This is the third of the Witches of Lychford novellas. Lychford is a fictional Cotswolds village where the boundaries between worlds are a bit thin, and need tending. In the first, Witches of Lychford, the three village witches have to stop an out of town supermarket which, if built, will bring worse consequences than just the local shops closing down. It’s a lovely read but not all that special. The second, The Lost Child of Lychford, is much better – really creepy and palpably malevolent stuff involving a ghost child and selfish people who want to get married in the village church on Christmas Day.
So I was really looking forward to this. I even won an advance copy at Bristol Horror Con. That was back in October. Even when a book is a priority it can take me this long to get around to it. Especially if it is a slim volume that easily gets lost in the pile.
In this one, the witch who is the only non-black person in the village is being made to feel uncomfortable in the wake of Brexit and tensions in the village are high. Then one day an older man and a Polish truck driver disappear, the whole village can hear a rave but nobody can find it, and Lizzie the vicar/witch finds a prince of Faerie in her kitchen demanding to know what they’ve done to the boundaries between dimensions. Our heroines have to find out what’s happened and how to stop it before the boundaries between worlds break down.
It’s not long,and I read it in one day. There are some really nice touches in here, like how some realities gave western Christians their ideas of hell, and Lizzie’s fitness tracker ruling her life. One of the characters possibly developing dementia is as horrific as the supernatural stuff.
But there’s something about this that I didn’t love as much as the second book. Maybe because it wasn’t creepy in the same way. There’s certainly suspense, but that’s not the same. I thought the other two were perfect as novellas, this one I thought would have added more if it had been fleshed out into a full-length novel.