Monday, August 16, 2010
John Flanagan, RANGER'S APPRENTICE SERIES
A great middle-grade/YA series; I've read the first seven (THE RUINS OF GORLAN, THE BURNING BRIDGE, THE ICEBOUND LAND, THE BATTLE FOR SKANDIA, THE SORCERER OF THE NORTH, THE SIEGE OF MACINDAW, ERAK'S RANSOM). There's a male protagonist but my 10-year-old daughter and I are reading them together and she loves them. The boy Will (an orphan, of course, with two friends, a la Potter: a girl and a boy) is chosen to be a Ranger's apprentice--the rangers being the spies for a quasi-fantastical kingdom that sounds a lot like England. (For example, one of the tribes in the outlying areas is the "Scottis," whose leader is Mac-something or other.) Like the Harry Potter series, the first book is more middle-grade; later ones have darker themes and a bit more swearing and love-interest. But well-written, good vocabulary, fast pacing. For those who liked Harry Potter and Riordan's Percy Jackson series, this is a good fit.