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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The world of the Spook and his apprentice is getting darker
THE SPOOK'S BATTLE is the fourth book in Delaney's Wardstone series. Each book has been fantastic, adding to the whole world and story that Delaney has created. THE SPOOK'S BATTLE was no exception, in fact it could be argued to be one of the best so far.

Tom Ward is the seventh son of a seventh son, apprenticed out to a Spook - someone who deals with the Dark;...
Published on 15 July 2007 by Brida

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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Spook's Battle: A Winner? Maybe Not
I keep trying to really like the Wardstone Series, but every time I finish one I'm sure I won't bother with another. I have actually read them all, at least to this one. The world that Delaney creates/recreates is potentially great fun, exciting and interesting. The same for the characters. But I always end up feeling disappointed. The problem is, unfortunately, the...
Published on 19 April 2008 by P. Cross


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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The world of the Spook and his apprentice is getting darker, 15 July 2007
By 
Brida "izumi" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
THE SPOOK'S BATTLE is the fourth book in Delaney's Wardstone series. Each book has been fantastic, adding to the whole world and story that Delaney has created. THE SPOOK'S BATTLE was no exception, in fact it could be argued to be one of the best so far.

Tom Ward is the seventh son of a seventh son, apprenticed out to a Spook - someone who deals with the Dark; boggarts, witches, ghosts and ghasts. The path Tom is taking is not an easy one; people fear the Spook and his trade because of the terrors that they have to face. Yet Tom knows that his mother wanted for him to become the next apprentice, and so he feels that it is his proper calling.

In this installment, Tom is told by the Spook that the 3 witch clans of Pendle are becoming more dangerous. Usually the 3 witch clans are at each others throats, only ever coming together in extreme circumstances. But there is rumour that 2 of the clans have already begun to join forces, and that the third is now in their sight. Once all three clans are joined, they mean to raise up the "dark made flesh", the Devil himself. Tom and the Spook must travel to Pendle to try and prevent this from happening.
Before they set off for Pendle, the Spook tells Tom that he must go back to his family's farm and collect the three trunks that were left for him by his mother. What is inside these trunks? Tom has had suspicions that they will contain the story of his mother before she met his father, but what secrets will they uncover? And, will Tom be able to face upto the repercussions of these secrets and what they mean for him?

I won't say anymore, as I don't want to give anything away for those who wish to read this fantastic book.
What I shall say though is that this installment definitely sets in place a very good story for the next installment. The first three books have all been creating a sense of forboding - that something big will happen to change the already dangerous world that the Spook and Tom inhabit - but THE SPOOK'S BATTLE definitely captures this sense of forboding and runs with it.

As with the other books, THE SPOOK'S BATTLE does not only consider the fight against the Dark, that Tom and the Spook have to face. Tom has to face issues surrounding who he is when he finally discovers what lies inside of his mother's trunks. And, of course, there is the charcater Alice, a niece if a witch. She really is a very well created and developed character. The Spook has never really trusted her, for this very reason, but Tom has more faith in her than his master does. But, with them travelling to Pendle, where Alice still has family, will it be too much of a temptation for her to go back to her 'wicked' ways?

This series really is fantastic. If you haven't read any of them yet, the first one is THE SPOOK'S APPRENTICE. It really is a well thought out series. Although there is not magic in the sense of what many shall know from the Harry Potter series, this is no bad thing. From the very beginning of the Wardstone Chronicles, magic is portrayed as something that is usually done for malevolent reasons, rather than for helping people. Delaney has created a world which is just as dark as the one HP finds himself in, perhaps even darker, especially at the end of this book.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Something to replace Harry Potter?, 10 July 2007
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Having been stuck in an airport for several hours a couple of years ago, I stumbled across the first in this series of book that deal with the 'adventures' of Tom Ward. A young boy who is apprenticed to a Spook.

This is the fourth in the series and is arguably the best yet. There is a lot of fast paced action, with wonderful narratives and colourful descriptions. Delaney certainly has a way of lifting the characters out of the page.

It was a long year waiting for this one to come out, I can see it being an even longer wait for the next book. Some of the hints at the end of this book foretell some great episodes in this series to come.

Shorter than the Harry Potter books, this series is a lot more accessible to people with a shorter attention span. Note that I did not say a younger audience, as some of the situations could be scary for an advanced writing age younger person, however teenagers and adults will really appreciate the shade and tone in the writing.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Rattling good read, 13 Sep 2008
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My son loved this book, and the minute he had finished it said, 'Can we get the rest?'
One cautionary note - it is quite dark in places, with some pretty gruesome imagery - probably why my son enjoyed it so much! - but I would say it's for twelves and up as it does deal with some serious moral questions.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thrills All Round!, 27 May 2010
A Kid's Review
This is a great book. It has everything: A second witch vowing that she will own Tom one day instead of Alice, A witch conspiracy and one of the witch coven leaders hiding a monster called Tibb under her dresses! Truly Amazing!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review, 19 Aug 2007
I found this book to be very interesing and very well written!!
I have grown fond of his books and other horror stories!
This books gives you a thrill of exciting experinces and hope it does the same for you!!
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4.0 out of 5 stars the Spooks battle book 4, 28 April 2014
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Enjoyed the book had to finished it could not put down good work by author lots of tension right to end
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great story!, 21 April 2014
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A good story, with well described areas and characters (also for some reason the food, i was very hungry after this (but i couldn't stop reading!!))
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing, 7 Mar 2014
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I simply couldn't put it down! I was concentrating on it so much I finished it in a few days!
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5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic, 5 Feb 2014
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I love this book. It is just as exciting and well written as the others. If you enjoyed the previous books in the series then you will definitely enjoy this one too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars EPIC, 3 Dec 2013
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I seriously can't wait to got the next book! This could easily be made into a film! And it should be!
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