Glass Coffin

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Pub Date 3 Jun 2021 | Archive Date 1 Jun 2021

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Description

The final book in the acclaimed Darkwood trilogy – a modern fairy tale series to bewitch grown-up fans of Terry Pratchett and younger readers alike.

The tyrannous Huntsmen have declared everyone in one village to be outlaws, since they insist on supporting the magical beings of neighbouring Darkwood. Why won’t they accept that magic is an abomination?

Far from being abominable, the residents of Darkwood are actually very nice when you get to know them, even Snow the White Knight, who can get a bit tetchy when people remind her she’s a Princess.

In order to stop the Huntsmen from wiping out all magical beings, Snow and her friends have to venture into the Badlands of Ashtrie, and seek the support of the Glass Witch – but she has plans of her own, and let’s just say they’re not good ones.

The final book in the acclaimed Darkwood trilogy – a modern fairy tale series to bewitch grown-up fans of Terry Pratchett and younger readers alike.

The tyrannous Huntsmen have declared everyone in...


Advance Praise

Praise for Gabby Hutchinson Crouch:

‘Gabby is one of the funniest writers I know.’ Sarah Millican

‘...very funny. If you like Terry Pratchett, or think gothic fairytales should have more LOLs, ’tis the book for ye.’ Greg Jenner

‘I have read this and it is great. Pratchetty fun for all the family.’ Lucy Porter

‘...magical, surprising and funny.’ Jan Ravens


What people are saying about the Darkwood series:

‘Clever and funny and so very very entertaining. I would encourage everyone of every age to go ahead and read Darkwood.’

‘Completely fabulous, can’t wait for the rest of the series.’

‘A fun, exciting, action-packed story that once I started reading I couldn't put down.’

‘I loved the mix of humour and fantasy, the tongue in cheek style of writing and the quirky characters.’

‘I could go on and on about how much I love this book and why.’

‘A delightful new mashup of old familiar fairy tale characters and themes, with loads of originality and memorable characters. … I think this may well turn into one of my all-time favourites.’

‘…incredible! It made me laugh out loud in several places, but also managed to pull off some intricate themes around power and bigotry – I adored the characters and the fun, genre-savvy writing.’

Praise for Gabby Hutchinson Crouch:

‘Gabby is one of the funniest writers I know.’ Sarah Millican

‘...very funny. If you like Terry Pratchett, or think gothic fairytales should have more LOLs, ’tis the...


Available Editions

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ISBN 9781788421478
PRICE £8.99 (GBP)

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Average rating from 38 members


Featured Reviews

+Alas! Gabby Hutchinson Crouch warned us that her Darkwood books would be a trilogy and that would be it. No lovely long series of books like Terry Pratchett’s Discworld or Balzac’s Human Comedy, where we meet various characters multiple times in forty-odd books. The third and final novel – Glass Coffin - is here. I really enjoyed the book. There aren’t as many laugh-out-loud dentures-across-the-room moments as there were in the first book, but there is still plenty of humour. And an alternative view upon fairy tales. I bet you don’t remember reading a fairy tale that starts with the heroine having her first period, do you? Snow White admits to having them too and tells Gretel “You’ll soon get used to +them.” After all, periods happen in real life. Dealing with them might be inconvenient and awkward, but it’s what real women do. There was only one aspect that I found unconvincing. One of the climaxes of the book involves two witches battling. One survives because their magic “automatically” protects them. Not because they have a sneaky trick or because they’re morally better; their magic just kicks in automatically to save them. That seemed a bit of a cop-out. Don’t misunderstand me: this is an excellent book and I had to read it in a single sitting because I was desperate to know what happened next. It’s a worthy climax to the trilogy and is very satisfying in the way it concludes various plot-lines. I would strongly advise you to read the books in order: Darkwood, Such Big Teeth and then Glass Coffin. It’s not just that they’ll make much more sense that way, but that you’ll enjoy them a lot more. I’m heartbroken that we’ve seen the last of Darkwood but I can start again at the beginning. Unless, Gabby, we can persuade you to write another Darkwood book? Pretty please? #GlassCoffin #NetGalley

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Why hadn’t anyone introduced me to this series before? I’m giving you all side-eye if you knew about it and didn’t throw it directly into my path. Did I just binge read all three books back to back in 3 days? Yes, yes I did. Is my new favourite character a sassy loveable spider who likes to wear hats? Even though I’m arachnophobic? Also yes. With nods to many of our all time favourite fairytale characters, albeit with lives a little different than we’re used to, The Darkwood series manages to tackle all sorts of issues, in an understated way, while giving us a jolly good laugh (and maybe a small cry). Buttercup lives in a house in the wood that’s almost entirely made of cake – since everything she touches turns into pastries. Snow the White Knight has been living in a cave with her lads, the dwarves for many years, Jack still can’t forgive himself for the terrible business with the giant that started a war, Gretel is living in the forest with the rest of the witches, even though they accused the wrong twin, Patience Fieldmouse is still pretty trousered off about being made a ghost before she was ready and Trevor the talking spider just wants to be the best spider spy there is. He’s got all the costumes and everything. Now they’re off, with some new friends, to try and recruit the most terrifying witch of all to their cause, Ella, the Glass Witch. But they’ll need all the help they can get to stop the Huntsmen exterminating all the witches and wiping out the Darkwood altogether. If you’re looking for a twisted fairytale series, that scores a 10 on the fun-o-meter, while giving you plenty of aha moments and social issues to ponder, this series is for you!

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This is the third book of a series, of which I've not read the first two (yet, anyway; I probably will do so). However, there was enough previously-on that I got caught up easily and had no trouble following it. At first I thought: you can have traditional fairy-tale characters, or you can have rounded characters, but it's very difficult to manage to have both, and this author is attempting to do so more by telling than by showing. However, a lot of that was the backstory/recap, and in the end I did feel like at least some characters exhibited at least some depth. There were a lot of characters, though, and most of them still felt a bit one-note. It's reasonably funny. It's not Terry Pratchett funny, but then, what is? It's British funny, too, which works for me. Like Pratchett, it's also good-hearted and believes in people, and their potential, and that all of them should be treated equally and fairly and as people (I can't say "human beings" in this context, given that one is a spider, and another a werewolf, and several have been transformed into one thing or another, but you know what I mean), and that the most unlikely, ordinary-seeming people can be heroes in the right situation. <spoiler>When it came to the resolution, one antagonist got to have a redemption arc, a little bit implausibly to me, and the other did not. It seemed to come down to the difference between being warped by a tragic past versus just being a bloody psychopath. But I had to squint a bit to see the difference. </spoiler> Overall, the good-heartedness (and the fact that it's not chock-full of the usual copy editing issues, even in the pre-release copy I got via Netgalley) gets it into my Best of the Year recommendation list, though perhaps only by a whisker. For my taste, it's better than Jasper Fforde - I've never been a huge Fforde ffan, to be honest - but has a long way to go to be Pratchett at top form. On the other hand, this is only the third book, and the third Diskworld book had a long way to go to be Pratchett at top form, too. It shows promise, and fulfils at least some of it.

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Glass Coffin is the third and I think final book in the Darkwood series and it is by far the best. We join our intrepid gang of magical and non magical misfits as they prepare to take on the might of the Huntsmen. The team decide to split up (never wise) Snow, Gretel, Hex and Jack go off to cursed Ashtrie in search of the Glass Witch to recruit her to the cause, the rest of the gang head to the citadel to start a whisper revolution to unite the magical people and drum up the support of the non magical through good deeds and general niceness. These books are so much fun and I love reimagined fairy tales and I like that that’s kind of secondary to the message of the book. They are just a bunch of good guys going up against the corrupted powers that be. Obviously Trevor is the best and props to Gretel for doing it all while on the blob, what a trooper.

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Thanks to Netgalley and Farrago for an advanced copy of the ebook for Glass Coffin. Glass Coffin is the final book in the Darkwood trilogy, a satirical story that uses fairytale characters, creatures, settings, and tropes to take a deep look at real world issues and historical occurrences (the witch trials for example). In this book we follow our main characters as they plan to overcome the Huntsmen and look for an alliance with the mysterious and utterly frightening Glass Witch. I am going to mention straight off that I did not love this one as much as the first book, but it probably equals the second book. Don't get me wrong, I still really loved this and Such Big Teeth. But in comparison to Darkwood itself, there are a couple of issues that bring them down a little bit. In Such Big Teeth it was the weird boundary stomping that our characters engaged in. In this one it was a bit more simple in that it was just a bit less funny, a bit less satirical, a bit less… I don't know. But I think the fact that in Glass Coffin we moved among a much larger point of view cast perhaps made it a little bit less personal, because things are a bit more scattered. I want to emphasise my use of the words "bit" and "little". Because it's not a big thing, it was just noticeable enough to me that it took me a little bit longer to engage fully with the book than it did in the first book. But it didn't make me dislike the book at all. There is a bit more romance in this book than in the previous two books. Again, there is nothing actually sexual in these books - though there is a lot of mentions of kissing, or snogging since this is from a British author. There are three specific relationships happening in this book among our main characters, one lesbian, one gay, one straight. The casual inclusiveness of this series is great. There is no emphasis placed on the same sex relationships, no one remarks upon the fact that they are same sex, and the idea of a queen marrying another woman is merely celebrated because, I mean, party time right? Although I should mention these is also a fair bit of nudity in this book. Not descriptive nudity, mind you, just nudity. Because there are so many shapeshifting characters that leads to many people reverting to human form without clothes on. It's a bit weird, and at times crazy with just how many there are. But it's also quite amusing. I also really appreciated that, with our main main character being a 13 year old girl, this book happens to also include something that is missing from a lot of books that focus on teen girls. Menarche or menstruation in general. Gretel gets her first "monthly" and is horrified by the contraption women wear so sets out to create something new. There isn't a huge focus on this, but every now and then through the book Gretel thinks to herself about the dull ache in her abdomen, reminding us that just because she's gone on an adventure or is in exciting danger, that doesn't mean the pain and everything just disappears. Where Gabby Hutchinson Crouch seems to shine with her writing is when things are going crazy. She has a great way of breaking what is mass amounts of craziness into simple pieces in the best way possible to convey what is actually happening and just how insane everything really is. It draws you in, makes you feel the crazy, but still lets you see what is happening without feeling confused. And again, it's really very amusing. As with Darkwood though, the thing I loved most about this book was the focus on the inherent goodness in people. The people in this story are so loyal and caring and loving. It's so hard to imagine that their world was able to be overcome in such dark ways when the people are just so amazing. Even the more dislikeable characters are still so brave and lovely when it really matters. The people of the village of Nearby are such a great example of community, true community. And the characters of this series are the perfect example of found family, and real family. Any time someone is looking for a book that includes found family, loyalty, and community - this is the series that comes immediately to mind. It's just so heart-warmingly beautiful. And this book was a perfect little ending for the story.

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The final part of the trilogy. Gretel, Snow and the gang continue their battle to protect the magical folk against the evil huntsmen. Seeking the help of the Glass Witch of Ashtrie, part of the group set off through the Darkwood, whilst the others head off to the citadel. Unfortunately, the Glass Witch has no intention of helping them, on the contrary, she wants to eliminate them and the huntsmen feel exactly the same way. I have enjoyed this series immensely. The variety of characters, the twists of fairy tales and most of all the humour. This book is a beautiful homage to the power of friendship and solidarity. A fabulous ending and Trevor will always be my favourite character. The only downside is that it's all over, I will miss them all so much.

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Glass Coffin has cemented the Darkwood series as one of my favourites. The witty twist on our favourite fairy tales takes on a darker shade in this third installment: the characters we've got to know in the last two books showing more depth and intricacy; new characters bringing edges of warmth and of horror. We see different angles of characters we thought we knew, both good and bad, and meet new ones, all with striking individuality and their own ways of thinking. Glass Coffin is an absolute roller coaster of a read. There are the by now expected moments of laugh-out-loud humour, interspersed with scorching social commentary, seat-of-your-pants adventure, and scenes that made me gasp, and others that left me in tears. There is also wonderful attention paid to the practicalities of shape-changing, which I appreciated. As a series with a strong heart and social conscience, a dark humour reminiscent of Pratchett, and a cast of wonderfully memorable characters, if Darkwood doesn't soon become a modern classic I shall eat my trousers.

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Excellent finale for an excellent trilogy. I would say that here were a little less laugh out loud moments, but, well, everything was coming to it final moment, and it was very moving and altogether great!

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#GlassCoffin #NetGalley Glass Coffin is the final installment in the Darkwood series. It brings a finale and exciting ending to what has been an eminence and imaginative series. Readers will be satisfied with the last adventure and ultimate showdown.

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Thankyou to NetGalley for providing me with this eBook in exchange for an honest review. This can’t be the end of the series, it’s way to good to come to an end! I could read dozens more books involving this series! It’s no wonder why this series if a fan favourite The representation of beloved fairy tale characters are so imaginative and colourful that they become their own originals. Their friendship is what truly stands out and what makes this gang of quirky characters so awesome to read about. What I like most is that these characters that we all know and love have been reimagined into something different, something I have not read before, instead of the classic old retellings today. The women are strong, unconventional heroines. British humour is the way to my heart, and Crouch’s sardonic wit is captured so well, almost like a reminiscent whisper of Sir Terry Pratchett’s humour. Of course, Trevor carries the weight of this. It’s heart-warming but full of action and romance, humour and fantasy. A perfect ending to this perfectly imagined and exhilarating series. (I do hope this a glimmer for more in the future!)

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A romping conclusion to the Darkwood Series that neatly ties up the individual tales of fan favorites from Ashtrie, the Darkwood, Nearby, and even the Citadel. Roughly half the novel is focused on the malevolent machinations of the villainous Queen Ella (Cinderella) whose devastating rule over Ashtrie has long lurked in the background of the other two novels. The other half of the novel focuses on the Citadel and the efforts of the Darkwoods denizens to end the reign of the Chief Hunstman newly installed in Book 2 and put the White Knight (aka Snow White) back on the throne. This is probably one of the darkest books in the series, although most of the horror of war is softened by Crouch's wry narration. Reading the other books in the series before reading this one is highly recommended, verging on required.

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Glass Coffin is the last book in the Darkwood trilogy. I had not read the others but did not have too much of a problem following along. The story follows Gretel, Snow, and their crew in a battle with the huntsmen. I really enjoyed the book, the only issue I had was that there were a lot of characters to keep track of. Now I will be going back to read the first two.

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Loved this! I own the first two books and will be buying this one as well! Such a great end to a trilogy. As always Gabby is funny and entertaining and deals with tougher issues in a subtle and easy way

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Thank you to NetGalley for providing me this advanced copy in return for an honest review In order to get to this book, I had the pleasure of reading the entire trilogy, and I absolutely loved every installment. I binge-read the entire trilogy in less than a week because I could not get enough of Gabby Hutchinson Crouch's writing. Somehow she makes this retelling of fairytales so witty, profound, and funny. I loved how she was able to bring well-known characters into a fresh tale where they weren't necessarily tied down to their original narrative. I loved the inclusion of romance in this book and how same-sex relationships were casual and inclusive. There was no exaggeration of them, but instead, the celebration of an entire community over two queens getting married to one another. I liked this book a lot and would definitely recommend it to those that want a fun yet dark reading experience with fairytales. CW: nakedness, brief fatphobia

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I had no idea this title was part of a series! And if you look it up on Amazon make sure to use the author name because apparently there's a lot of other similar series with the same name! "Magic is forbidden in Myrsina, along with various other abominations, such as girls doing maths. This is bad news for Gretel Mudd, who doesn’t perform magic, but does know a lot of maths." I mean come on, how can you not want to know more about this series!? Despite not reading the previous titles I had no problem following along with this installment. This is an interesting and much more humorous take on fairy tales. Absolutely enjoyed this title and I'm aiming to read the previous two before this one is released! Review on my blog closer to release date!

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A sweet fairytale retelling! I love how the author made her own version and mix the characters. It was a sweet ride :)

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“‘Something’s afoot,’ mutters Trevor. ‘I can feel it in my knees.’” Welcome to the Darkwood, a place where Bin Night is a truly terrifying event, where ‘fruit’ and ‘trousers’ are entirely acceptable swear adjacent words and where your favourite person may well be a talking spider called Trevor. It’s the final book in the trilogy and I’m not okay with that. Not even a little bit. We first met Gretel when she ended up in the Darkwood after being accused of the abomination of witchcraft by the Huntsmen. There she met some of the scary, no good creatures she’d been warned about: * Buttercup, a witch whose touch can cakeify inanimate objects. * Jack, known throughout the land as the infamous giant killer. * The White Knight, an axe-wielding, armour wearing woman with attitude and her entourage of “Yummy!” dwarves. * Patience, who was a huntsman before she became a ghost. * Mirror, who’s a mirror. * Trevor, my favourite character. Trevor’s a spy and master of disguise. Along the way we picked up some more found family, including: * Gilde the Bear Witch. * A Werewolf named Scarlett. * A winged man named Hex. “Magic forest - these things happen.” Together, this bunch of misfits have been working towards freedom for magical beings, who aren’t the abominations they’ve been made out to be, and uniting magical and non-magical beings. That’s definitely not going to happen under the rule of the Huntsmen. “Whatever it is they’ve been building up to, they’re doing it now.” In this book we finally travel to the Badlands of Ashtrie to meet the much feared Glass Witch. She lived up to my expectations, and then some. This is a book where facing the past is something many of our favourites will need to do. A number will also confront their fears of not being good enough, brave enough or enough in general. They have the opportunity to decide who they are going to be, outside of the roles cast on them by society. The Glass Witch is the perfect character to introduce to this mix. ‘Just keep in mind, the only thing you can truly be sure of regarding the Glass Witch is that you can’t be truly sure of anything.’ Our beloved friends will need all of their courage and ingenuity to prevail in this final battle. Although there were still some giggles to be had, things have a darker feel here than in the previous two books. Even Trevor isn’t coming up with as many unforgettable lines. But it’s okay because we’re really at the business end of things now and there is so much to wrap up. This world turns what you thought you knew about fairy tales on their head. What other third act do you know that begins with the main character [SPOILER - getting her first period - SPOILER]?! Also, there are many more naked people in this book, for reasons that will become apparent when you read it. If you’re wandering into the Darkwood for the first time you’ll find a handy description of who’s who in the Darkwood, Nearby Village, the Citadel and Ashtrie before you begin the story. I would highly recommend reading the series in order though. ‘You can allow yourself to heal, put your past behind you…’ In considering my not being ready to say goodbye to these characters I tried to come up with a reason for their story to continue and I think I’ve got just the thing … a spin-off featuring Trevor and his adventures in the Intelligence & National Security Initiative. I would happily read about my favourite spider forever. Thank you so much to NetGalley and Farrago, an imprint of Duckworth Books, for the opportunity to read this book.

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Brothers Grimm receive a Makeover. The Glass Coffin is the third book in the Darkwood series, following Darkwood and Such Big Teeth. All the characters in the book are based on the Brothers Grimm Fairy Tale characters, but with a twist. Because these quirky individuals are far from their original stories, as you could probably go without losing their identity, and they are woven into the plotline well. The plotline follows a group of Witches (and non-Witches) on a quest to recruit the best witches available from across the land, to take down the evil Huntsmen who desire to rid the world of Magic (especially Witches). Our main heroine Gretel (new girl, non-witch, inventor) leads her friends, who include Snow (wears white armour, wields an axe), Buttercup (cake witch, lives in gingerbread cottage, she’s in love with Snow), Jack (accidental giant killer, earth-witch, in love with Hex (half-man/raven)), Trevor (talking spider, wonderful collection of hats) and others, on a twofold quest to enrol as many witches as possible from the Citadel and to reach out to the Glass Witch formerly Queen Ella of Ashtrie. So, breaking up the group becomes necessary. Some head to the Citadel, some head off to Ashtrie. But unbeknownst to Gretel, Snow, Jack and Hex, in going to Ashtrie, they could be walking into a trap. Hansel, Gretel’s brother, the Mudd Witch, is wanted by Ella (the Glass Witch) to be her new Prince Charming. And she usually gets what she wants. The story runs along at a nice pace, the banter between the characters is witty, but there’s empathy, love and emotion in there as well. I think it’s that interaction between the characters that gives the book that bit of energy. I loved the characters more than anything else, and if the Brothers Grimm were alive today, they’d probably sue. The book reminds me a little of Tom Holts ‘Snow White and the Seven Samurai’, which has a more grown-up feel to the humour. At only 231 pages, the book is not overly long, classed as a teen-young adult fantasy fiction and adult fiction. The book has LGBTQ+ representation, which is done well without making it politically correct or done as an afterthought. If you are looking for a light-hearted, humorous read, then this might be the book for you. I am sure that there will be more to come from Gabby Hutchinson Crouch. I hope so.

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I really enjoyed this book and the whole series. I loved the way it was written and how the characters came to life. I had not read the other books prior to receiving this one however I flew through the others and then this one as well and was sad when the book ended. Thank you Netgalley and Duckworth Books for this ARC however all opinions are my own!

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Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to read this book before release. Unfortunately, it just isn’t for me and I am unable to give a review at this time.

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I'm struggling to think of some superlatives I didn't use on the first two books in this series! I may have to reuse the same ones ... this is clever, it's stonkingly funny, the character arcs are wonderfully rounded off and everything makes sense, in the end. (I am a little disappointed that Gretel didn't make one connection I did, but it's always easier from outside the story, isn't it.) Some parts of this were so unexpected, but they make perfect sense in retrospect. I'm so sad this series is over ... I really thought it could go on for a good while yet ... but at the same time, I'm glad it stopped before the quality went down. This could easily have been overstuffed, with cameos thrown in just because they could be, and I'm glad they aren't. Everyone here is necessary. (Especially Trevor.) There's some clever ideas around power and morality, but they aren't shoved in the reader's face; we're allowed to draw our own conclusions, which is much better. These would make a great classroom read, there could be some fabulous discussions on them. I'll miss this series very much, but I'm looking forward to seeing what else Gabby can come up with. It's going to be great, whatever it is.

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This is the third book in the Darkwood series, and hopefully not the last! I definitely recommend reading Darkwood and Such Big Teeth first, to really get the full picture of the characters and the wider storylines. Gretel and Hansel Mudd return to join battle with the Huntsmen again, but this time they also have the dreaded Glass Witch to contend with. Luckily, they still have their faithful friends – Jack, Hex, Buttercup, Trevor, Snow, Gilde, Scarlett, Patience and Daisy – to help them with the increasingly dangerous challenges they face. Unfortunately, Morning Quarry is putting a plausibly pleasant face to one kind of evil, while another kind has chosen Hansel as its next victim. Distracted by Jack smooching, Buttercup and Snow bickering, and her first ever menses, can Gretel hold it all together and logic them all out of this battle with her usual gadgets? It looks like they might need more magical help from a few more familiar – reimagined – faces! This instalment is quite a bit darker than the first two: some of the Glass Witch’s punishments are quite nightmarish and there is far more random nakedness than you usually get in fairytales (not sexual nakedness… just not-having-on-of-clothes, as an occupational hazard of shapeshifting). Nothing to make it unsuitable for most middle-graders, but those of a sensitive (or prim) disposition may want to approach with caution! As usual, there is plenty of humour and action; familiar fairytale folk and storylines twisted into something new and delightful, and more modern in feel, and some lovely messages about love, friendship and playing to your strengths. The ending was very satisfying and provided plenty of closure, but honestly, I don’t care! I still want MORE from the Darkwoods and from Gabby Hutchinson-Crouch – there must be one or two more childhood legends lurking around for her to work her special magic on. Fingers crossed, eh?! 'Humans will always be petty and jealous and mean. They will always attempt to unseat the Glass Witch. When this latest lot try, they will regret it, as humans do. She will dance on them, in a dress woven from their screams, and shoes of broken glass. She will have a ball on their re-moulded bodies, and she will dance all night with this new, powerful witch boy. Her brand new Prince Charming.' – Gabby Hutchinson-Crouch, Glass Coffin Review by Steph Warren of Bookshine and Readbows blog

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Unfortunately this is the last novel in this great series and I'm sad. It is an excellent story, full of humor and well written. I loved the great characters and loved the storytelling. It's a bit less funny than the previous books but an excellent story. Highly recommended. Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine

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This book picked up perfectly from the second one in the series. I loved how the author continued to grow the characters. There was so many parts in the book where I had to stop and re read because I it was so unexpected! I truly loved this book and the seires. I am so sad that it is over. I love dark twisted versisons of things and this book was totally that. I am hoping that maybe the author comes out with some other bits or spin offs! Regardless if that is what Gabby does or not, I will be picking up their next book!

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The Battle of Nearby village was just the start . . . What a deliciously satisfying end to the Darkwood Trilogy! Gabby Hutchinson Crouch gives us a unique spin on fairy tales that surprise us and make us fall in love with them again. This time, Cinderella gets the 'Darkwood' treatment" and we see familiar aspects of that tale presented in unexpected, hilarious (and often heart-warming ways). The "Glass Witch" has been a foreboding presence in the previous books and we finally get to see her in all of her ruthless, dark and devious glory. I laughed and cried my way through this book and said goodbye to some of my favourite friends such as Trevor, the magical talking spider (and super spy!), Snow, the warrior Queen and Gretel, the brilliant, teenage inventor. My biggest criticism of the book is that the Darkwood trilogy is now over. I do hope that Gabby Hutchinson Crouch decides to revisit the land of Myrsina so I can lose myself in another world all over again.

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I just finished this final installment in the Darkwood trilogy and I have to say: I loved it. Call them fractured, twisted, modern, or whatever else you might want, these fairy tales are alive and kicking. All the old characters are reimagined in humorous and lovable ways: Snow, the White Knight, who lives in a cave with seven very hairy, very smelly, very loyal dwarves; Hansel the Mudd Witch and his twin sister Gretel the inventor; Buttercup, she of edible cottage in the woods fame; Jack the Lad, who accidentally killed a giant as a child and has been a charming rogue on the run ever since. Add to these a talking spider, a half man-half raven, a cranky old witch, a werewolf, and some brand new additions like Rumplestiltskin and Salad, whose magical talent is hair that grows constantly (bonus points if you understand the name reference there), and my favorite new character: Old Nikolas, the Midwinter Witch. Anyway, there's battles brewing, an evil queen in a glass castle to be overthrown, a crew of evil Huntsman, and some very big feelings to be dealt with as well. This is a great adventure full of magic and fun, humor and ingenuity, with intense scenes of battle and tender scenes of friendship and love, with the theme of accepting yourself and others with love arching over the whole story. I have loved this whole series and am sad to see it end. I am sure I will return to the Darkwood and the friends that dwell therein again somewhere down the road. Until then, Merry Jolly!

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With Thanks to Duckworth Books and Gabby Hutchinson Crouch for an advance readers copy of the book. 4 1/2* A very enjoyable, and unique fairy tale retelling. This is the third of 3, and I hadn't read the first two however there is enough background to catch up pretty quickly. The writing is witty! That's the only real way I can put it, clever, laugh out loud funny with a note of sarcastic social commentary. I'm a big fan of this style of writing, (think Terry Pratchett, Jodi Taylor or Ben Aaronovitch) and I'm really happy to have found a new author to obsess over, I loved this one enough to go out and purchase the pervious 2, i plan to binge read them all together.

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I'm in love with this series. Gabby is able to continue her immersive world-building and delightfully complex characters in this book as she generated in the first two. She concludes character story arcs in a satisfactory way, and it was truly a joy to read.

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I’m so sad, this is the last book in a series that completely stole my heart. This series and the book contains a beautifully written, told and constructed story, full of humor and great characters, strong heroines, but it’s the friendship that truly stands out, this band ragtag band of friends stole my heart and I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to leave them behind. Thoroughly and highly recommended Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for a free copy for an honest opinion

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Such a big fan of this series and it’s such a shame it doesn’t get more hype! This is the 3rd book in the series and is just as wonderful as the other two books- there were some moments in this book that had some very powerful quotes that could be applied to modern day life, and I think that’s a very important message for the audience

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