We’ve found a new series of books that G1 really enjoys. It was an accidental find that I stumbled upon when I searching for Wings of Fire. A quick check on Commonsense Media revealed some positive ratings:
- 4 stars for positive messages
- 4 stars for positive role models
- 4 stars for overall book quality
- parents and children who reviewed the book gave it 5 stars
When I told G1 about it, he mentioned that it was on order at his school library. With 12 books in the series, I figured it would keep him busy for a little while. He’s currently on book six and is continuing to fly through the books at full-steam ahead so I guess I can safely say that the story appeals to him.
Recommended for children age 10 and up (Grade 5 and up) with a Lexile reading level of 920.
Set in the mythical kingdom of Araluen, the series is about the story of Will who has been chosen to become a ranger’s apprentice where he will train to become one of the protectors of the kingdom.
Book 1: The Ruins of Gorlan
Will hopes to become a knight; instead, he winds up as a Ranger’s apprentice, joining the secretive corps that uses stealth, woodcraft, and courage to protect the kingdom. His aptitude and bravery gradually earn the respect of his gruff but good-hearted master. When the kingdom is attacked by evil magic forces, Will helps track down and defeat a couple of particularly nasty beasts. – School Library Journal
G1 says the stories remind him a little of Beast Quest and they’re funny. Apparently, John Flanagan writes with a brand of humour that appeals to G1. Here is an excerpt from his book report:
The Ranger’s Apprentice is a good book for both adults and children. It is based upon Medieval times where there are mysterious people called “Rangers”. The people of the kingdom believe the Rangers dabble in sorcery, allowing them to appear and disappear at will, shoot with incredible accuracy, and battle with only a dagger and a throwing knife.
The kingdom of Aruluen is ruled by King Duncan with the help of his Barons who each rule one of the many castles scattered throughout the land. Each castle has a village and a ranger that looks after that village. King Duncan also has his own personal ranger, named Halt.
In book one, Halt takes up an apprentice ranger by the name of Will – the main protagonist of the Ranger’s Apprentice series. When wolf-like beasts begin terrorising the kingdom’s leaders, Halt becomes trapped at the Ruins of Gorlan, and it is up to Will to save him!
He would have shared more, but I felt it would be giving away the story.
Other books in the series:
- The Burning Bridge
- The Ice-bound Land
- The Battle for Skandia
- The Sorcerer of the North
- The Siege of Macindaw
- Erak’s Ransom
- Kings of Klonmel
- Halt’s Peril
- The Emperor of Nihon-Ja
- The Lost Stories
- The Royal Ranger
Then there are two other prequels from the Ranger’s Apprentice:
John Flanagan has also written another series set in the same world as The Ranger’s Apprentice called The Brotherband Chronicles which currently comprises of six books. This series also rates pretty well on Commonsense Media so it will be a nice follow-on after G1 is done with The Ranger’s Apprentice.
For more recommendations, see G1’s Reading List.