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on 25 April 2017
My niece loves this series
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on 3 April 2017
I enjoy this auther writing
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on 7 November 2014
Bit different from the rest of the books in the series but still a book that's hard to put down when you start to read
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When I opened the Amazon packaging I thought that I had purchased the wrong book as there was no mention of the Spook on the front cover. Turns out, I was wrong although this book isn't about the Spook, Tom or Alice and the County. Instead, it is about a blood eating creature called Slither who comes from a land faraway (I think possibly somewhere near the Arctic Circle). He is a Kobalos Mage whose people come from a place called Valkarky.

He has chosen to live alone and although he uses the local humans as food, he has made a bargain with a local farmer that he will not touch the farmer's daughters in return for the farmer letting him have a cup of bullock blood whenever he wants it. The farmer has also made another trade with Slither and that is that when he dies, Slither can have his eldest daughter Nessa but take the other sisters to their Uncle and Aunt. The farmer is gored to death by his bull and then begins the strange story of Slither, Nessa and her two sisters, Bryony and Susan.

This is more of a stand alone book but I have a feeling that we will be hearing more about Slither in further books. I was pleased that Grimalkin the Witch Assassin put in an appearance and what's more, she helps Slither out of a potentially deadly situation.

As per usual with Joseph Delaney's books there is a fair amount of blood and gore and strange creatures but somehow I couldn't get to like this book as much as I do the stories of the Spook et al.
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on 14 July 2013
I was expecting a continuation of the saga leading to the ultimate destruction of the Fiend.
I believe Delaney misled the reader into buying a supplementary book under false pretenses, by keeping the word 'spook's' on the front cover. Delaney should have made it clearer that this was a book that had no connection with the thread of the other 10. I do not consider the presence of Grimalkin a sufficient connection to maintain relevance to the Spook's apprentice's adventures and Fiend's destruction plots.

I also resented the attempt to make me identify from the start with a very dark character who needs animal or human blood to survive, a parasite in other words. ( the book is written in the first person from the perspective of Slither)

With Grimalkin and Alice, there is a very clear moral code, a struggle with their dark nature, an attempt to redeem their darker side by destroying the fiend. neither of them drinks blood as a rule, and Grimalkin only removes thumb bones once she has killed her opponent, one is led to believe, reading between the lines.

I only read the first couple of chapters as I did not want to be drawn so deeply into the inner world of a truly dark creature from the inside. I felt polluted by it, and wanted to throw it away/ hide it, unlike the others in the series, where I could keep a safe boundary between the dark and the light. I did not want to sympathise with such a dark creature in such an intimate/ personal way.
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A whole new tale in the world of the Spooks and one that was not only refreshing but one that I had a lot of fun with. Whilst our usual heroes didn't raise their heads in this title, an old friend does and through her we get to see a world far to the north of the County in a new light as things that go bump and how they're handled differs.

It's a very cunning tale, wonderfully written with a whole rich new myth set for the author to play with. Add to this a lead antihero character that seeks to do right by a bargain as well as maintaining his own standard of honour and it's a tale that really does keep you glued from start to finish. Add to the mix cracking prose, a great understanding of pace and of course enough action to keep you more than happy. Great stuff all in.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 18 November 2012
SLITHER'S TALE is a bit of a detraction from the usual world we associate with the Spook. If you buy this expecting Tom, Alice and the Spook to make an appearance, you'll be disappointed. This means that you do not have to read this installment in order to keep up with the story; SLITHER'S TALE could be read as a stand-alone book.

The basic synopsis is that Slither, a brand new creature to Delaney's world, is given the life of a farmer's eldest daughter, Nessa, when he passes away. The farmer's condition states that Slither has to excort Nessa's two younger siblings to their aunt's house. Once he has done that, Slither is able to do what he wants with Nessa. But, along the way they face danger from different foes. So, master and possession have to work together in order to reach their destination.

That is a very brief synopsis. Slither is an interesting new character - his world is very different to the world of the Spook and this book provides a detailed insight into this new world. Slither's traditions, beliefs and values are closely examined. And, once again, you get the impression that here there is a creature of the dark but one who has complexities to his psychology and his behaviour. There is also the suggestion that we may see more of him in the future - if this is the case, it would definitely be interesting to see how he fits into the County that we know.

I would certainly recommend this book. Presumably, the majority of readers will be those who have read the prequels, but as mentioned, you could certainly read this on its own.
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on 14 December 2014
Despite this book not being about Tom, Alice or the Spook himself, I have to say that I enjoyed it more than I have enjoyed possibly every other book in the series. Don't get me wrong, the county never fails to provide a new, interesting enemy of the spook and his apprentice, the brand new world of the Kobalos, where spooks do not exist, humans are slaves and a whole different batch of gods are worshipped, sparked my intrigue.
Slither's tale is one of mystery, drama and conflicting moralities. By the end of the first chapter, you seem to have accepted Slither as an anti hero you can root for. Had he been a character in your average spook book, he would most definitely be presented as a villain, someone for Tom to have to overcome in his attempts to vanquish the dark. However, once you've begun to like Slither, you begin to accept his emotion-banishing and gruesome ways. This book is an important entry into the series and hints majorly to the chilling future of the books, with A New Darkness.
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on 3 June 2013
I really enjoyed this book. It had loads of suspense and action, it also had surprises and even a hint of romance. We meet lots of new characters here but we also see some old characters we have met before. It was really exciting and I loved it. Beautifully written and a great storyline. I recommend this book!
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on 24 June 2013
I love the Spooks stories, totally love them and so far I have liked all the breakaway books like I am Grimalkin and the Witches tales but this one? I struggled. I think the biggest problem was that I didn't know this character. By the time Grimalkin had her own book we were very familiar with her and she was playing an essential role in the plan (which I won't give away in case you're a bit behind!) but Slither? Where does he fit in? I'm guessing there's a point that I will get later but for now I just didn't get it. I didn't like him, the story was...alright and thankfully Grimalkin did eventually turn up but there was so much to take in and all I kept thinking was what's Tom up to?! You have to read it as it's part of the series but race through it and wait with bated breath for the next one in the series!
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