Gavaldon, also referred to as "The Woods Beyond", was the hometown of Sophie and Agatha, and where all of the Readers live. 


Graves Hill is Gavaldon's graveyard and the area of the property in which Agatha, Reaper and Callis lived. This is where a few main events, including the beginning of the story occur. It is unknown whether any other villages exist beyond it, but it could be possible.

Mr. Deauville's Storybook Shop, located between Battersby's Bakery and the Pickled Pig Pub, is the town's source of fairytales. Every few years, a pile of books will appear on its doorstep in a box from the School for Good and Evil. Mr Deauville will then close his shop and copy out the stories until he has enough for each child in Gavaldon. He will then open his doors do a 'three mile long line' when he has finished.

Battersby's Bakery, beside Mr Deauville's Storybook Shop, is Gavaldon's bakery. It has been known to sell cookies, and, presumably, other baked goods. Honora, Sophie's step-mother is an employee there. Stefan has been said to take Sophie there a lot.

The Pickled Pig Pub is a pub in Gavaldon, owned by Nicola's father. Nicola and her two brothers also work there, with Nicola set to inherit the pub.

Council of Elders

The council of elders was a organization that appeared in charge of the reader world.

The three old men on the council had long beards, with the length representing their age.

After proven corrupt in The Tale of Sophie and Agatha, the Council of Elders was replaced with a mayor's office in the fourth book. Stefan was, by unanimous vote, selected as mayor.


Before the events of Quests for Glory, Gavaldon was run by the Council of Elders (see above.)

This system was replaced by a diplomatic after the elders were revealed to be corrupt leaders. The people now vote for their mayor and council.


The main legend in Gavaldon is of the School for Good and Evil.

The legend says that every four years, on the eleventh night of the eleventh month, two children, one good, one evil, are kidnapped by the School Master. Those children, varying in age and gender, will never return home again. Following the disappearance of the children, Mr. Deauville received mysterious shipments of storybooks from an unknown messenger. After copying them by hand, he distributed them to the children of Gavaldon, who noticed that the paintings of the storybook children were identical to the missing. One year, the bookstore owner saw a stamp from the SGE on the box, and from then on, the kidnapper was known as "The Schoolmaster."

It is presumed that this legend has stopped, due to the old School Master being slain and having no use to abduct readers anymore.

Children from Gavaldon can now send applications to the School for Good and Evil, due to a request from Stefan to Sophie, the Dean of Evil.

Notable Inhabitants

Sophie (formerly)

Agatha (formerly)





Nicola (formerly)

Callis (formerly, deceased)

Vanessa (formerly, deceased)


There isn't much about Gavaldon's landscape in the series. However, we do know this:

  • Gavaldon is surrounded by treacherous, endless woods an all sides
  • There is a lake in Gavaldon, inhabited by geese
  • Agatha's house is on a hill
  • We can assume that it is quite warm in the town, since Sophie noted the bright sun in November

Notable Buildings/ Technology

Book 1:

  • Crooked clock tower in Gavaldon square
  • Agatha's rickety house that stands alone on Graves Hill

Book 2:

  • HAVE electricity (lights on theater marquee)
  • Lanes of cottages
  • Tents pitched to house those left homeless by the attacks from the Endless Woods
  • Church with friezes, statues, pews

Book 3:

  • Pyres for burning witches alive
  • Execution stage

Book 4:

  • Mayor's office


There isn't much revealed in the lifestyle of Gavaldon's townspeople. We do, however, know:

  • There is a market in Gavaldon for produce (mentioned in book 3)
  • We can infer that Gavaldon is male dominant because, in book 4, Nicola was said to beat her brothers in all their sports, which wouldn't have been notable unless it was unexpected
  • Before The Tale of Sophie and Agatha, villagers were terrified of the curse, and paranoid