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Locke & Key, Vol. 3: Crown of Shadows

(Locke & Key #3)

4.40  ·  Rating details ·  34,916 ratings  ·  1,984 reviews
The dead plot against the living, the darkness closes in on Keyhouse, and a woman is shattered beyond repair, in the third storyline of the Eisner-nominated series, Locke & Key! Dodge continues his relentless quest to find the key to the black door, and raises an army of shadows to wipe out anyone who might get in his way. Surrounded and outnumbered, the Locke children fin ...more
Hardcover, 152 pages
Published February 2013 by IDW Publishing (first published July 27th 2010)
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Average rating 4.40  · 
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 ·  34,916 ratings  ·  1,984 reviews

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Start your review of Locke & Key, Vol. 3: Crown of Shadows
I've read this multiple times and it's always good stuff.


Intense, dark, and (minus the spooky twist) a very realistic look at a family crumbling under the weight of a tragedy. And the older I get the more I can sympathize with Nina and her struggles. Fantastic job, Mr. Hill.


Original review 2012
Crown of Shadows is yet another awesome installment in this series. Joe Hill is at the top of his game telling the story of this family, and Rodriguez is quickly shooting to the top of my list as the il
May 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The third volume of Locke & Key sees Dodge go all-out in search of the Keys; and the Lockes start to discover a lot more about their legacy, although mum remains in a stupor. Uncle Duncan's role also increases. The creativity around the use and looks of the keys by the creative team is beyond genius, second to none! 8 out of 12.
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

This review is brought to you by the craaaaaaaaaazy cat lady . . .

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Crown of Shadows picks up right where Head Games ended. With their mother spiraling further into alcoholism and depression, the kids are on their own. And when one of said kids has decided to remove all fear from her brain, things have the potential of getting a bit dangerous . . .

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Throw into the mix more shenanigans from Dodge and his desperate attempts to find
Edward Lorn
Feb 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is easily my favorite volume so far. The comedy's on point. The artwork is the best it's been. The ending had me on the verge of tears. The action was gnarly and super fun. And the shadow monsters were fuckin epic.

This is the moment I fell in love with this series. Dig it.
Sam Quixote
Oct 16, 2011 rated it liked it
Three volumes in and Locke & Key’s story remains largely unchanged. The Locke kids – Tyler, Kinsey and Bode – continue to grieve over their murdered father, their mother’s still drinking heavily, and Zack Wells/Dodge/whatever its name is in this book, is doing more dastardly things. This time he’s looking for the black key… to do something, probably evil! Kinsey goes to a cave, following her dad’s footsteps as a teen, and more magic keys appear in the Lockes’ cartoonishly gothic mansion, Keyhous ...more
mark monday
Jul 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
oooooo... the eeriest of the eerie, The Crown of Shadows! and what exactly is a crown of shadows? well, the wearer of this fell crown becomes the Dread Lord of All Shadows. and what exactly does that mean? well, shadows become solid and are now at your beck & call - to dance, to fight, to search for magic keys, to battle man and woman (and poor little children and headstrong teenagers as well), to wreak havoc and to bring down terror amongst your enemies. i want one! i can think of a lot of thin ...more
Will M.
Jun 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Out of the three volumes this is probably the best one yet. The plot just keeps getting better. I've finally learned to truly appreciate the different powers of the keys. The two latest keys were nothing but fantastic. I honestly want all of them for myself. Especially the key with the head thing. I don't want to spoil anything, so I'm not going to talk about the powers anymore.

The characters got even better now. I'm liking everyone but the villain, Luke. He's an annoying piece of shit to be hon
Kayla Dawn
Sep 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
These are definitely my favorite graphic novels.
¸¸.•*¨*•♫ Mrs. Buttercup •*¨*•♫♪

Very interesting volume. I love how the story is progressing. Towards the end, the issues become faster, with less words and more pictures. I don't necessary have a problem with it, but I hope it doesn't become a trend for the author to make this longer than necessary. And oh the cliffhanger at the end of this volume! Now I can't wait for number 4.
Montzalee Wittmann
Bode keeps finding keys!

Locke & Key Vol. 3: Crown of Shadows by Joe Hill has Bode finding more keys! One makes shadows creatures come alive and the other keys you will have to read about! Quite the imagination! A fun, strange, and sometimes creepy story by always awe inspiring. The graphics are out of this world!
Algernon (Darth Anyan)
Jun 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014

The Dreams and Ideas of Free Men are as an Army of Shadows, and as impossible to strike down ...

So says Colonel Adam Crais, a hero of the American Revolution whose statue guards the grounds of the school where the Locke kids go in Lovecraft, Massachussets. The quote is well chosen to define the turning moment in the comic book series written by Joe Hill and brilliantly illustrated by Gabriel Rodriguez. Because in this third album, the Locke kids start to fight back against their hidden e
Jan 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Well I can tell you one thing about working from home - you certainly need a lot of distractions to get you through the work - and re-reading this series has certainly been great fun although I realise that even though I sit next to the computer all day long I have let my updates slide a bit.

We are now at the mid-point to the series which I think (okay I am no writer but I can imagine right) that this is the challenging point. Where you are past the introductions and setting the scenes, rather
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
I think this may have been my favorite Locke & Key volume so far. There's been such a solid well of character development built up in the last two volumes that this one was capable of playing off of nonstop action without feeling rushed or lacking. As usual, the artwork is beautiful and the writing is Joe's typical bizarre, creepy, delightful style.

In volume 3, Dodge is determined to find the Omega Key, and raises an army of shadows to fight the poor Bode children, who are realizing that the sta
May 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez has done it again with this volume of Locke and Key. I absolutely love this series and I'm so sucked in! They did an amazing job on this series so far and I can't wait to read the rest of it! ...more
Dec 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, horror
A good volume of the Locke & Key series, which really ramped up the action and furthered the plot a lot more than the previous instalment. With Crown of Shadows we’re introduced to a couple of new keys, and start to uncover a little bit more of the lore of the keys. We’re also really starting to see the emotional impact of previous events on our main characters. They’re struggling, which I’m not surprised at, but there’s also the burgeoning acts of courage and inner strength that are starting to ...more
May 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
***5 pleasantly surprised stars

I started reading this graphic novel series because of the recently released Netflix adaptation. I honestly didn't know what to make of it at first, but now three volumes in and I can only say they're pretty great :D

On to volume 4!
Aug 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing

Man oh man, is this series fantastic. Jamal and Scot are hilarious. I want to be friends with these two. The family is really falling apart, mainly due to Mama Locke falling into alcoholism. But with here out of the way, we get this fantastic arc with the Locke kids battling the crown of shadows. Rodriguez shows just how talented he is with all these diverse shadow creatures. He's created quite a menagerie. Then when Tyler breaks out the giant key, I was amazed at those full page panels. That wa
This series gets better and better. 3 more keys have been discovered in this book alone. The whole family is in on the finding of them now. They still seem to be losing against the villain who seems to be winning. This book is so creative and unexpected. I have no clue where its going and I am happy to ride with them where ever.

The art is continued and does a great job. They have the characters down.

I am excited to see what is going to happen next. I like IDW publishing, at least this book. I w
Dec 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: z2017, graphic-novels
Really good volume :)
Dave Schaafsma
Feb 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gn-horror
I never reviewed some of these volumes when thy originally came out, so because there is now a tv series, I decided to quickly reread them and write quick (for me, anyway) reviews to remind me of what is going on.

The series is a tribute to H. P. Lovecraft, obviously, from the subtitle, a horror series that is great because it is that rare, perfectly in-synch collaboration between good writing and art. So in this third volume things really begin to take off, with the grieving Locke kids--Tyler,
I admit that I was a little concerned that I might have lost the thread of this story and that just picking up with Volume 3 might be a bad decision. It's been a year and a half since I read Welcome to Lovecraft and Head Games back to back, after all. But, while it certainly wouldn't have been a sacrifice or anything to re-read Volumes 1 & 2, it wasn't necessary in the end.

True, this volume picks up right where the last one left off, but there's enough history in the story and the context to ma
Feb 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
It should go without saying, but this graphic novel is awesome!! This one is super dark and intense. Maybe even more so than the last one. And the more intense it gets, the more I love it. The art is still phenomenal and I find myself stopping to just stare at certain drawings.

Dodge’s character is just sooo intriguing and mysterious. Like who the heck is Dodge?!?! And when will the mom stop freaking out and start taking care of the kids?!?!

I’ll be keeping these reviews on the short side becaus
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Crown of Shadows is the third book in the Locke & Key series and starts right off from how book 2, Head Games ends.

The Locke kids are starting to slowly figure out that Keyhouse is more then it appears and the keys are magical abilities to do some cool stuff!

Kinsey is finally finding her tribe (true friends) which is great!
Bode is still trying to find all the keys in Keyhouse and is worried about his Mom.
By the way, the Mom has got to get her shit together. I know she’s in grief and wounded but
Apr 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, comix, 2012
Locke & Key has been nothing but spectacular since it's inception. Hill and Rodriguez, despite crafting a series about keys that literally do the impossible, have created these very relatable characters that are both memorable and seemingly real. You hurt when they hurt, cheer when they overcome and anticipate what happens next when the story ends. These are all feelings that an author wants to pull from their audience and Hill does it so well that it's hard to believe that he's still so young i ...more
Stewart Tame
Nov 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Still loving this series! There's been a lot of thought put into this story, and I'd hazard a guess that Hill had the whole thing planned out with a fair amount of detail before starting on this. Rodriguez echoes this detail in the art. I'm especially impressed by how many distinct characters he seems able to draw without the reader mistaking one for another. Things proceed at a decent pace. Some mysteries are being revealed, but more are being discovered. The end of the book promises some good ...more
I wish I could give this volume 10 stars because it deserves so much more than just 5. A true work of art, in story and in visuals. Someone give me the brain key so I can forget this volume then reread it then forget it and reread it again, over and over and over like I'm reading it for the first time because that's how amazing it was. ...more
Jun 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Huh, no spoilers in my old review, yay. And it still stands - at 30, still afraid of the dark and still plagued with night terrors. Go me.

6/10 - 6/13 2014
Oh what to say about Volume 3: CROWN OF SHADOWS?

Was I expecting more phenomenal storytelling by Joe Hill? Absolutely.

Was I expecting Gabriel Rodriguez to bring the words to life in a visual array of haunting beauty? You betcha!

And, I was no disappointed, at all.

The world evolves bringing the readers a new key that brings the horrors of shado
Ashley Daviau
Aug 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This series just becomes more and more stunning as it goes along. The story is just amazing and creepy and I love every second of it. Joe Hill really is a master at spinning a wonderfully creepy tale and this series is just further proof of that. I find that this instalment was much darker, it actually gave me chills at one point and I was completely sucked in and before I knew it it was already over and I was itching to pick up the next one! And of course I can’t end this review without mention ...more
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

This story just gets better and better. Accept the Locke kids poor mom is just going downhill pretty bad!

I loved how they showed all of the keys at the end and tells about them.

And as always, the graphics are just awesome!

I loved Jamal and Scot, they were hilarious! :)

On to the next....soon...
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Joe Hill's debut, Heart-Shaped Box, won the Bram Stoker Award for Best First Novel. His second, Horns, was made into a film freakfest starring Daniel Radcliffe. His other novels include NOS4A2, and his #1 New York Times Best-Seller, The Fireman... which was also the winner of a 2016 Goodreads Choice Award for Best Horror Novel.

He writes short stories too. Some of them were gathered together in

Other books in the series

Locke & Key (6 books)
  • Locke & Key, Vol. 1: Welcome to Lovecraft
  • Locke & Key, Vol. 2: Head Games
  • Locke & Key, Vol. 4: Keys to the Kingdom
  • Locke & Key, Vol. 5: Clockworks
  • Locke & Key, Vol. 6: Alpha & Omega

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