Search - List of Books by Robert Westall

Robert Atkinson Westall (7 October 1929, North Shields – 15 April 1993, Warrington hospital) is the author of many books, mostly fiction for children, though also for adults, and non-fiction. Many of his novels while supposedly aimed at a teenage audience deal with many complex, dark and in many ways adult themes. Westall's novel The Wheatstone Pond, adapted for BBC Radio 4 in 2002, is particularly black in parts and is, in this manner, entirely indistinguishable from an adult novel. His children's fiction includes The Machine Gunners (1975), set during the Second World War, where a group of children living in North Shields, England try to retrieve a machine gun from the turret of a felled German aircraft. It was his first novel for children, winning the Carnegie Medal; it was made into a BBC television serial in 1983. In its sequel, Fathom Five (1979), many of the same characters believe there to be a German spy in their home town of Garmouth. He won the Carnegie Medal again in 1982 for The Scarecrows, the Smarties prize in 1989 for Blitzcat and the Guardian Award in 1991 for The Kingdom by the Sea.

Westall's work can be roughly divided between the World War II tale, "school stories" and tales of the supernatural. Indeed, many think that his ghost stories are the finest since M. R. James, but Westall was especially adept at combining genres and merged all three themes effortlessly. His characters of any age are often blessed with strength of will and purpose that is the ultimate hallmark of his stories. While Westall's novels, for the most part, touch upon the supernatural, they tend to avoid the realms of fantasy. The fantastic, when used by Westall, is a device used within a story rather than the sole purpose of a story. The Devil on the Road is a particularly good example of Westall's sophistication and subtlety when dealing with the supernatural and of his ability to tell a story which is both contemplative and entirely gripping. The science fiction novel Futuretrack Five is similarly compelling. Westall creates a dystopian future as cutting and insightful as Orwell's. The dystopia of Futuretrack Five however, while in places bleak, is more bittersweet than despairing.

Robert Westall was born in North Shields, in 1929, and grew up there on Tyneside during the Second World War; wartime Tyneside is the setting for many of his novels, for which his own life was a great source and inspiration. After studying Fine Art at Durham University, then Sculpture at the Slade School of Art in London, he became an art teacher in Northern schools, including Sir John Deane's Grammar School, (now Sir John Deane's College), while also working as a journalist, dealing in antiques and serving as a branch director of Samaritans. In 1985, he retired in order to concentrate on his writing.

At the time of his death, he lived with his partner Lindy McKinnel at 1 Woodland Avenue in the village of Lymm in Cheshire. Previously he had lived at 20 Winnington Lane, Northwich, and had run Magpie Antiques, Church Street, Davenham.As a journalist he wrote for Cheshire Life, the Northwich Chronicle and the Warrington Guardian. A memorial service was held on September 29, 1993, at nearby All Saints' Church, Thelwall, Warrington. Tributes were paid by former teaching colleagues and Miriam Hodgson, editorial director (fiction) Reed Children's Books.

A blue plaque was placed on Westall's birthplace, 7 Vicarage Street, North Shields, on Tyneside, the following year. There is also a Westall Walk, which takes fans around locations used by the world famous children's writer in his stories.

An interesting profile can be found at, a blog about children's writers and children's fiction.

Westall's work has caught the imagination of the Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki. In October 2006 A Trip to Tynemouth by Miyazaki was published in Japan. Miyazaki based the story on, "Blackham's Wimpy", first published in Westall's short story collection Break of Dark. The rival RAF crews in the story fly Vickers Wellington bombers. The nickname comes from J. Wellington Wimpy in the Popeye cartoons.

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This author page uses material from the Wikipedia article "Robert Westall", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0
Total Books: 289
Spectral Shadows Three Supernatural Novellas
2016 - Spectral Shadows Three Supernatural Novellas [Blackham's Wimpey, The Wheatstone Pond, Yaxley's Cat] (Paperback)
ISBN-13: 9781943910434
ISBN-10: 194391043X
Genre: Literature & Fiction

The Stones of Muncaster Cathedral Two Stories of the Supernatural
2015 - The Stones of Muncaster Cathedral Two Stories of the Supernatural (Paperback)
ISBN-13: 9781943910199
ISBN-10: 1943910197
Genres: Children's Books, Literature & Fiction
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.

The Machine Gunners
2015 - The Machine Gunners (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover, Audio Cassette
ISBN-13: 9781447284161
ISBN-10: 144728416X
Genre: Children's Books

2015 - Blitzcat (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover, Audio Cassette
ISBN-13: 9781447284604
ISBN-10: 1447284607
Genre: Children's Books

Antique Dust Ghost Stories
2015 - Antique Dust Ghost Stories [Valancourt 20th Century Classics] (Paperback)Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9781941147603
ISBN-10: 1941147607
Genre: Literature & Fiction

Machine Gunners
2012 - Machine Gunners (Paperback)
ISBN-13: 9781848423145
ISBN-10: 1848423144
Genre: Children's Books

Break of Dark
2009 - Break of Dark (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9781849411455
ISBN-10: 184941145X

Kingdom by the Sea
2009 - Kingdom By the Sea [Essential Modern Classics] (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover, Audio Cassette
ISBN-13: 9780007301416
ISBN-10: 0007301413
Genre: Children's Books

Christmas Spirit Two Stories by Robert Westall
2007 - Christmas Spirit Two Stories By Robert Westall (Hardcover)Paperback
ISBN-13: 9781846470370
ISBN-10: 1846470374
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.

A Time of Fire
2007 - A Time of Fire (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover, Audio Cassette
ISBN-13: 9781846470325
ISBN-10: 1846470323

Spinetinglers Ghoulish Ghost Stories
2007 - Spinetinglers Ghoulish Ghost Stories (Paperback)
ISBN-13: 9780753461402
ISBN-10: 0753461404
Genres: Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Teen & Young Adult
  • Currently 2.5/5 Stars.

The Wind Eye
2007 - The Wind Eye (Paperback)Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9781846470288
ISBN-10: 1846470285

Denton the Dragon and the Tale of Tear River
2005 - Denton the Dragon and the Tale of Tear River (Hardcover)Paperback
ISBN-13: 9781419623325
ISBN-10: 141962332X
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Teen & Young Adult

2005 - Scarecrows (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9780099482345
ISBN-10: 0099482347
Genres: Children's Books, Teen & Young Adult

Cats' Whispers and Tales
2004 - Cats' Whispers and Tales (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9780330435581
ISBN-10: 0330435582
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Teen & Young Adult

Ghost Abbey
2004 - Ghost Abbey (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9780552550536
ISBN-10: 0552550531
Genres: Children's Books, Literature & Fiction

Robert Westall Box Set
2003 - Robert Westall Box Set (Paperback)
ISBN-13: 9780330437530
ISBN-10: 0330437534
Genre: Teen & Young Adult

David and the Kittens
2003 - David and the Kittens (Hardcover)Paperback
ISBN-13: 9780340743799
ISBN-10: 0340743794
Genre: Teen & Young Adult
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.

Ghost Stories
2003 - Ghost Stories [Red Hot Reads] (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9780753456750
ISBN-10: 0753456753
Genres: Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Teen & Young Adult, Horror
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.

Fearful Lovers
2003 - Fearful Lovers (Paperback)Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9780330329255
ISBN-10: 0330329251
Genre: Teen & Young Adult

Ghosts and Journeys
2003 - Ghosts and Journeys (Paperback)Hardcover
ISBN-13: 9780330309042
ISBN-10: 0330309048
Genres: Children's Books, Teen & Young Adult, Horror

2003 - The Call [Oxford Children's Modern Classics] (Paperback)
2001 - Blitz [Cascades] (Hardcover)Paperback, Hardcover
2000 - Trouble in Two Centuries [New Windmills] (Hardcover)
1999 - Love Match [Contents] (Paperback)
1999 - Gulf Mit Materialien [Lernmaterialien] (Paperback)
1998 - Der Feind [German Edition] (Paperback)
1998 - The Best of Westall Demons and Shadows V 1 [The best of Robert Westall] (Hardcover)
1998 - Promise [Piper S.] (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
1996 - Das Versprechen [Ab 12 J.] (Paperback)
1996 - The Promise [M Books] (Hardcover)Paperback, Hardcover
1996 - Yaxley's Cat [M Books] (Hardcover)Paperback, Hardcover
1995 - The Cats of Seroster [Piccolo Books] (Hardcover)Hardcover
1995 - The Call and Other Stories [Puffin Teenage Fiction S.] (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
1995 - The Scarecrows [Puffin Teenage Fiction] (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
1995 - Yaxleys Katze [Ab 10 J.] (Paperback)
1995 - Echoes of War [Puffin Teenage Fiction] (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
1992 - Stormsearch Pb [Puffin Books] (Paperback)Paperback
1986 - R and D [R D] (Hardcover)
1981 - Devil on the Road [Puffin Books] (Paperback)Paperback, Hardcover
Devil on the Road The [Plus - Spanish Edition] (Hardcover)Paperback, Hardcover
Futuretrack [Plus - Spanish Edition] (Hardcover)Paperback, Hardcover
Gulf/large Print [Galaxy Children's Large Print Books] (Hardcover)
Taigh-faire [Ioma-Gaoith] (Paperback)
Antique Dust [Transaction Large Print Books] (Hardcover)Paperback, Hardcover
Gata Del Piloto La [Spanish Edition] (Paperback)