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William crouched behind the fallen oak tree and listened. Close by, someone or something was whimpering in pain.
‘Oh, for pity’s sake . . . my leg.’ Soft groans, a snuffling grunt, and then, ‘My leg! Oh, my leg, mylegmylegmyleg, my leeeeg …’
Cautiously, William got to his feet and peered over the trunk of the tree. He could not see anyone. He stared around the woodland clearing uneasily. Frost rimed the hanks of dead grass and thin branches of hazel and elder bushes. Nothing moved. The whimpering stopped and William had the uncomfortable feeling he was being watched.
‘Who’s there?’ he called. He waited for several
moments, and then called a little louder, ‘Do you need

About the book

Orphan boy William lives at Crowfield Abbey.

Sent into the forest to gather wood, he rescues a fantastical creature from a trap a hob, who shares a dark secret. Somewhere in the forest, behind the abbey is a grave. And buried there is an angel.

When two hooded strangers then arrive and start asking questions, Will is drawn into a terrifying battle of good versus evil.

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Press reviews

“ ... welcome an exciting new talent in children's fantasy ... the writing is good and imagination fresh ... ”


“ ... a real page-turner that belongs in the same dark place as the Spook's Apprentice ...”


“Walsh sweeps readers almost effortlessly into another time and place ...”


Author notes

'This book started with the skeleton of a little nun with a deformed spine, excavated during a dig on the site of a medieval abbey, and an old woman's strange story about an angel she saw in her back garden one snowy December night. In my mind, the nun became a monk and Brother Snail was born. It was when I put the two together, the monk and the angel, and added a young boy and a hob, that the story of The Crowfield Curse came to be.'

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