Cover Image: The Midnight Swan

The Midnight Swan

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Member Reviews

A perfect (potentially final) book for this series, we finally find out the origins of the Clockwork Crow and how to make him human again. Meanwhile, Seren's found family have started asking her strange questions about any other family members she has and she's scared of being sent back to the orphanage.

As an adult, it was easy for me to predict what would happen next but that never affected my enjoyment of the story. This third book brings the Fair Family back into Seren's life - and Seren back into their world, searching for the lost egg of the Midnight Swan, fulfilling a promise that the Clockwork Crow made many years ago.

I loved the ending of this story, and it felt final, wrapping all the loose ends up and letting me know that these characters that I've grown so attached to this year were going to be okay, and I could see the paths they would take in the future. However, I would never say no to more books.
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This is such an enchanting book!
Seren a young orphan girl finds herself and her friend Tomos involved with an usual character a talking mechanical wind-up crow who has been a prisoner in this bird like form for over 100 years after encountering the midnight Swan. 
Their quest leads them in to fantasy worlds with untrustworthy creatures. Will their efforts be in vain or will they help their friend the crow back in to his true form?
•Magical land
•Beautifully written 
•Natural creatures
•Lovely characters 
I enjoyed the use of the welsh language throughout the story too!
My daughter would love this book, I feel its suitable for children aged 7years and older.
I would highly recommend this book.
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This is a wonderful finale to the Clockwork Crow trilogy, weaving its spooky folkloric magic into a new adventure. Seren is the same brave and clever protagonist and I enjoyed reading this instalment where her reoccurring fears of further abandonment are addressed. It was also great to have Tomas awake for this book and bale to join her on her latest adventure! These two have such a lovely friend/sibling bond and it definitely needed the extra page time. The Clockwork Crow himself is a character I didn't particularly like in the first book but had warmed to by the time I reached this last book - his journey and characterisation are both funny and sad, but I loved how Fisher shows his true feelings under all the ego and grumpiness. Again, this was a short and formulaic adventure with a new threat from The Family (some might find this repetitive) but I think it's perfect for reluctant readers and those wanting something shorter to read. It's a beautiful end to the trilogy and I hope Fisher writes more books with Welsh folklore at the heart of them, as they are some of her best.
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The third part of a trilogy that started with The Clockwork Crow, and continued with The Velvet Fox, The Midnight Swan ties everything up beautifully and in a very satisfying way.

One of the things I really love about this trilogy is the feeling of dark, creepy fae magic. The Folk may be charming but their also definitely scary, and this enchanting darkness comes across so well. The tension between the attraction and the fear is increased for the final part of the trilogy, creating some incredible haunting and powerful scenes. 

There's a lot of humour too, which helps lighten the mood and keeps the book very readable. Most of it is at the expense of the poor clockwork crow, the children's tutor, trapped in the raggedy form of a crow. 

The story introduces a new mystery, a box that Seren finds in a delightfully mysterious market, and new creatures of power who can help her. The idea of a quest to seek a favour is such a fairy story classic, and it works so well here. Catherine Fisher is clearly very familiar with the older source material, and how to twist it into her own stories to create beautiful new patterns and pictures.

There's additional tension as the narrative deals headlong with the fact that Seren is an orphan, and a ward of the family, and what this might mean for her future. Watching her fret and worry about this, as she snoops around the house, really helped raise the already high emotional stakes and the novel delivers a suitably powerful emotional ending.
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Midsummer, and a visit to the local fair is a much anticipated treat for Tomos and Seren.  When she is drawn to a stall down a hidden alley where everything is one penny, Seren buys a little box with an inscription on the lid that could be the answer to restoring her friend the Clockwork Crow to his human form.  Hearing the faded markings represent a swan with a diamond collar, the Crow finally reveals how he came to be enchanted. 
Meanwhile, plans are in full flow to hold a summer ball at Plas y Fran, which Denzil fears will attract the Fair Folk and place Tomos in danger for a third time, and Seren has concerns of her own about her future.  
Mystery and magic are at the core of this engrossing novel, as Seren, Tomos and the Clockwork Crow attempt to resolve the Crow’s dilemma and guard against the devious machinations of the self-absorbed Fair Folk.  Seren needs all her willpower and strength of character to navigate her way through the perilous magical land to save her friends, and indeed, herself.
This is the final episode of an enchanting trilogy that blends folklore with a celebration of friendship and family in a historical setting.  All three are highly recommended.
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What a great and delightful story! I loved every moment and enjoyed the this well written and highly entertaining novel.
Great characters and world building, excellent storytelling.
I can't wait to read other stories by this author, this one is excellent.
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine
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I love Catherine Fishers books and this one did  not disappoint.

It was magic and I loved it. It was just what you wanted to read on a cold Sunday, wrapped up.

Dark, mysterious with an element of magic.
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The Midnight Swan continues the Clockwork Crow series in emphatic fashion.

Full of twists and turns and gripping from start to finish.
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Thank you so much to NetGalley and firefly press for the earc to read and review.

What an incredible way to finish off this incredible series. I loved both the two prior books in the series but I think I actually loved this one the most. 

As always the story is so well thought out and so creatively written, with this story comes closure, one final adventure to the dark fae world and our truthful answers for the clockwork crow. 

Seren was utterly brave in this one, each book she is brave and has things to overcome but this one she is even more fiercely brave and determined, this time to help break the crows curse once and for all but with it may come a huge sacrifice and a test of her hearts dearest desire. 

This story took us to the midnight swan an evil black swan darkened in her heart for something They did to her many centuries before. Tomos, Seren and The Crow have to pass her tests if they want to reach her and it won’t be so easy as They are always lurking. 

I’m so glad to have completed the story and this series and I totally cried in that last chapter not going to lie. This is a new favourite series that I will gladly read over and over. So creatively thought out, incredible adventures, mystery, intrigue and fear whilst reading and characters that you cannot help but connect with.
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I have to say that Catherine Fisher is definitely one of my favourite children’s writers, her stories are always chock full of magic, mystery, suspense and excitement.  The Midnight Swan is the third book in The Clockwork Crow trilogy, aimed at children of 8 to 12 years yet enjoyable by a far wider age range (65 – thank heavens I have grandchildren to use as an excuse!) For those like me who had not read the first two books – The Clockwork Crow and The Velvet Fox (now rectified in my own case), a brief summary, without spoilers, is called for:
Seren is an orphan and in the first book, on her way to a new life in a remote house, she is given a newspaper parcel by a stranger,  late at night in a deserted railway station. When she arrives at her new home, she finds that there is a lot of mystery and sadness concerning the absence of Tomos who has been missing for a year and a day. Seren sets off on a magical quest to try and find Tomos.
Catherine Fisher is also a poet and for me her books are full of poetry, her writing is beautiful and magical in itself. What happens to Seren and Tomos is an elegant fairy tale, Wales is full of wonderful magical tales and Catherine Fisher continues this heritage beautifully. This trilogy, like her previous novels is exceptional in every way. I cannot recommend this trilogy highly enough and for those who have read the first two books...WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?
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With this book being the third book i had to read the first two before i could get to this. I found this such an easy read, finishing each book an hour or two after starting it. The Midnight Swan could be read as a standalone however i do recommend reading the first two books - The Clockwork Crow and The Velvet Fox first so you get the full story of Seren, Tomas and The Crow. This was a fantastic end to the trilogy and is definitely recommended for younger readers. It will keep them hooked from beginning to end.
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It’s the Summer Fair! At first, Seren is distracted by the worries of her dear friend, the Crow, but she and Tomos are soon completely enthralled by all of the amazing sights, sounds and smells that fill their senses. They want to see and do everything – except try the wooden roundabout with horses gently rising up and down. It reminds them too much of the magical carousel in book two! As Seren explores the fair, she comes across a small, dark alleyway. There she finds a stall laden with wonderful objects. She can’t help but pick up an unusual box with a picture of a black swan wearing a diamond necklace and the mysterious words, “If you can open My closed lid, Your heart’s desire Inside is hid.” It will be the perfect gift for the Clockwork Crow so Seren decides to purchase the box. At that moment, everything changes. 

The Midnight Swan is a story full of powerful magic, daring quests, great sacrifice and true friendship. The truth about the Clockwork Crow is finally revealed leaving Seren and Tomos with an incredible task. Will they be able to solve the puzzles and face their fears in order to protect their home and each other? All the while, They are trying to find a way into the house and steal what they most desire: the Tylwyth Teg, Welsh fairy folk, want nothing more than a human child and treasure. They will do anything to capture one of the children and take them into their own world. 

Seren’s life is full of questions: Will the Crow ever become human again? What does her future hold? Will she be able to stay at Plas-y-fran or will she be sent away? Will They come for the children again? Is she safe? What does she truly desire? This determined, clever girl pushes all concern for herself aside as she uses her cunning to help those most dear to her. Her loyalty and strength make her a fantastic heroine. 

The Midnight Swan is an incredibly satisfying, layered conclusion to an outstanding trilogy of magic and folklore. With a pen that writes itself, a magical Midsummer Ball, birds who speak in riddles and the ultimate sacrifice in friendship, this is a story of suspense and wonder. Readers will be glued to its pages as they journey with Seren, Tomos and the Clockwork Crow right to the very end. 

Thank you to Firefly Press for this wonderful book!
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The Midnight Swan is the final part in this utterly enchanting trilogy and follows The Clockwork Crow and The Velvet Fox, both just as mesmerising as this book.

Seren and Tomos are enjoying the excitement of exploring the Summer Fair when Seren is drawn into a dark alley with an unmanned stall from which she acquires a small metal casket painted with the face of a black swan and the enticing message:  If you can open my closed lid, your heart’s desire inside is hid.  She takes this home to her tutor, who is trapped in the body of a Clockwork Crow, in the hope that opening it may help him find his human form again.  

As soon as the Crow sees the box, he knows it is the work of the Tylwyth Teg who are intent on causing dark mischief amongst humans, but also knows that it may provide the key to breaking the enchantment which has been cast over him.  He finally tells Seren and Tomos the truth of how he became enchanted, and it is worth having waited three books for!

So begins a dangerous journey by the children and the Crow to break the enchantment, a journey which sees Seren making a terrifying bargain, and which sees the Crow unleashing his own magic as they journey into an enchanted land to enter the Garden of the Midnight Swan, but will any of them have their heart’s desire met, or will the renowned trickery of the Fair Folk thwart them?

This story is beautifully atmospheric and lyrical, perfectly capturing the allure and danger of the Tylwyth Teg as they gate-crash Lady Mair’s Midsummer Ball and offer enticing, but perilous, bargains.  The underlying sense of danger and urgency is palpable as Seren, Tomos and the Crow are drawn inexorably towards the Midnight Swan. 

I adored the characters in this book.  Seren is a wonderfully kind-hearted and courageous girl who is prepared to make selfless sacrifices for those she loves.  She is desperate to belong in a family, and has doubts as to whether she is still welcome in Plas-y-Fran.  The Crow is absolutely brilliant!  He is cantankerous, rather rude and boastful yet also endearing as he is hiding behind a façade, feeling fearful, but trying not to show it.  

The Midnight Swan transported me into a magical world of enchantment, excitement and danger, and completely enthralled me with its evocative atmosphere, heart-warming relationships and sense of other-worldly mystery.
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The Midnight Swan is the third (and possibly the final) instalment in the Clockwork Crow series. Think Tom's Midnight Garden blended with The Chronicles of Narnia a dash of Alice in Wonderland and a sprinkle of a well-known fairy-tale and you will only be close to imagining the enchantment you about to be delighted with. Full of faery magic and folk-lore, The Midnight Swan is every bit as good as the previous two books and then some. 

I was thrilled to be reunited with the much-loved characters of Seren, Denzil, Mrs Villiers and of course, the cantankerous crow who is on form once again and is as irritable, demanding and bad-tempered as ever!

Returning to Plas-Y Fran felt like coming home. All is calm in the Welsh countryside and there has been no sign of 'Them' the infamous faery folk, the Tylworth Teg since our last visit. Summer has arrived and Seren Rhys is enjoying long, hot days spent playing in the sprawling gardens of the Victorian mansion with Master Tomos. It seems that orphan Seren has really become part of the family and Lady Mair treats the children to a trip to the Summer Fair. An afternoon of sherbert dabs, toffee apples and coconut stalls awaits, but just a few pages into the book, this idylic setting becomes the scene of a mysterious discovery. 

Seren finds an exquisitely crafted box, and beautifully painted on the lid is the face of a black swan wearing a collar of diamonds; The box of the Midnight Swan. Catherine Fisher's clever rhyming couplets at the opening of each chapter make a return and the box is inscribed with the words:

"If you can open My closed lid
Your heart's desire Inside is hid"

Could this be what the crow has been looking for all this time? We finally get to hear the much-awaited tale of how the crow really came to be in his current state and Seren and Thomas must accompany him on his quest to solve the riddle and lift the spell. But somehow, someone or something invites 'Them' back into Plas-Y Fran. The treacherous Tylworth Teg are at large once more. in search of a human child and bargains are made at a serious cost. It would seem that the faery folk aren't the only threat to Seren's charming new life, Captain Jones is acting strangely, a letter arrives from her Aunt's solicitor and whispered conversations are happening all around her. Seren fears  the family have grown tired of her and she is about to be sent away.

Wishes, curses, a secret garden, enchanted objects and talking animals are the perfect ingredients for a deliciously spell-binding fairy-tale adventure. The plot comes to comes to a nail-biting climax on Midsummer Night when our protagonist Seren is tested to the limit when faced with an impossible choice.

But it would seem all good things must come to an end and what can I say,.. although I felt bereft that this was possibly the last time I would get to step into the world of Seren Rhys and her crow,  it's the perfect end to the perfect trilogy.

I read each book in The Clockwork Crow series, back to back and in one sitting, completely and utterly enchanted by Catherine Fisher's magic. The three stories really lend themselves to being adapted for television and each would make a fantastic children's mini-series. 

I absolutely adore this trilogy and each book's shorter length and ease of reading make it perfect for pupils to enjoy in Lower Key Stage 2.
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I really enjoyed this third book in the series by Catherine Fisher because it was full of magic and adventure. Seren and the others are here, as well as new characters. Their mission, to save the clockwork crow and return him to his human form means that teamwork, magic and good planning are imperative. Seren meets a new family and is reunited with her godfather, and is adopted by her, ending a long string of personal tragedies.  A great book, to be recommended to 8-11 year olds. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ And a half stars! 
Thanks so much to #NetGalley for the opportunity to read this ahead of publication in exchange for an honest review.
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What  a truly delightful children's Book, full of Folk law ,Magic, adventures, wholesome friendships & what that means , trust ,love, & even the addition of learning some Welsh too.  This will be being added to the list of Books I'm going to buy & send to my grandchildren in Japan. As this story will enhance their English,teach them some words in Welsh which is also another language from their mixed  ancestry.
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I received an ARC of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

This is the third (and I'm assuming from the ending, final) book in the Clockwork Crow series following on from The Clockwork Crow and The Velvet Fox. You do need to read the other books in this series first or this book won't make a lot of sense to you.

These books are beautifully written with detailed descriptions that make it easy to envisage a country manor house in Wales 100 or so years ago. You can tell that the author knows a lot about the myths and legends from this area and as always the Fair Folk and their magic seems beautiful but with an uncurrent of cruelty and fear. 

I actually enjoyed this book more than the other two installments. My issues with both of the books prior to this one was I felt that Seren solved the problems she was facing too easily and the solution wasn't something that I, the reader, couldn't have worked out from what I was told. This book was much better in this respect and I felt as a whole the story was an interesting magical adventure.

There was definitely some character growth for both the Crow and Seren and the ending was well done. Several of the other characters (Captain Jones, Denzil and Lady Mair) haven't changed much and do still feel rather two-dimensional.

Overall, I would recommend this book to readers aged 8+ who enjoy magical stories and historical fiction.
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Quite simply... The Midnight Swan is the perfect end to the perfect trilogy. Each book is as deliciously dark and utterly spelling-binding as its prequel and Catherine Fisher enchants her reader from beginning to end. 

I must admit, I began The Midnight Swan with trepidation. The first two books in the series had captivated me. They were a work of art. Vibrant, almost visceral and all-consuming, I was part of Seren’s world. And so I was nervous...There were so many loose ends to tie together, so many ways that I could be disappointed as a reader. Would this be the classic case of a final book just not quite living up to expectations?

I am delighted to report that The Midnight Swan is the perfect swan song. It was everything I hoped it would be, and more! From the opening couplet to the final sentence, I was hooked. I devoured it, hungry to find out where the writer was leading me. Like its prequels, it cast a spell over me, and dropped me straight back into the world of Plas-y-Fran. 

Seren is the perfect protagonist: headstrong, loyal and courageous. Greeting her for the third time was like meeting an old friend. The Crow has retained all of his wit and charm and the relationship between these two characters is a thing of beauty.

The Midnight Swan is everything you could wish for in a children’s book. At its heart it’s an adventure story, steeped in mystery and suspense. Magic runs through each and every page and it’s rich in folklore. It’s historical fiction and it even has some comedy thrown in for good measure. It’s a truly fantastic book and a fitting end to a spell-binding trilogy.
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Think the joy of The Secret Garden crossed with the magic of Narnia and the dark enchantment of a fairy tale and you get The Midnight Swan. This tale transports you seamlessly from rural Wales to magical lands.

This, the third instalment of The Clockwork Crow adventures, continues the story orphan Seren Rhys and the sinister 'Them' who are always lurking. The story starts with Seren  trying to help the crow go back to his human form whilst worrying that she is going to be sent away from the family home which she has been welcomed into. We begin with a fair in the village where they live and are given the first experience of the dark magic surrounding them. The author's description is so vibrant and vivid it felt as if I was there. With my teacher hat on, I was thinking of all the activities and questions I could create to extend the children's thinking - and there were many! As a parent, I could imagine myself reading this as a bedtime story to my children (when they are old enough) and them begging me to read on. Each chapter starts with a poetic sentence or two which serves as a great introduction to the chapter and would be a great discussion point when reading this book with children.

I felt that this was probably the best yet of the books. The characters are well developed and each is lovable in their own way - even the cantankerous crow. This series will definitely become a well loved classic by my class and I could see it being made in to a magical adaption for the screen. Congratulations Catherine Fisher and thanks to Firefly Press for allowing me to read this beautiful book. I can't wait to introduce it to my class when it is published.
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The Midnight Swan is a great end to such a charming series. It has its own intriguing plot to hook you in, as well as a wonderfully satisfying ending to wrap up the trilogy. Magic, adventure and friendship. What more could you want?

I definitely recommend this series to young and old readers alike. It has an enchanting fairytale quality about it, with a great pace, lots of excitement and really likeable characters.
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