The Creeping Shadow by Jonathan Stroud

The fourth book in the wonderful Lockwood & Co series
The Creeping Shadow book cover

Book of the Year 2016 (see all)

The Creeping Shadow is the fourth book in the wonderful Lockwood & Co series. Sadly, this is (if reports are true) the penultimate instalment and the release of The Empty Grave in September 2017 will see the series end. Hopefully Stroud will either return to the series at a later date, or more likely, bring into being another fantastic series of books.

For those new to the series, first I recommend reading our review of The Screaming Staircase so as to completely avoid any spoilers. But if you would like a little taster of what the series is all about, here’s one that should whet the appetite: Britain is under the grip of a phenomenon called the Haunting. The dead are rising as ghosts, scaring and killing the population of England. The Problem, as it is called, is centred around London but its beginnings are rumoured to be in Kent. Only the young can see the ghosts and so, armed with silver rapiers, magnesium bombs and plenty of salt, they nightly battle ghosts, seeking to locate the source of the manifestation and neutralise it. Lockwood & Co is one of London’s Psychic Investigations Agencies and ghost-hunting is their job.

There is not much more I can add in praise of this series that I have not already said in my reviews for The Screaming Staircase, The Whispering Skull and The Hollow Boy. If, like me, you are thoroughly enjoying the Lockwood & Co series and eagerly await each installment then my advice is simple - get The Creeping Shadow immediately, it’s every bit as good as those that have gone before. The way that Stroud keeps the series fresh is one of many impressive things and this is achieved by creating ever-intriguing mysteries and through the ever-evolving relationship dynamics of the Lockwood & Co agency operatives. Lucy (and the Skull of course) left at the end of the last book and is now freelance agent, leaving Lockwood, George and Holly the remaining residents of 35 Portland Row. But they find that their paths soon cross and they find themselves working on the terrifying case of the Ealing Cannibal.

This is a grisly tale, in the best possible way. You’ll jump, laugh, be moved and be left wanting copious amounts of tea and biscuits. What else can I say? It’s brilliant, just as expected, just like every book I’ve read by Stroud. The scariest thing of all though is that the next book might just be the last... Please say it ain't true.

Very highly recommended.

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Have you read The Creeping Shadow?

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The Creeping Shadow reader reviews

from England


I'm not sure how anyone could say the writing is poor or the story generic, as this book is objectively neither of these things. It's witty, beautifully written, and like the others in the series, extremely original. I will also be sad to see Lockwood and Co go.

from USA


As usual, Stroud's writing skills are great. Interesting plot and character developments in this book, and I can't wait to see how the series will conclude.

from England


It was a very bad book, the narrative style was poor an the plot was so generic.

7.4/10 from 4 reviews

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