Joseph Delaney biography
Joseph Delaney is a retired English teacher living in Lancashire. His home is in the middle of Boggart territory and his village has a boggart called the Hall Knocker, which was laid to rest under the step of a house near the church.
Most of the places in the Spook's books are based on real places in Lancashire. And the inspiration behind the stories often comes from local ghost stories and legends. The Spook's Apprentice, The Spook's Curse and The Spook's Secret have all been shortlisted for the Lancashire children's Book for the Year Award. The Spook's Apprentice is the winner of both the Sefton Book Award and the Hampshire Book Award.
"I felt very comfortable writing the story from Tom Ward’s point of view. Only in the most recent book, ‘The Spook’s Sacrifice’, which I’ve just completed, has that been a slight problem. It has a larger cast of characters and more action than previous books; it would have been easier to tell the story from multiple perspectives. But I always seem to do things the hard way!"
Joseph Delaney, in an interview with Fantasy Book Review in 2008
The Spook's Apprentice spent 7 weeks in the Best-seller charts and sold over 35,000 copies in the first few months. The Spooks series is published in 24 countries: UK, USA, France, Germany. Hungary, Italy, Japan, Poland, Portugal, Brazil, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Spain, Sweden, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, The Netherlands, Greece, Israel, Thailand, Turkey and Indonesia. Life Sales World Wide across all titles are over 1 million copies!
The Wardstone Chronicles
- The Spook's Apprentice (2004)
Thomas Ward is the seventh son of a seventh son and has been apprenticed to the local Spook. The job is hard, the Spook is distant and many apprentices have failed before Thomas. Somehow Thomas must learn how to exorcise ghosts, contain witches and bind boggarts. But when he is tricked into freeing Mother Malkin, the most evil witch in the County, the horror begins...
- The Spook's Curse (2005)
The Spook and his apprentice, Thomas Ward, deal with the dark. Together they rid the county of witches, ghosts and boggarts. But now they have unfinished business to attend to in Priestown. Deep in the catacombs of the cathedral, lurks the Spook's nemesis - the Bane. A creature he has never been able to defeat. As Thomas and his master prepare for the battle of their lives it becomes clear that the Bane isn't their only enemy in town. The Quisitor has arrived, searching the county for those who meddle with the dark - witches, warlocks and Spooks! When the Spook is arrested and sentenced to death it's up to Thomas, with a little help from his old friend Alice, to rescue his master and destroy the curse of Priestown...
- The Spook's Secret (2006)
The nights are drawing in and it's time for Tom and his master to move to Anglezarke, the Spook's winter house. Tom has heard it will be a sinister and menacing place but nothing could fully prepare him for what he finds there. For this house, and indeed the whole of Anglezarke moor, is full of secrets about the Spook's past. Secrets that are about to come to the surface and could wreak havoc on the whole County...
- The Spook's Battle (2007)
In Pendle the witches are rising and the three most powerful witch clans are rumoured to be uniting in order to conjure an unimaginable evil. Together they will be capable of raising the dark made flesh – the Devil himself. Tom and the Spook need to set off for Pendle to avert the unthinkable. But before they go, the Spook tells Tom to journey home and collect the trunks Mam left behind for him. But what dark family secrets are contained in the trunks? And will they place Tom’s family in even greater danger or provide the help Tom and his master will need in Pendle?
- The Spook's Mistake (2008)
- The Spook's Sacrifice (2009)
- The Spook's Nightmare (2010)
- The Spook's Destiny (2011)
Complementary books to The Wardstone Chronicles
- The Spook's Tale (World Book Day, 2009)
- The Spook's Stories: Witches (2009)
- The Spook's Bestiary (2010)
- The Spook's Stories: I Am Grimalkin (2011)
The Spook's Battle:
'. . . ideal for the reader who has outgrown Harry Potter. Be warned, these books are seriously scary . . . Beautifully produced and consistently surprising the weird and wonderful Wardstone Chronicles are an annual treat.' Amanda Craig
The Spook's Apprentice:
'Teenage readers looking instead for total fantasy should hasten to Joseph Delaney's The Spook's Apprentice' The Independent
Praise for The Wardstone Chronicles:
"The Wardstone Chronicles remain one of the strongest ongoing series of the moment" Write Away!