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Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars

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on 6 March 2017
My son is very sporty but also loves books, especially scary ones. This one was one of the God ones. He said 4 but I say 5
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on 20 December 2008
Chris Priestley has definitely done it again with this second collection of spine-tingling tales.

This time we are introduced to Ethan and Cathy, two young children who live with their father in the Old Inn, a spooky pub precariously perched on a cliff top. During a violent storm, Ethan and Cathy are struck down by a mysterious illness, requiring their father to leave them alone in the dead of night to go in search of the local doctor. Following his departure, Jonah Thackeray arrives on the doorstep of the Old Inn, asking for shelter from the storm and offering many a creepy story in return.

This book will have you hooked from start to finish, with many twists and turns to have you shrieking in anticipation and surprise. With each chapter a complete short story in its own rights, it is perfect for bed-time stories, although you will be eagerly reading ahead to learn more about the underlying story concerning Ethan and Cathy. I found myself getting goose pimples from the eerie atmosphere so wonderfully created by Priestly and strengthened by the terrific illustrations of David Roberts. I assure you, you will not be disappointed with this book.
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on 30 May 2009
This is Chris Priestley's second book to feature 11 connected spine chilling tales of terror, the stories are all short and very easily accessible.

The Old Inn clings to a cliff top above a storm lashed ocean and Ethan & Cathy are sick, their father has gone to fetch a doctor, leaving them all alone but with the promise not to let any one in until he gets back.

When a visitor comes begging for shelter from the wild storm, Cathy takes pity on him. The children have an unnatural appetite for stories of the macabre and the visitor is persuaded the tell a series of blood-curdling stories full of horror and heart-stopping revelations.

What made the first book 'Uncle Montague's Tales of Terror,' so successful is repeated here. The stories are beautifully illustrated by David Roberts and for me it just made this book such a treasure to hold and read.

All the stories are linked together and the last story gives you an unexpected twist.

It's not hard to see that the stories are influenced by Edgar Allen Poe, M R James and even Tim Burton.

Really gripping stories, full of nightmare and macabre horrors. For fans of Poe, James and Tim Burton, this is a must read!
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on 18 August 2009
Another excellent collection of stories by Chris Priestley, with illustrations by David Roberts. I really enjoyed 'Tales of Terror from the Black Ship', a wonderful collection of stories from the sea with a twist at the end. A joy to read.
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on 13 November 2016
A brilliant collection of short stories all based around the sea. Perfect for adults or children.
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on 30 March 2017
Grandstand finish for a grand book. Great creepy book. Highly recomended
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VINE VOICEon 7 July 2011
Ethan and Cathy are two children living in an old inn, perched precariously on a cliff top. When they fall suddenly ill during a heavy storm, their father admonishes them to let nobody in, and rushes off to find a doctor. Suddenly there is a knock on the door, and Ethan taking pity on the young man standing outside, lets him in. To pass the time until their father returns, the stranger tells them some strange and terrifying sea-faring tales.

This is a collection of self-contained short stories within the larger narration concerning the children and the mysterious stranger. The atmosphere of disquiet and occasionally genuine terror conjured up by Chris Priestley is wonderful, creating a very enjoyable feeling of unease and foreboding, and his joy of storytelling is obvious. As Cathy puts it in response to one of the mysterious visitor's tales, "But I do so love to be frightened!" I have to marvel at the author's dark mind, being able to produce such spine-chilling tales, an ability he also demonstrates with his novella The Dead of Winter. The stories are enhanced by David Roberts' bleak and sinister illustrations. I'm just annoyed that the editor or publisher didn't notice that one of the illustrations at the very beginning of the book in effect gives away the twist at the end; I could still enjoy the skill of the narration but the "heart-stopping revelation" came as no surprise. I also couldn't help noticing that the illustrator pre-empts the conclusion to another of the tales, so that what was supposed to be a moment of shock had already been anticipated. I suppose that not every reader will pick up on those small details, but this will slightly mar the enjoyment of an otherwise excellent book for the keen observer. Bloomsbury have put a warning to younger readers on the back cover that this is a seriously scary book and I wholeheartedly agree; some of the tales are really quite disturbing and would not be suitable for a young readership, even I found a couple of the stories hard to stomach. Well worth re-reading again and again.
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on 12 May 2010
My then 11 yo son and I read Uncle Montague's ToT mid-2009 so were really looking forward to reading this and found it a bit of a letdown really after our first experience of Uncle Montague. The stories were good enough, giving us a bit of a fright occasionally, but there wasn't the expectation of something horrible happening or about to happen to the characters in this book than we found with our first book of his. Will certainly be buying and reading more though, and is still worth 3-stars! Maybe we were just spoiled and read the best book first, only time will tell.
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TOP 50 REVIEWERon 16 February 2013
I have read a couple of other books by this author, and found them thrillingly horrifying. While evidently written for a younger audience than me, these are great stories and I wish there had been books like this available when I was a youngster *cough cough* years ago.

Ethan and Cathy live in the Old Inn, clinging to a clifftop; their mother dead, their father not dealing with the grief and his life. One night, when they are sick, their father goes for the doctor. A strange visitor calls at the Inn, and as the night is stormy, the children let him in. Thackeray is a sailor and tells the children horrifying tales throughout the night. These tales are part of the story, but also stories within the story. For Thackeray and children are about to find the final horrors.

This is great stuff - spine-chilling, horrifying, brilliantly paced and well thought-out stories, all wrapped up in a beautifully illustrated book. Highly recommended.
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on 8 February 2010
'Tales of Terror from the Black Ship' is the story of Ethan and Cathy who live in an old inn on the coast of Cornwall. Their mother has passed on, and, while their father is away, they play host to seadog Jonah Thackeray who passes the time telling spine-chilling stories of the sea, each a complete tale in itself.
The book has eleven chapters, with titles like 'The Storm', 'The Boy in the Boat' and 'The Black Ship'.
It will appeal to any young person (or adult) who likes well told scary stories with plenty of suspense.
Following a similar format, and by the same author are 'Tales of Terror from the Tunnel's Mouth' and 'Uncle Montague's Tales of Terror', with 'The Dead of Winter' due out soon.
If you enjoyed Neil Gaiman's 'The Graveyard Book' or 'Coraline', you will probably like Chris Priestley's books as well.
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