Skip to main content

The Ruins of Gorlan


John Flanagan's first fantasy/action book in his Ranger's Apprentice series begins the story of Will, a castle ward - which is an orphan taken in by the Baron, given food, shelter, and the opportunity to better their station in life on Choosing Day. Choosing Day is the event that happens in every castle ward’s life where they get the opportunity to make their wishes for their future careers known and hopefully be selected by the Craftmaster of their liking (for example, the Battleschool Craftmaster is an army recruiter of sorts, there’s a Diplomat field, Horsemaster, and many others).

Will, having grown up with no information known of his parents (and no last name), knows only that his father was a brave warrior who died in battle. Because of this, he wishes with all his heart to be accepted in the Battleschool.

But when Choosing Day is over, he’s been rejected by the Battleschool because of his small size and strangely offered a spot by the Rangers, who have always been considered odd and suspicious to the villagers with their nerve-wracking ways of appearing, seemingly, out of thin air.

Soon, though, Will realizes there is more to the Rangers than the ordinary inhabitant of the kingdom understands – and in the battle that is brewing for the near future, his newfound training may just make his father proud yet.

As a first in a series, this novel is excellent at introducing us to cast of characters that are interesting and easy to invest in. We follow more than just Will in his first months of apprenticeship. It is entertaining reading to tag along with Will in his training with the mysterious, likable (if grumpy) Halt. There is good character development offered up here by John Flanagan and a great amount of action, not to mention creative and original supernatural creatures that threaten the safety of the kingdom.

Was I jumping up and down as I read The Ruins of Gorlan? No. But it was a fast paced, appealing read that left me very intrigued about the next novel, The Burning Bridge. Will, Horace, Halt and the other castle ward’s make for engaging characters and I have a feeling the following novels might give way more easily to increased action and maybe even romantic subplots. I believe Ranger’s Apprentice is a book that would be as enjoyed by males as females.


I felt it was strong opening to a possibly even better series, but as I said – I’m not shouting about it.

Comments

Canada said…
The Rangers Apprentice is a fiction book that catches the readers attention onm the first page. A major conflict in The Rangers Apprentice is when the main character, Will, first goes to Choosing Day. That is a day when a child is chosen for the job he will remain in and work at for the rest of his or her life. Will always had the desire to go to Battle School to train to become a knight. Unfortunately, he believes, Will ends up being chosen to be a Ranger. Will must get used to being chosen for a position he didn't want to be in the first place. But in the end Will destroys a massive beast called a Kalkara and when he goes back to his school he is honored by his classmates and superiors. They offer him a position in Battle School, but Will rejects it as he comes to realize he has been enjoying his placement as a Ranger.
I think that Will is like Zech MacIvey from A Land Remembered. Will can do many things he did not know he could do, just like Zech. Zech took down a large bear when he was 5 or 6 years old with a double barrel shotgun. Will, as I said, took down a large beast called a Kalkara with a thick layer of fur held together by wax so it is technically is covered in scales. Will shot it with a flaming - arrow when he found out the wax on their bodies are flammable.
If I were a famous author I would make the jacket blurb something like:
Fifteen year old Will has been chosen to be a Ranger at his Choosing Day. He is now being taught the way of the Ranger by a very mysterious man named Halt. Will goes on many adventures with his master and learns a lot from the mysterious teacher. By being a ranger, Will, will someday look after his own fief. A fief is a small piece of land that the Ranger has to guard. But first he has to prove himself to his master....

Popular posts from this blog

Reckless

Reckless is a YA fantasy adventure by the ever-revered (for good reason) Cornelia Funke.

Jacob Reckless has been passing through a mirror portal in his father's forgotten (or, rather, ignored) study for years now. After his father disappeared and his mother became a shell of her former self, he found it. Since then, it's been hard to stay tethered to his world - instead, he's become more and more connected to the alternative option.

In fact, he's managed to make a name for himself as a treasure hunter. And always by his side is a loyal vixen named Fox, a shape-shifter. She's probably the closest thing he has to a friend - but Jacob still considers himself a loner. But he's become comfortable with the different creatures, monsters, and magic this world has to offer - even though right now they are at war with a stone people called Goyl. None of that interests him. He just seeks out his mysterious objects and fetches good prices.

But that's all about to change. …

Real Live Boyfriends

Real Live Boyfriends is a YA contemporary novel by E. Lockhart, and the fourth novel in the Ruby Oliver quartet.

Here we are on the last day of “Ruby Oliver Week” and if you aren’t already reading these books – well, why not?

But I’m more than sure most of you are – and hopefully you’re all caught up, and therefore not at risk of being spoiled by my review of Real Live Boyfriends. You’ve been warned!

Ruby Oliver is beginning her senior year of high school with a real live boyfriend: Noel.

At least she thought she was.

After having spent the rest of junior year and the beginning of summer being fully in love (okay, they never actually said the word, but the vibes were strongly in that direction), Ruby is now confused.

Again.

When Noel went to visit his brother in New York for a while, almost every day they talked on the phone and exchanged funny emails. She never once felt insecure.

Until all of a sudden – communication stopped. Ruby would call and he wouldn’t answer. She’d leave a voice mai…

Titanic: S.O.S.

S.O.S. is the third and final book in Gordon Korman's middle-grade Titanic trilogy.

This is the third book in a trilogy, book addicts! You must, I repeat, must read the first two books (Unsinkable and Collision Course) before you read this review. Otherwise you are just going to ruin all the twists! Sure, we know the Titanic sinks - but the surprises that are revealed about our characters, among other things, should not be spoiled!

But all of you that have read the first two books (which I hope are many of you, because this a great series), can rest assured that I won't spoil anything from S.O.S. itself - just a basic recap and my opinion.

Here goes:

The Titanic is sinking. No one wants to believe it, but the bow is almost imperceptibly starting to dip into the freezing Atlantic Ocean - and our four main characters are thrown into a race for survival.

Paddy is locked up below deck, having finally been caught as a stowaway. In one cell over are the very criminals that wish him dead…