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"I was going to learn how to protect farms and villages from things that go bump in the night. Dealing with ghouls, boggarts, and all manner of wicked beasties would be all in a day's work. That's what the Spook did, and I was going to be his apprentice." Twelve-year-old Thomas Ward, as the seventh son of a seventh son, has no inheritance and is bored with farm work, and even though his new job will mean the superstitious villagers will forever shun him, he is eager to go off to adventure with the tall, hooded man he calls the Spook. His mother, a magical person herself, approves, and the Spook's teaching is strict but kind. But when Tom has only learned enough to be able to control their house-boggart, he is tricked by Alice, the young daughter of a witch family, into inadvertently releasing and then killing Mother Malkin, a witch the Spook has imprisoned in a pit. This is no polite wicca-type witch, but a snuffling, slime-trailing, cannibalistic creature reminiscent of Tolkien's nasgils. The story of Tom's escape from the reincarnated witch's hideous revenge is full of horrible details, as Alice helps, and then once again betrays him. This well-crafted novel marks an auspicious start for an exciting and fast series for young teens. (Ages 10-14) --Patty Campbell --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Grade 5-8–When 12-year-old Thomas, seventh son of a seventh son, is apprenticed to the local Spook, whose job is to fight evil spirits and witches, he expects a life of danger. However, the boy doesn't realize just how soon he'll face a powerful enemy alone, as Mother Malkin escapes her confinement while the Spook is away. Thomas is forced to use his wits, and the help of his enigmatic new friend, Alice, to fight the evil witch. And defeating her is only the start of the boy's problems. Delaney's characters are clearly presented and have realistic depth, and Thomas's mother and Alice stand out for their strong words and actions. The protagonist's voice is clear, and his conflicts over his actions ring true. This first entry in a proposed series is an excellent choice for readers who are looking for a more sophisticated alternative to R. L. Stine's Goosebumps books (Scholastic), and the pacing and edgy illustrations at the start of each chapter will appeal to reluctant readers. Delaney's rural, quasi-medieval world is populated by a variety of magic creatures, and readers will look forward to discovering more of them, along with Thomas, as the series continues. A solid choice, particularly for middle school boys.–Beth L. Meister, Pleasant View Elementary School, Franklin, WI
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Witches, boggarts and girls with pointy shoes. Joseph Delaneys masterpiece is not only well written but the morals are well taught. Read morePublished 12 days ago by Sheridan
This was my introduction to the world created by Joseph Delaney. I enjoyed the book while having to remind myself a few times that the hero of the story is a 13 year old boy. Read morePublished 21 days ago by J. Jarocki
I'm 13 and I LOVE this book, it is creepy at times but it's nothing too intense.(unless you have a vivid imagination) There is a part having to do with possession but again NOT too... Read morePublished 29 days ago by dana bryant
Kind of disappointed in the quality of this book. The story itself is great, and I got the book on time as promised, but the binding is ready to break lose unless I tape it which I... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Brenda G. Potash
I loved the series! My book was slightly damaged during shipping but other than that shipping was fast.Published 1 month ago by Madeline McCarron
Well, no doubt about it, it's a young teen/childrens novel. It's well written, fast paced, and easy to read. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Just a right amount of fun and fantasy in a small package. Looking forward to reading more in the seriesPublished 1 month ago by Grady Pearson
Very good book for the its reading level. I am very interested in reading the series.Published 1 month ago by W. E. Thompson
Thoroughly enjoyed the book. Fascinating characters and interesting storyline. Looking forward to reading the next book in the series. Awesome!Published 2 months ago by Kindle Customer