Joseph Delaney

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 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!

December 18th 2008 interview with Joseph Delaney

The Wardstone Chronicles began in 2004 with the publication of The Spook's Apprentice. In 2008 the fifth book in the series, The Spook's Mistake, was released to further complement a series that is without doubt the best ongoing fantasy series for young adults. Set in locations based on r [...]

Read interview

Joseph Delaney reviews

The Spook's Tale

The Wardstone Chronicles written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 8.4 | 1 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Stories: Witches

The Wardstone Chronicles written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 2009

Our rating: 9.0 | 1 positive reader reviews

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I Am Grimalkin

The Wardstone Chronicles written by Joseph Delaney

'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 [...]

Published: 2014

Our rating: 9.0 | 2 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Apprentice

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 1 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 2004

Our rating: 10.0 | 19 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Blood

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 10 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 2004

Our rating: 9.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Slither's Tale

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 11 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 6.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Spooks: Alice

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 12 written by Joseph Delaney

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... [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 8.8 | 0 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Curse

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 2 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 2004

Our rating: 9.0 | 5 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Secret

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 3 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 2006

Our rating: 9.0 | 2 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Battle

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 4 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 2005

Our rating: 9.0 | 1 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Mistake

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 5 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 2008

Our rating: 9.5 | 1 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Sacrifice

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 6 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 8.5 | 4 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Nightmare

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 7 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 8.7 | 2 positive reader reviews

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The Spook's Destiny

The Wardstone Chronicles: Book 8 written by Joseph Delaney

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 [...]

Published: 2011

Our rating: 8.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

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