Author: John Flanagan
Genre: Children Fiction
Publication Date: June 2006
Age Range: 9 to 12
Date Scoot Read: July 2010
Scoot's Rating: 7- Enjoyed most of it.
Synopsis (via Goodreads): He had always wanted to be a warrior. The Rangers, with their dark cloaks and shadowy ways, made him nervous. The villagers believe the Rangers practice magic that makes them invisible to ordinary people. And now fifteen year-old Will, always small for his age, has been chosen as a Ranger's apprentice. What he doesn't realize yet 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 enjoyed most of this book. Will is a quickly likeable character and you really feel connected to him right from the start. I like the split perceptions of the novel, where we got to hear about what was happening to Will and Horace. At first I was a little weary of Horace and what role he might play in the future, but I came to love his character as time passed. The adventure/action scenes were well written and kept you on your toes. However, a lot of the book seemed to drag, especially as the teens are in their respective training schools and you get to hear all the details of it. I now feel like I can properly shoot an arrow, but what I really wanted was less detail and more action-filled plot. The story felt a little slow until you would run into an action scene, which made it worth drudging through the details. This is the first book in a series. It looks like there are already 8 more books – so there are a lot more to go! I do want to know what happens with Will, Horace and their friends so I am going to add the next book to my ‘to-read’ list. Let’s see if the pace picks up a little more and the series gets better.