Revenge of the Witch (The Last Apprentice #1)

 
4.0
 
3.0 (3)
1398 1
Revenge of the Witch (The Last Apprentice #1)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
September 06, 2005
ISBN
9780060766184
Buy This Book
      
Capturing witchesBinding boggartsDriving away ghostsFor years, Old Gregory has been the Spook for the county, ridding the local villages of evil. Now his time is coming to an end. But who will take over for him? Twenty-nine apprentices have tried-some floundered, some fled, some failed to stay alive.

Only Thomas Ward is left. He's the last hope; the last apprentice.

Can Thomas succeed? Will he learn the difference between a benign witch and a malevolent one? Does the Spook's warning against girls with pointy shoes include Alice? And what will happen if Thomas accidentally frees Mother Malkin, the most evil witch in the county ... ?

Editor reviews

1 reviews

English Folklore Galore
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
A mature middle-grade fantasy—sporting a medieval feel and steeped in an eerie English folklore ambiance which, at times, drifts over the line into horror.

The story is told exclusively in the first-person past tense perspective of Tom Ward, the latest (and allegedly last) apprentice to the local “Spook.” Tom’s heritage and precise birth order (7th son of a 7th son) have qualified him as a banisher of things that go bump in the night. But Tom is a kind-natured, naive boy. And he has an awful lot of growing to do if he’s to survive his apprenticeship…

A gothic, paranormal sort of work that should appeal well enough to the entire range of a YA audience—despite the MC’s technical age. The prose is simple yet strong, and the telling is engaging. Delany has constructed a dreary, dangerous world and a sympathetically innocent character with which readers must navigate. Themes of friendship, honesty, courage, resourcefulness, and the extending of grace, all feature prominently.

Content Note:The horror aspects, though relatively brief, may be too intense for a younger MG audience. While not gory or gratuitous in any way, there ARE references to horrific violence committed against women and the brutal murder of small children. I’d advise a 12+ rating.

My biggest qualm regarding the plot centers around Tom’s mother. The woman obviously has some preternatural inclinations—prophesy being among her curiously innate abilities. She knows from the time of Tom’s birth what he will become. Indeed, she indicates to Tom’s master that she bore him specifically to serve that purpose. Yet, she’s apparently done nothing to ready Tom for any of the dangers and horrors she knows he will have to face. One would think a loving mother might have wanted to increase his odds of survival with a little advanced education. But, no. She’s sent a clueless adolescent boy off with no advantages outside of those that may lie hidden in his as-yet-indeterminate bloodline. That aspect became the biggest challenge to suspending my disbelief. (In all honesty, I doubt this is anything a younger audience would notice or be bothered by.)

A prime pick for those in the YA range looking for something darker, that still manages to leave much to the imagination. I’ll be glad to try out book 2 and see where the author seems to be taking this rather prolific series.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

User reviews

3 reviews

Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0  (3)
Characters 
 
N/A  (0)
Writing Style 
 
N/A  (0)
Already have an account? or Create an account
easy reading
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Dancerdork

A quick moving fantasy for the younger teens. Its about a young boy taking up the last job any one wants. the job of a spook. he seems to be to sweet and weak for the job but quickly proves everyone wrong. you wont want to put it down and find yourself reading over 100 pages a day. its very good cheap.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Very...
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by EshInoBi

This book was VERY, very, boring at the beginning. I don't mean to exaggerate, but it's not the book that'll capture your attention quickly. But, of course because of it's interesting-ness coming, I learned to come to love it. Thomas Ward is the 30th apprentice of John Gregory, the County's 'Spook'. The trade of being a Spook is helping other people ward away the dark. In this book, Tom is mixed with witches, because some are malevolent or benign, and he learns to trust a witch and become friends with her. This was quite interesting at around the middle, but the beginning did not capture my interest. Had I no other book to read, I would've stopped. But, because of this extraordinary book, I continued and am looking forward to reading the rest of the books in the series. It wasn`t actually that scary =P
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Spooky and Not All That Absorbing
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by TheBookworm

Spooky and Not All That Absorbing

Revenge of the Witch by Joseph Delaney
3 out of 5 stars

Revenge of the Witch Book One in The Last Apprentice series by Joseph Delaney was good in its own way.

Tom Wards time has finally come. Its his turn to find a trade. Except his father has run out of favors, but that is to be expected. It was a miracle that he even found jobs for his six eldest sons. What trade could a seventh son of a seventh son do? Toms Mam, of course, has the answer. The next day the Spook Old Gregory stops by and what do you know? Tom Ward is the new Spook apprentice. But Tom isnt excited.

A Spook daily deals with boggarts, ghosts, ghasts, and witches. While in the dark remind you. Must travel on foot. Also they eat very little while they are doing this traveling. A Spook is faced with do or die situations at every turn. AND not to mention the life of a Spook is a lonely one. Everyone is scared and frightened by what they do, even though it is to protect them from the Dark. But Tom Ward doesnt have time to think about loneliness, right now he is just trying to stay alive.

The layout and choice of words was almost flawless. The chapters were manageable sizes and also understandable. I was able to follow along with the storyline without getting confused.

It was well written. But it just didnt grab me. I wanted and did finish the book, but I didnt feel any connection with the characters. No special interest in them besides wondering if they would live or not. It was a book that I will remember for maybe a month, but it was nothing that I will remember or cherish for months to come.

The Last Apprentice was really just a darker version of Septimus Heap.

Date Reviewed: August 8th, 2008
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

The Small Crimes of Tiffany Templeton
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Serpent King meets Girl in Pieces in this moving...
A Sprinkle of Spirits (Love Sugar Magic, #2)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Leonora Logroño has finally been introduced to her family’s bakery...
The Order of Time
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
“If you’re into secret societies, time-travel, dangerous artifacts, deadly assassins,...
Thomas Edison
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Learn about the life of Thomas Edison in this early...
Pete the Cat: 5-Minute Bedtime Stories: Includes 12 Cozy Stories!
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Join Pete the Cat for 12 groovy, cozy stories perfect...
Sabina: In the Eye of the Storm
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
As in Anne Frank's "Diary of a Young Girl" and...
Literally: Amazing Words and Where They Come From
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A stunning non-fiction picture book about the origins of the...
Ty's Travels: All Aboard!
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Join Ty on his imaginative adventures in Ty's Travels: All...
Cuddle Close, Little Koala
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A reassuring bedtime story about the special bond between a...
We Are Together
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
The power of love and friendship is celebrated in this...
Rage and Ruin (The Harbinger, #2)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Half-angel Trinity and her bonded gargoyle protector, Zayne, have been...
Diamond City (Diamond City, #1)
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
"A thrilling adventure, through a vibrant city as alive as...
Shadow of the Batgirl
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Cassandra Cain, teenage assassin, isn't exactly Batgirl material...yet. Will she...
Of Ice and Shadows
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
The long-awaited sequel to Of Fire and Stars—in which Mare...
Agnes at the End of the World
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Handmaid's Tale meets Wilder Girls in this genre-defying novel...
My Love is All Around
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
Mommy Bear shows Baby Bear how love is all around...

Latest Member Reviews

A Sprinkle of Spirits (Love Sugar Magic, #2)
 
5.0
"A SPRINKLE OF SPIRITS is the delightful second book in the LOVE SUGAR MAGIC middle grade series. Leo is a..."
The Order of Time
 
3.0
"THE ORDER OF TIME by Scott P. Southall is a Middle Grade Sci-Fi Fantasy novel. The story follows two twins,..."
Pete the Cat: 5-Minute Bedtime Stories: Includes 12 Cozy Stories!
 
5.0
"'Pete the Cat 5-Minute Bedtime Stories' by Kimberly and James Dean is an adorable storybook that any lover of children's..."
Ty's Travels: All Aboard!
 
5.0
"'Ty's Travels: All Aboard!' by Kelly Starling Lyons, pictures by Nina Mata, is an adorable story of Ty and his..."
Cuddle Close, Little Koala
 
4.0
"CUDDLE CLOSE, LITTLE KOALA is a sweet story of the special connection between mother and child. Little Koala is lost..."
We Are Together
 
3.5
"WE ARE TOGETHER is a book about activism and teamwork. In the form of a rhyming poem, the book stresses..."
My Love is All Around
 
4.5
"MY LOVE IS ALL AROUND is a sweet book about love between parent and child and the many ways in..."
I'm not a Mouse!
 
4.0
"I'M NOT A MOUSE! is a cute picture book about nicknames. Olivia's mother always calls her mouse, and she doesn't..."
My Panda Sweater
 
5.0
"MY PANDA SWEATER is a lovely book about the way that clothes can affect us. A young girl loves her..."
One Day on our Blue Planet... In the Outback
 
4.0
"ONE DAY ON OUR BLUE PLANET... IN THE OUTBACK is a picture book that follows a red kangaroo joey through..."
Mrs Bibi's Elephant
 
5.0
"MRS BIBI'S ELEPHANT is a sweet story about the special place we have in our hearts for our pets. Mrs...."
Artemis Fowl: Guide to the World of Fairies
 
4.0
""Written" by dwarf Nord Diggums with contributions from experts in the field of magical creatures such as Professor Ivana Therey..."
Super Puzzletastic Mysteries: Short Stories for Young Sleuths from Mystery Writers of America
 
5.0
"Short story collections are hard to review, especially when one includes so many fantastic authors! My students will be glad..."
Daniela and the Pirate Girls
 
3.5
"DANIELA AND THE PIRATE GIRLS is a fun high-seas adventure about helping others and making new friends. Daniela is the..."
Child of Galaxies
 
4.0
"CHILD OF GALAXIES is a lovely poem about life and the broad meaning of it all. The poem begins by..."
Shy Ones
 
5.0
"SHY ONES is a sweet look at friendship and the people (or sea creatures) who are shy. The story is..."
Once Upon an Eid
 
5.0
"This collection has a wide variety of stories about different aspects of Eid, and is particularly poignant during this time..."
Slamdown Town
 
4.0
"Ollie is in 6th grade and is small for his age. His older brother, Hollis, is in 8th, and has..."
Ragweed and Poppy
 
3.5
"RAGWEED AND POPPY is an interesting middle grade novel that follows Ragweed, a mouse who is on a journey. Ragweed..."
The Right Place
 
3.5
"THE RIGHT PLACE is a picture book that stresses the importance of friends and home. Squirrel wakes up after a..."