The Spook's Tale by Joseph Delaney


Dare you face the dark?

'How would you like to train as a spook?
I need a brave lad for my line of work…'

The Spook keeps the County safe from creatures of the dark; things that suck your blood and snatch your bones and squeeze the breath from your body. When young John Gregory stumbles into the trap set by a powerful witch, it seems he may possess some spook's skill of his own. But is he ready to face the dark or will his first fight be his last?

The Wardstone Chronicles are a wonderful series of young-adult fantasy books that began in 2004 with the publication of The Spook's Apprentice. 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 Spook's Tale was specially written and published for World Book Day 2009 and provides a fascinating and chilling account of John Gregory, the titular figure from the popular Spook's series. The style stays true to the existing series, the only difference being that the first person narrative is now told from the perspective of John Gregory rather than Thomas Ward. The beautifully drawn illustrations that decorate the first page of each chapter are thankfully also in place for this sixty-two page tale.

This a great addition to the series, an excellent introduction for those new to the series and an intriguing insight to the Spook's past-life for those who are, like me, already addicted to these dark and immensely enjoyable books.

The Spook's Tale is an essential buy, both for the reading pleasure it gives and the money it raises for charity. Go out and buy it today for only £1*.

“To my horror, the witch pulled a knife from the pocket of her black gown. It had a long sharp blade and she held it out, moving towards me purposefully. Was she going to take some of my bones? She held the knife above my head and suddenly grasped me very tightly by my hair, twisting my head backwards. She was going to kill me!”
The Spook's Tale: The Witch's Lair


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.

World Book Day in the UK and Ireland is made possible by generous sponsorship from National Book Tokens, participating publishers, authors and booksellers. Booksellers who accept the £1 World Book Day Token kindly agree to bear the full cost of redeeming it.

* The Spook's Tale makes up half of a flip-book, Mark Walden's interception point is on the other side (58 pages).

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1 positive reader review(s) for The Spook's Tale

All reviews for Joseph Delaney's The Wardstone Chronicles series

The Spook's Tale
The Wardstone Chronicles

The Spook keeps the County safe from creatures of the dark; things that suck your blood and snatch your bones and squeeze the breath from your body. When young John Gregory [...]

The Spook's Stories: Witches
The Wardstone Chronicles

For years, the local Spook has been keeping the County safe from ghosts and boggarts, but more especially from witches. The Spook’s Stories: Witches features stories [...]

I Am Grimalkin
The Wardstone Chronicles

'I am Grimalkin, and I have already chosen those I will kill…'Grimalkin has made it her lifetime ambition to destroy the Fiend, avenging the brutal mu [...]

The Spook's Apprentice
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 1

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 h [...]

The Spook's Blood
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 10

Having bound the Fiend's spirit temporarily, Tom now has to come up with a permanent solution - and quickly. But the forces of the dark are now throwing everything they [...]

Slither's Tale
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 11

Slither is a haizda mage who preys upon humans, drinking their blood to feed his dark urges. So when a local farmer dies, it's only natural that Slither should want to [...]

Spooks: Alice
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 12

A lot of dark stuff happened when I was young that I’ve never even told to my dearest friend, Tom Ward. Dark and scary things I hoped I had left behind forever... [...]

The Spook's Curse
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 2

The Spook and his apprentice, Thomas Ward, have travelled to Priestown to defeat the Bane, a powerful, evil creature that lurks in the catacombs of the cathedral and is cor [...]

The Spook's Secret
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 3

As the weather gets colder, the Spook announces that it’s time to move to his winter house on Anglezarke – a bleak, forbidding place, close to the dark with a d [...]

The Spook's Battle
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 4

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 [...]

The Spook's Mistake
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 5

As danger increases in the Country, Tom is sent north by his master to be trained by Bill Arkwright, another spook. Arkwright lives in a haunted mill on the edge if a treac [...]

The Spook's Sacrifice
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 6

As the Spook’s apprentice, Tom’s first duty is to protect the County from the dark. But now Mam needs his help in her homeland of Greece. One of the most danger [...]

The Spook's Nightmare
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 7

The Spook, Tom and Alice return from Greece to find the County under siege - and the Spook's home is burnt to the ground. With his precious library of knowledge destroy [...]

The Spook's Destiny
The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 8

The Spook, Tom and Alice travel to Ireland, fleeing from the war in the County. There, Tom must tackle a group of evil mages who are desperate to rid their land of the Spoo [...]


The Spook's Tale reader reviews

from Cardiff

I'm really into paranormal activity and am reading 'The Spook's Tale'. It has helped me with my paranormal activity research. Just to ask... Is the story real or not? (Hi Kathryn, the Spook's books are not based on real events as such but local legend and lore play a large part in proceedings so you could say that the events might well have happened upon a time! I interview the author in 2008 - - it might interest you and help you further. All the best with your studies, Lee @ Fantasy Book Review)

from Middlesborough

The Spook's Tale is an entertaining novella and a great entry point for any thinking of reading The Wardstone Chronicles. Find out how the John Gregory himself became a spook by reading this little cracker, which was only 1 and published in support of World Book Day. A must for any Spook's fan.

6.8/10 from 3 reviews

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