicky, I thought it was a fabulous idea, but really, really too slow. If it hadn't been for this challenge I would have quit before the end. I'm now reading Stoneheart which in contrast has a breakneck pace!

Nicky Schmidt (Absolute Vanilla) said...

I guess it comes down to personal preference - I can't cope with novels that travel at breakneck speed for me the slower pace makes for something quite magical. Would be interested to hear examples of novels that work for you pace-wise?

Michele Helene (Verilion) said...

Oh lordy, there's the million dollar question! I go on and on about pace, but I don't think I preference. For instance I love Anthony Horowitz, Eoin Colfer, Garth Nix, David Almond is my personal god, and Cornelia Flunke my personal goddess and then there's a million and one people in between. Each writer has a different pace, from break neck (the first two) to the quite slow (the deities), but whatever the pace it's so balanced. If you finish a chapter and have to keep reading to find out what happens next, they give it to the reader in the next chapter. They don't miss a beat. Do you know what I mean?


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