Friday, June 29, 2012

Review: Ruins of Gorlan by John Flanagan

The Ruins of Gorlan (Ranger's Apprentice, #1)Title: Ruins of Gorlan
Author: John Flanagan
Publisher: Puffin
Publishing Date: June 8th 2006
Pages: 249
Genre: Young Adult High Fantasy
Series: Ranger’s Apprentice #1
Source: Hardcover

Goodreads Summary:

They have always scared him in the past—the Rangers, with their dark cloaks and shadowy ways. The villagers believe the Rangers practice magic that makes them invisible to ordinary people. And now 15-year-old Will, always small for his age, has been chosen as a Ranger's apprentice. What he doesn't yet realize is that the Rangers are the protectors of the kingdom. Highly trained in the skills of battle and surveillance, they fight the battles before the battles reach the people. And as Will is about to learn, there is a large battle brewing. The exiled Morgarath, Lord of the Mountains of Rain and Night, is gathering his forces for an attack on the kingdom. This time, he will not be denied. . . .

I decided to give this book a chance when it was a monthly read for my book club. My son and husband had been talking about it for years so now or never. This was not a normal read for me and I was pleasantly surprised.

The story is based around three teenagers (2 boys and 1 girl) as they picked their profession upon coming of age. The main character is a small boy for his age but excellent at staying hidden and is picked up to be a Ranger’s apprentice. As he lives and learns with his apprentice, they discover treachery. He becomes an important role within the war.

The book was a little slow for me, but I am sure that will change further in the series. This book took a bit time on setting up the story. Like many other fantasy books, Ruins of Gorlan is a very involved world. The story does flip back and forth between the tree teenagers but mainly focuses on Will, the ranger’s apprentice and Boris who is training to be a warrior. I really liked all the characters, even Boris who seems to be a little bit of a bully. I do have high hopes for him though. I enjoyed watching the relationships between masters and apprentices grow and the trust that begins to form between them.

I will continue the story and see where it goes.


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