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Ghost Knight

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  3,037 ratings  ·  480 reviews
From international phenomenon Cornelia Funke, the bestselling author of Reckless and Inkheart.

Eleven-year-old Jon Whitcroft never expected to enjoy boarding school. Then again, he never expected to be confronted by a pack of vengeful ghosts, either. And then he meets Ella, a quirky new friend with a taste for adventure...

Together, Jon and Ella must work to uncover the se
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published May 1st 2012 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (first published August 2011)
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Average rating 3.71  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,037 ratings  ·  480 reviews

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Miranda Reads
More than a bit disappointing

Funke's other books (Inkheart and Dragon Rider) are whimsical & mysterious. There's crazy-good world-building, lots of adventure and a hint of terror. So, going into this novel - I was pumped!

I should've set my expectations lower.

We follow Jon, an 10 year old boy, who's shipped off to boarding school. He's sent in part because his Mom is becoming serious with her boyfriend, "The Beard." Jon hates "The Beard" with an aching, burning passion.

His attitude is so over-t

So first and foremost, even though I of course would usually be reading Cornelia Funke’s German text (which is titled Geisterritter) and not Oliver Latsch’s English language translation, I decided to willingly eschew the German original. For since thematically and content wise, Geisterritter features a ghost-themed story about a quintessential English boy attending a typical British boarding school in Salisbury, it sure makes sense to and for me to read Ghost Kn
Oct 27, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Our hero and first person narrator is a ten year old boy whose mom has a new boyfriend, and who is being dumped in a boarding school for the first time. Once there, he is plagued by ghosts, and he meets a girl who believes in ghosts and helps him solve his problems.

The Ghost Knight, proudly proclaiming to be an English ghost story, was written by German children's author Cornelia Funke - but you'd not be able to tell that the author is not British from the book alone. I never know whether she ha
Nov 26, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a fun and cute little story.

I am so glad I got my hands on this one, Cornelia Funke has really done it again.


Jon is an eleven year old boy who is being sent away to boarding school for the first time, and he feels like it's a way for his mom to get him out of her hair. She has started dating a man who Jon calls "The Beard," a man that Jon loathes.

Once Jon arrives at the boarding school he becomes plagued by a pack of ghosts who seem bent on killing him. The thing is, no one
Mar 02, 2016 rated it did not like it
The main character proclaims he likes to swear. So far he has said "damn" as his favorite word several times. I was reading this to see if my kids should read it. I think not. Plus it's a little creepy. ...more
The kids enjoyed this tremendously more than I did. I didn't care for the angsty pre-teen narrator. Every time the story seemed to wrap up another problem/plot would be introduced and I wondered if the story was ever actually going to end. ...more
Rachel Bea
Very cute story. Loved the character of Ella.
Daisy Johnson
Please note that this review refers to the Orion edition (October 2012 - 978 1 4440 0823). You can see a picture of this edition here and I very much recommend you do take a look - the front cover is just gorgeous and the overall look is probably one of the loveliest packages I've seen for a while.

And now, down to the review!

Cornelia Funke is one of those names that needs very little introduction. She's an international standard bearer for children's literature and fantastical adventure in part
Aug 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
What begins as a boarding school story soon delves into a story about a ghost bent on revenge. Jon really doesn't like his mother's new boyfriend, so when he is sent off to boarding school it is "The Beard" that is to blame. Shortly after arriving Jon encounters four ghosts who in no uncertain terms let him know that they are out to kill him. Lucky for Jon, his new friend Ella's grandmother is a local expert on ghosts. Jon and Ella begin to unravel the mystery as to why these ghosts want to see ...more
Sarah Horgan
Jan 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
I am probably a bit biased when it comes to books by Cornelia Funke because she is one of my Favourite Authors. I am 16 years old so the way I see this book would be a bit different than the way it was meant to be perceived by the demographic.

I really did enjoy this book. I found the writing lovely, not living up to the standard of the Inkheart Trilogy's writing, but still lovely. Reading from Jon's perspective was great. He made funny comments and had a brave personality.

The Illustrations were
May 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: summer-2013
A very good book but kind of scary
Selvianty Yusuf
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Anja Fruelund
Jul 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Coming-of-age story about 11 year old Jon, who has difficulties accepting the new man in his mother's life. Things get even worse when he is shipped off to boarding school and not only has to come to grips with a new school and being away from all that is familiar, he also has to face down and old fiend that has haunted his family for generations. A ghost story full of action and Funke has a solid grip when it comes to character development. Boys and girls looking for the next read after Harry P ...more
Aug 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Jon goes to boarding school, only to discover that its location is haunted by ghosts with a personal vendetta against his family. Along the way he meets Ella, who knows all about ghosts and wants to help him, and the ghost of Longspee, an ancient knight with a shadowy past. I enjoyed this one. I don't have much else to say about it, except that it's a solid supernatural yarn in a lovely location. Once again, Funke delivers. ...more
Jan 12, 2018 rated it liked it
This book started okay, got less okay, then finished up slightly better. It got the extra star because it was researched and based off of real places and historical figures. Haunted by ghosts? Call the ghost knight! Eh.
Gladys  and the distant hours ⭐
It was good, but not great (sorry Cornelia 😬) hence the 3 ⭐ rating. But it's a very fast read, I'll give it that. ...more
Apr 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
This one melts my heart..☺️
May 17, 2012 rated it liked it
When I was younger I really liked to read fantasy books set in a medieval era. This book was an interesting blend of fantasy and contemporary that was actually pretty well done.

Reasons to Read:


Jon is one of those boys that is very misunderstood. He gets into trouble a lot for various reasons, and adults seem to instantaneously hate him. I liked that he was the narrator of the novel because then we got to see into what he was thinking, and why he did the things he does. I liked that he was
Ms. Yingling
Mar 20, 2012 rated it liked it
Jon doesn't want to go to boarding school-- he blames The Beard, his mother's boyfriend, for making him go. When he gets there, he finds out that the ghost of Stourton, who has spent generations hunting down members of Jon's family-- and now he and his ghost henchmen are coming after Jon. Luckily, Ella, a girl in his school, takes his haunting seriously, since her grandmother gives ghost tours, and the two seek the help of a dead knight, William Longspee, who is buried in Salisbury Cathedral. Th ...more
Jan 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book has restored my faith in Cornelia Funke as a writer of future classics! Ghost Knight is a delicious ghost mystery that is set in and around Salisbury Cathedral using a lot of local history and with two appealing protagonists who work brilliantly together.

I have to admit to a bias for books set in real places that use real historical characters and events. I put it down to a childhood spent reading Rosemary Manning, Alan Garner and L.M. Boston. There is nothing more exciting than readi
Naomi Schmidt
May 27, 2012 rated it liked it
Well, I finished the entire book in one day, so I must have liked it. But it is short, and the whole way through I just felt like I was trying to get to the end to get it over with. I love Cornelia Funke, and there was no way I was going to give up on a book by her before I got to the end.

I think part of my disappointment was in finding that the book, despite the lovely, medieval-looking picture on the cover, takes place in the present day. I was hoping for something similar to Igraine the Brave
Jun 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
I have waited some time for Cornelia's new novel, Ghost Knight. This follows young Jon Whitcroft as he sent off to boarding school. He has an extreme dislike for his mother's soon-to-be husband Matthew, or more commonly known as, The Beard. Not long after he arrives to his new school does he start to see several ghosts, and his later main enemy, Stourton. He also meets his heroin friend Ella Littlejohn, and her quirky, high-spirited grandmother (as well as her many toads), Zelda. These ghosts be ...more
Jul 12, 2015 rated it liked it
Maybe 2.5. I really expected to like this more, because I've really enjoyed Funke's other works. This one was not very engaging and the story lines felt a bit willy nilly at times. I think the main thing that made me disappointed was the main character. He was an obnoxious 11-year-old. I mean, I'm sure many (most?) 11-year-olds are obnoxious, but really his voice was just tiresome. Violet read this book too, and while she liked it, it was way above her level in terms of appropriate content for a ...more
lucky little cat
Apr 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Smart MG ghost story from reliable-as-always Cornelia Funke. Here we have a snarky eleven-year-old hero who gradually gets mildly de-snarkified, a haunted English boarding school, a fiercely smart best friend who's a girl, Stonehenge, and, of course, the Ghost Knight, sworn protector of the weak.

What more could you want? How about gorgeous, perspective-defying pencil illustrations that feature Salisbury Cathedral? And a Glossary and Afterword that identify historical and modern counterparts for
Ethan Parkin
There’s a great story somewhere in here but the exposition and coincidences are a bit messy and the main character is beyond irritating towards the end.
Make the protagonist Ella and remove the narrators voice and you’d have the charming English ghost story I wish it was.
Mary Ann
May 28, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: 5th, 4th, fantasy, 3rd, audio, ghosts
Likable but not particularly memorable. Good adventure ghost story for younger set. But Funke's other works are stronger. ...more
Aug 07, 2012 marked it as stopped-reading
Shelves: juvenile, ghosts
I have SO many books to read, and I just couldn't get past the whining. Oh, well. ...more
Yuska Vonita
Aug 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book is a BOMB! 5 star-entertainment. Totally engrossing!

I'm officially a fan!

It's a complete package: humor, adventure, horror, and romance. Such a heartwarming ending.

Aug 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I’ve never come to not like any of Cornelia Funke’s work. This list shall now include Ghost Knight.

When I first started I thought the writing wasn’t as rich as her other works like Inkheart or the Thief Lord. They’ve captivated me as a kid. But the story of Ghost Knight still managed to reel me in within a few chapter after Jon gets over his ‘exile’ to boarding school. And I find myself rooting for Jon and Ella.

You always learn something from her books. History, literature, friendship, love. And
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Cornelia Funke is a multiple award-winning German illustrator and storyteller, who writes fantasy for all ages of readers. Amongst her best known books is the Inkheart trilogy. Many of Cornelia's titles are published all over the world and translated into more than 30 languages. She has two children, two birds and a very old dog and lives in Los Angeles, California.

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“when the shadows of your life haunt you, and you bitterly miss the ones you once loved, then only sleep can grant oblivion” 7 likes
“He looked so glorious. Just like the knights I had dreamed about when I was six years old, whacking at brambles iin our garden, imagining I was fighting dragons and giants with a sword that made me invincible and wearing armor that protected me from all the things that frightened me - older kids, dogs, a storm in the knight, or my little sister's questions about when our father would be coming back.” 6 likes
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