Nightspark by Michael Mann

Before you go any futher, this is the second book in the Ghostcloud duology. To get the best out of the series you really do need to read Ghostcloud first to understand the world and the characters.

Right, have you read book one? Yes? Then we’ll continue…

Publication Date: 16 February 2023

The Blurb

Having escaped from the half-bombed, blackened power station where he was being imprisoned, 12-year-old Luke is finally reunited with his family above ground. But though Luke tries to readjust, he can’t shake the guilt he feels for his friend Ravi, who was left behind, nor the feeling that someone – or something – is watching him from the shadows.

With the help of ghost-girl named Alma and his friend Jess, Luke must journey across the country and sea to find Ravi, the friend who was there for him in his darkest hours. And in doing so, he must face his past and confront his deepest fears…

The Review

With an opening that left me reaching for my cushion of comfort, Nightspark is the electrifying conclusion to Ghostcloud.

London is still recovering from the war, and the children who escaped the power station are trying to rebuild their lives. We meet Luke as an apprentice police officer, while Jess is an apprentice plumber and Alma is on the Ghost Council. Having escaped Tabitha, Luke’s dreams mean she is never far from her thoughts and when henchman Terence resurfaces, he knows time is running out to rescue Ravi from her clutches.

We are once again sucked into an alternate London ravaged by war and filled with ghosts and ghouls. The Ghost Council seem far less forgiving of the half-ghost now that the threat to them has left the city. Luke feels the pressure to live up to their expectations as much as he does the guild to which he is apprenticed. His wariness of the Mayor wavers as he shows him kindness and respect where the officer who should be helping him does nothing hut sneer and put him down.

We also meet Ravi’s siter, who at first seems to have no intention of helping Luke and Jess find her brother, not so much because she has given up, but because her only way forward is to move on. This comes as a painful realisation to Luke who is very much stuck without the person who saved him when he arrived at the power station.

And, Tabitha is back, and stakes her claim as one of the worst villains in children’s literature. With absolutely no regard for anything or anyone, but herself she doesn’t care who she hurts to get what she wants, and revenge seems to be top of her list.

Themes of redemption and forgiveness, power corrupting and self-sacrifice all run beneath the surface of the story as it races towards its nail-biting conclusion.

Great for fans of:

Huge thanks to Hachette Kids for sedning me a review copy, and inviting me to host the Twitter Q&A with Michael for Nightspark’s launch. Find the chat by searching for #NightsparkQA.


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