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The Spooks Apprentice (2008)

by Joseph Delaney(Favorite Author)
3.65 of 5 Votes: 6
The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles
review 1: Interesting, if unremarkable, little book about a young lad apprenticed to the Spook. The Spook is a sort of Buffy Summers that protects mankind for little or no reward. The writing is extremely basic, so basic that it was in fact too easy to read at first. I had to sort of temporarily adjust my reading level to enjoy it. The nature of the story is surprisingly dark for writing that seems so directed at beginner or very young readers. This would have been too easy and yet too dark for me even in 3rd grade. Perhaps it was that juxtaposition that threw me off for a while.Once I got the hang of the elementary writing style, it was much more fun. I liked the rather poignant passages in which the reader learns how the Spook is treated. The villagers absolutely rely on h... moreis services, yet can't be bothered to befriend him. Some of the imagery is downright frightening, such as murdered babies and dead soldiers. For all of the darkness, I got a little perturbed at the Spook and Thomas' pacifist stance on capital punishment. So writing about eating young women who only so-called crime was having children out of wedlock is okay, but killing off the evil witch that murdered those poor girls is going too far?I may keep reading the series, or I might not. They are quick and easy reads but I'd rather spend my time rereading the Oz series.
review 2: I read this book out of curiosity. Having seen Universal/Legendary's "The Seventh Son", I wanted to read the book that inspired the studio to take a risk on the film. The movie horribly miscast several key characters, and lacked good production design and proper plotting, but still, it is a big budget fantasy from a major released in 2015. So I was intrigued. Perhaps the book far outshines the movie, as is often the case.Sadly, that is, in fact, not the case here. Like the much better "How to Train Your Dragon" film franchise, Seventh Son is only very loosely based on the book, and turns what I think Delaney means to be a spooky throwback novel into a high fantasy ala LOTR. The movie didn't work in the vein. And I'm afraid the book fares no better. There is a good idea there, a tasty little kernel of a spooky, semi-gothic premise (hence the two stars). But Delaney's no-nonsense, non-descriptive, rather plodding first person narrative drives all atmosphere out of the tale faster that Mr. Gregory can bury a witch. I can't recommend this book to any but the youngest of chapter book readers, and then only if they are abnormally sensitive to the mention of witches and ghosts. Otherwise no goose bumps or hair-on-the-back-of-the-neck will rise here. less
Reviews (see all)
Light reading but enjoyable! Great start to a series!
Great book! A little Harry Potter feel to it.
This book really scared the 11 years old me.
LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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