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Curse of the Bane (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles #2)

4.1 of 5 stars 4.10  ·  rating details  ·  13,492 ratings  ·  567 reviews
Now it's the dark's turn to be afraid

The Spook and his apprentice, Thomas Ward, deal with the dark. Together they rid the county of witches, ghosts, and boggarts. But now there's some unfinished business to attend to in Priestown. Deep in the catacombs of the cathedral lurks a creature the Spook has never been able to defeat; a force so evil that the whole county is in dan...more
Hardcover, 480 pages
Published August 29th 2006 by Greenwillow Books (first published June 30th 2005)
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Community Reviews

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Mike (the Paladin)
Let me open this with a caveat or two.

First always be sure that your children/youths are mature enough to read any YA novel, this one included. Be sure that when reading a fantasy novel especially one with a horror context that they have a good reality concept.

Second and for this novel be aware of the attitude in these books (The Wardstone Chronicles in the UK or The Spook's Apprentice books in the US) toward "the church". I'm not Roman Catholic, but am a Christian. Were my kids small, I'd have...more
[Name Redacted]
A disappointing follow-up to Delaney's excellent first novel. The heavy-handed anti-clericalism and anti-ecclesiasticism certainly didn't help, but the overall narrative also felt remarkably flat (despite a gripping opening), the characters seemed unengaging and unengaged in one another, and the "big bad" felt like an inappropriate villain for the second story in a long-running series. The Bane would have been a better fit for a later -- perhaps even final -- volume, or as a recurring villain. I...more
Faye, la Patata
This one was so irritating to read. I hated Tom Ward in this one. He was such a wussy who kept refusing to see the bigger picture, who kept disobeying his master, who kept whining about Poor Alice even if she was responsible for so many bad things due to what she did. It pissed me off how he kept justifying her actions, and how he was so willing to risk so many innocent lives due to POOR FUCKING ALICE. arghhhhhhhhh
Duffy Pratt
Perhaps the silliest title I've seen. If you don't know what I mean, I suggest you look "bane" up in the dictionary. It comes straight from the Department of Redundancy Department.

Nonetheless, I liked the book and thought it was a very good sequel to Revenge of the Witch. In most series I've encountered, the second book will expand the world and the cast of characters. Here, while we do get to see a bit more of the County, the characters remain largely the same -- Tom, the Spook, and Alice are a...more
This book wastes no time with the boring introduction and plunges us straight into the bidding of Tom's first boggart. Just like the first book, Joseph Delaney manages to evoke feelings of fear and dread on almost every page. I was really crept out by the Bane and his whispers and description. I can still picture it in my mind...

Anyway, in this book, we learn more about the characters including the Spook's involvement with two women, one being a witch! No wonder, he warns Tom to be careful of gi...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I don't normally find myself reading books about ghosts and boggarts but I just can't put these down. They are spooky, mysterious and entertaining. Thomas Ward is the seventh son of a seventh son which gives him special abilities to deal with the things that go bump in the night. He is back with Gregory and Alice to deal with The Bane, a creature that the Spook fought and lost back during his apprenticeship. After the untimely death of his brother, Tom and the Spook are forced to return to Pries...more
i think it is one of the best childrens books that i ever read in my life...a bit splatterish but it was nice....well i would recomend it only in 13 yolds and above....Anyway TSC is a great takes six months after the events of the first book and continues the story giving us new villains(the inquistor is a very scary persona),new loveable character and hollowing settings and a few counter-issues happening to the characters.Delaney is a great story teller that hates stalling in his st...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Curse of the Bane (The Last Apprentice, #2), 2005, Joseph Delaney
Characters: Mr. Gregory, Thomas J. Ward, Alice Deane
Abstract: The Spook and his apprentice, Thomas Ward, deal with the dark. Together they rid the county of witches, ghosts, and boggarts. But now there's some unfinished business to attend to in Priestown. Deep in the catacombs of the cathedral lurks a creature the Spook has never been able to defeat; a force so evil that the whole county is in danger of being corrupted by its power...more
It gets better and better each time. Presenting The Wardstone Chronicles #2 The Spook's Curse by Joseph Delaney .

Here is the summary of the book:

Now it's the dark's turn to be afraid. The Spook and his apprentice, Thomas Ward, deal with the dark. Together they rid the county of witches, ghosts, and boggarts. But now there's some unfinished business to attend to in Priestown. Deep in the catacombs of the cathedral lurks a creature the Spook has never been able to defeat; a force so evil that the...more
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My opinions about Revenge of the Witch, the first book in the series, were more likely neutral. I liked the book but has still a lot to improve. Let’s see if the second book save the first.

Curse of the Bane has more guts. Definitely, Curse of the Bane is better than the previous one. Now I get a clear idea of what the County they live in looks like. The culture – they hate priests (well, on the Spook’s side). It has more depth. It has more real dang...more
Second in The Last Apprentice series. Here, young Tom has been an apprentice to "The Spook" for about six months and is already binding boggarts all on his own. He also discovers that perhaps one of the reasons the Spook has warned Tom to be wary of all women is that he had a bit of trouble with them in his own past. When a particularly vicious boggart called a "Ripper" attacks the Spook's brother, a priest, Tom must go to him and try to bind the boggart and hopefully save the priest, whom the S...more
Lex (Fastidious Reader)
THERE MIGHT BE UNMARKED SPOILERS HERE. too lazy to edit it whole

Finally! I'm done reading it! I started it 5 days ago or more? I've been busy with something and didn't really get a chance to read it straight even though someone was nagging at me to read faster. :/

Eep! There's this time when I suddenly detested the Church. Okay, wait, that sounds like bad. I just mean, I detested the church IN THIS BOOK. Not necessarily I detested it in real life cause I don't. Well, okay, maybe just a tiny bit....more
Henrik Schunk
Oh my, the difficult second book, it is almost as if I am reviewing pop bands over here. I was a tad disspointed by the second book in the series and I sincerely hope that the third one will be on par with the debut entry in the series.

Let's see, Delaneys pragmatic, yet picturesque prose still bedazzles and entertains and the characters I came to be interested in, being Tom, the spook and Alice are up to their old tricks again but there are two major setbacks in this back, for me at least.

1. Th...more
*very minor spoilers given as an example to parents of imagery*

Time and again it's been shown that writing a second book in a series that is as good as the first is a difficult and daunting task, but Delaney just manages to pull it off. This book continues the story of Thomas Ward and his master John Gregory as they face off against the darkest creature John has ever met. Dubbed the Bane, it is a creature so vile that it corrupts and uses priests to do its dirty work. While not as in your face w...more
Kody Pinkowski
Dec 26, 2013 Kody Pinkowski rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Young Adults, Adults (men and women)
The Last Apprentice: Curse of The Bane by Joseph Delaney. In the second book of the series Thomas Ward is still traveling the County with The Spook protecting the people from creatures of the dark. Now Thomas and the Spook are traveling to Priestown because they have to stop one of the darkest and most evil creatures..... THE BANE. The bane lives in the Catacombs below Preistown and now he is plaguing the people who live in the town above and corrupting them. This isn't the Spooks first encounte...more
I love these books! They're so completely, utterly different from anything else I've read. The whole idea of the Spook and his apprentice is a really mind boggling and amazing subject. I love the fact that Thomas is already facing some really strong villains so early in the series. It can only mean that he'll encounter even more dangerous and more heinous villains in the future! Thomas is an amazing narrator that I really connect with. Despite being young, he's got a very strong and opinionated...more
Ordinary Dahlia
Buku ke-2 ini gak kalah keren dari buku 1!!

Buku ini petualangannya berasa kuat. Bagaimana tidak, di awal bab saja kita sudah disuguhi ketegangan Thomas menghadapi Ripper, sejenis boggart yang telah mengecap darah manusia. Kemudian bergulir ke Priestown untuk menyelesaikan pekerjaan yang tertunda dan hampir menewaskan sang master 20tahun silam.
Di Priestown ini terkurung The Bane, monster tanpa bentuk tetap dengan kekuatan gelap yang bisa membaca fikiran, mengendalikan dan menguasai. The Bane ini...more
I really don't like horror but I really like these books. There are a number of reviews that are off-put by the treatment of the church and priests. They have missed the point that the priests have been mind controlled by the Bane and that the Spook has a history that earned him the disrespect of his brother, the priest. That being said, the whole the good versus evil message seems to be a positive one. Like in Harry Potter, its all about the choices we make. I wouldn't recommend it to the very...more
Good, scary. Very strong anti-religion message for YA. I'd worry about it at school, but lots of my kids have already read the series. The religious people are pompous fools, or worse, possessed cruel people. The sympathetic characters are more "spiritual." The mentor actually says he doesn't believe in the guy with beard, but some good force that helps you when you need it. The books are still good, but it's off-putting in YA lit.

The dark magic--spirits drinking your blood in exchange for perfo...more
This book called The last Apprentice # 2: Curse of the Bane. Thomas Ward and the Spook go to Preistown. There's something called the Bane that gets blood from other people by begging and it works. Alice is a girl with pointed shoes, accused of being a witch, she's innocent. She just wears pointed shoes.

The Bane lives under Preistown and the Spook had challenged the Bane when he was younger. He barely lived. But, he stayed alive... Alice and the Spook went to challenge the Bane, leaving Thomas...more
Nov 22, 2012 Clint rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
Another great book in this series. It's by turns dark and childish (people are pressed flat like pancakes by some monster that lives in the catacombs under a cathedral run by evil priests), and great for kids into creepy stuff. It's funny how the author puts in things like a pointedly anti-clerical, anti-creationist sort of spin on a book that has monsters and ghosts running around all over the place. It's like, you've got some kind of ethereal vampire gargoyle dog thing terrorizing the place, b...more
Sarah's Reviews
When the influence of an ancient evil threatens innocent lives – Thomas and the Spook must avoid arrest and accomplish the impossible or the dark will snuff them out.

Written with a tone and context that makes your skin crawl, Curse of the Bane draws you through its pages without supplying a single dull moment. The reader should be aware that it contains implications of prior sexual acts, sadistic material, and graphic implications of death/torture, although most of the graphic detail is left to...more
May 24, 2011 Chaz added it
i read this book at home, i liked the whole story of this book. i enjoyed the story of how all of these conflicts get in the way of him and his family, or any of his social life. with the training he goes through, you can tell that the spook was and still likes to teach and learn things the old harder way. its was a plausible way of the spook to let him do some of these missions alone. and towards the end when he let him go and do this even bigger and deadlier mission to deal with the bane. this...more
I read the first book in this series a few years ago, and found it to be a fun read, but then I guess wasn't quite motivated to pick up the second, though I always intended to do so. Recently, Bennett's been becoming more and more of a reader, so I was trying to think of books for him to read, and I thought of these; I knew the horror element would interest him---he's really enjoying the series. Bennett reading it got me reading the series again as well. I really enjoyed this book, probably a bi...more
I was torn about how to rate this book because normally when I give a book two stars it means I really didn't like it that much, and this book isn't as bad as most twos I've given. That said, it also wasn't as good as the first one, and I gave that one a three. So I'm giving this a two purely based on comparison to the first book, if that makes sense. I guess what I'm saying is take this rating with a little grain of salt.

Anyway, on to the actual review. This book doesn't have quite the same ur...more
Jorge Martinez
Its been 6 months since Tom started his apprenticeship as a spook. In the begining of the book Tom is dealing with one of the most dangerous type of boggart a riper. Tom is doing this alone because the spook is badly ill.

The steps for putting a boggart in a pit are, first gig a pit. Second get a stone, third bind a boggart with a silver chain. Last take the boggart to the pit land the stone to cover up the pit so the boggart.
Michelle E. Kobus ♡ HAPPY HALLOWEEN! ♥
As another reviewer stated, the anti-clerical/religion statment was very heavy-handed and poorly done. I don't mind books that deal with lack of belief or corrupt clerics at all, if it's done in a way to make you think beyond your present beliefs; this book doesn't do that. It just voices an opinion without anything to mull over afterwards.

Still, in spite of this, it was a decent story, if not quite so spooky as the first book.
Rosie Amber
The second book in the Wardstone series sees the continuation of Tom Ward's apprenticeship as a County Spook. With only a few months training under his belt he must tackle the most dangerous type of Boggart, a Ripper alone, while the Spook lies on his bed ill.

Although the Boggart was bound, sadly it's victim died and Tom and the Spook head to Priestown for the funeral. There's more than one danger in the town for the Spook and while he tries to rid the town of the dangerous Bane that lives down...more
This series is like no other I have found so far - Delaney sets up a language and a world reminiscent of feudal society. I do like this series but it does not capture me like other wonderful series - it is a bit darker and I have hard time seeing it as a children's series. The mythology of this world never offers cuddly monsters or beautiful supernaturals, no rather it is the lore of old where witches have warts and monsters eat babies. Evil exists and there are those that battle against it. The...more
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Joseph Delaney is a full time writer living in Lancashire, in the heart of Boggart territory. He first got the idea for the Wardstone Chronicles series when he moved to the village where he lives now and discovered there was a local boggart - ‘a man like me needs boggarts around’. He made a note in his notebook ‘a story about a man who hunts boggarts’ and years later when he had to come up with an...more
More about Joseph Delaney...
Revenge of the Witch (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles, #1) Night of the Soul Stealer (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles, #3) Attack of the Fiend (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles, #4) The Spook's Mistake (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles, #5) Rise of the Huntress (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles, #7)

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“Now it's the dark's turn to be afraid.” 90 likes
“The first step towards knowledge is to accept your own ignorance.” 62 likes
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