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Trouble is brewing. The Araluen Kingdom has been at relative peace for the past 16 or so years. Now, Lord Morgorath, a rebellious knight, has stirred up an army and is threatening to attack Araluen. Halt and Will, a ranger and his apprentice, are hot on the trail of some of Lord Morgorath’s wargals, beastlike creatures bound to the rebellious knight’s will.

As the trail gets hotter, the wargals come up with one of Lord Morgorath’s men, who insists he is on a mission for the knight. Not believing him, the wargals kill the man, and are soon after all shot down by Halt and Will’s arrows. Inspecting the man, Halt discovers Lord Morgorath’s battle plans.

Will, along with Horace, his friend from the battle school, and Gilan, another ranger, are all sent to Celtica, a Neighboring country to fetch reinforcements for King Duncan’s army. When the procession arrives, they find the country deserted. While there, they meet up with a girl named Evanlyn, a noble lady’s maid who was visiting Celtica when wargals attacked, taking miners prisoner, killing anybody else, and those who fled were being bottled up on a southern peninsula. Gilan rushes back to the kingdom to advise the king, while Will, Horace and Evanlyn trail a group of wargals, and end up having to burn down a bridge to stop the wargal advance on the king’s army’s rear.

John Flanagan is very good at coming up with great ideas; he has great plots in all the books of his I read, and he develops characters and scenery very well. I have really enjoyed what I’ve read of the Rangers Apprentice series, and I am trying to find some way to get books 5-7. One minor detail, I think he could have been a tad more creative with the names of countries and places. Skandia, Celtica, Hibernia; there are definitely better names that he could have come up with, but that is just a minor issue. Overall, considering plot and development, this book scores an A+.

Some of the character’s dialog, however, has very strong language. I just can’t get why someone would spoil such a great story with even a small amount of crass talk in it. This is probably the worst part of the series. I don’t like this aspect of it at all. But other than that, there isn’t really anything else that I can think of that is really all that bad. If only Flanagan had cut out all the usage of bad language, this series would have been much, much better. I would recommend Rangers Apprentice to a friend, definitely. It’s a fun read, and I have enjoyed all the books in the series that I have read.

Caleb Joyce


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Published on 4 August, 2011. Last updated on

11 Comments

  1. BushMaid

    I think John Flanagan’s Ranger’s Apprentice series is a masterpiece; I have read the whole series, and read the whole series aloud to my family. Our family love them. They made us laugh, they made us cry; it had us sitting on the edges of our seats biting our nails, and then sagging in our chairs with relief. The characters became like friends to us, and are a constant source of conversation.

    Out of all the books I’ve read, these score on my list of the very best. 🙂

  2. Corey P.

    My brother read through most of the series and really enjoyed it. I may have to read hem myself. 🙂

    Between you and Andrew and the other reviewers here, my to-be-read list is getting swamped! 🙂

  3. Molly Evangeline

    Great review! I just reviewed the first book on my blog. I probably never would have read the series at all if I hadn’t read this review first. 🙂 And that would have been a shame because, so far, I’m loving what I’m reading.

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