Monday, September 27, 2010

The Ruins of Gorlan

The Ruins of Gorlan (Ranger’s Apprentice, book 1) by John Flanagan, 2005; 249 pages.
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 . . . .
So I’m reading the prologue and I’m thinking, “This sounds a lot like LoTR,” but after that The Ruins of Gorlan showed itself to be an original fantasy read.
While the premise of the book isn’t exactly something new, I felt that the author, John Flanagan, did an excellent job making the story just come alive and with adding a newish perspective to the whole fantasy good Vs evil story.
I loved the relationship between Will (the MC) and his master (Holt). It was funny, yet as the book went on you came to see how much they both came to respect and depend on one another.
I thought it was interesting how the biggest role the villain of the book played was only mainly in the prologue of the book. Even though he wasn’t mentioned much in the book I found him to be an excellent baddie. 
My absolute favorite part of The Ruins of Gorlan would have to be when Will scaled the outside of the castle wall, it was awesome and made me like the MC even more then I already did. I have another favorite part of the book, but it would be a total spoiler if I told you what it was, I’ll just that it was very well written without overplaying the significance of what transpired between the two characters.
Least favorite part of the book would have to be that it was just so short. I felt that it ended just as I was beginning to grow attached to Will and the whole cast of characters.

If you haven’t read The Ruins of Gorlan yet what are you waiting for? It’s a great, fast paced read and if you’re like me and starting this series so late in the game there’re more volumes to be devoured without having to wait for them to be released.

The Ruins of Gorlan earns 5 out of 5 pineapples.


  1. I adore coming to series late because I like to consume the first three books as quickly as possible. Waiting for the second installment is just not my thing. :)

  2. Warriors have always been a chosen personality worthy of stalking if only to watch that roguish swagger, but since that could get me arrested I'll settle for a well written saga or two. This sounds like the kind of story that could possibly keep me warm this winter and I may even have to give up that snuggy!


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