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“We have not yet slain the devil: how shall we determine who is to be our new god”

 

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Here, Learn some more about this book:

 

The 1-line Review:

A seriously quotable fantasy novel .

The longer review:

There were at least 3 lines that I read and had to pause for a second because of how impressive the lines read. The first one that stopped me was “”We have not yet slain the devil: how shall we determine who is to be our new god.” that was a seriously awesome line to me. I can’t find the other 2 quotes for the life of me but there were a couple others that had some real pull.

The story starts off with a Ranger’s Apprentice feel and the rest falls in line with a story similar to The Beyonder’s series.  It is a lightning-fast non-magic fantasy.  The story is driven by political shifts and espionage, but not to the Level of Game of Thrones. This story would be a great read for a youngster who would love Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings, but are too young for those levels of reading.

I was impressed with the sage-ness of the character Mordecani. Many of the ‘quotable wisdoms’ came from him. The main character, prince Korbin, progresses well from start to finish and was a very likable main character.  Prince Korbin ages from boy to man and has to fight with feeling of Duty, and a justice of law that must be brought down upon him.

The strength of the writing and flow of the story overcomes any debut novel shortcomings I detail below. I very much enjoyed the book start to finish.

 

Where the book lost a star:

Half a star for character naming. Down to the end I was confused with character and location names. The author favored names beginning with A (Aeggis, Ascanth, Astrith, Adamah, Addrich) and R (Rotchardin, Raccanith, Radrin, Roald) .  The sound of many of the names felt too similar,  like how Angie and Angela are similar while Angie and Amanda are less so.

My other gripe was the interjection of a young character in the middle of the novel. There needed to be a flash back type memory or discussion placed somewhere  in the beginning of the novel to tie that character to something. Rather it felt completely out of no where.

Bottom Line:

This was a great debut, I expect the next to really build and flourish off of this first tale. The land of Adamah has real potential to flourish into a great fantasy realm.

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The Rangers Apprentice: The Royal Ranger- Review

If you love The Rangers Apprentice series, you will LOVE this book.

4.5 stars

 The perfect read for a Rangers Apprentice fan.  This book gave me such a feeling of nostalgia, it was like visiting and old friend.  Flanagan tore at my emotions and made me laugh from start to finish of The Royal Ranger.

Like others said, the adventure isn’t as grandiose as previous novels. It does not make this story any less exciting than previous novels. The adventure Will and the new apprentice undertake is fitting and realistic first quest for an apprentice ranger.

The first book in the series follows Will as an apprentice, the last book follows will as a trainer of an apprentice. Will trains the newest apprentice, and he falls into a similar role as halt in the first novel. I felt like I was reading book 1 again but from halts point of view.

Pros:

The newest Ranger Maddie

The role reversal of this book compared to book 1

The emotion

How Flanagan writes conversations.

Added vocabulary

Cons:

Will seems to lose a step

Smaller adventure than we are used too

*****SOME SPOILERS BELOW******

The Long:

Half a star was taken away because I believe Will could have eliminated more thugs than he did at the end of the book. He not being able to hit more of them didn’t fit his legendary persona. That was my only concern.

This read is very similar to book 1. Will becomes a mentor and emulates much of what Halt does in the first novel. He starts using Halt’s phrases and realizes he has become much like Halt. He sees traits in his apprentice, Maddie, that remind him of himself as a young apprentice.  I laughed through much of the novel as it unfolded. I kept remembering book one and how Halt acted and treated Will, and it was hilarious to see the same occurrences play out again. Only this time from the ranger, not the apprentices, point of view.

We stay in Araluen the entire time, which is fitting when you have an apprentice. I would have liked a bigger adventure, but it simply would not have fit the story line. It would have been like coming home from your desk job on a Wednesday, then call in sick on Thursday because the President said you are the only hope to save the world from an alien invasion, then go back to work on Friday like it was no big deal; That just doesn’t make sense.

The character relationships between all of the main characters remain strong. Flanagan does a fantastic job of making all of their personas and relationships with each other feel very real.  They have believable concerns and dilemmas throughout the novel, making the characters feel very real and human despite being fictional.

The royal ranger ends the series very well. Flanagan closed the book on Will’s adventures, and I feel content with what happened. He has the option to open up a new series with Maddie, but Will as the main character has come to an end.

The Story:

We enter Araluen almost 2 years after Horace and Cassandra’s Marriage.  The King is sick, Cassandra is the regent, and everything in the kingdom is calm.  Cassandra and Horace have a daughter, Maddie, who is as adventurous and headstrong as her mother.

>>>>>>>BIG SPOILER ON NEXT LINE<<<<<<<<

Will is hell bent on revenge after the death of Alyss. Halt and Gilan convince Cassandra and Horace to strip Maddie of her nobility and have her enter the ranger corps under Will Treaty’s tutelage. In the hopes that Maddie will stop being a brat and give Will something to live for again.

>>>>>>spoilers returning to normal levels<<<<<<<

Will and Maddie train at Will’s cabin at Redmont Fief. We see both characters evolve because of the other involvement in each other’s life.  Maddie introduces a new weapon to the Rangers’ armory.  The two of them eventually are given a quest by Gilan, the new Ranger Commandment. Will and Maddie embark on a classic feeling Ranger quest to destroy a slave trading gang, which inevitably leads to Will finding redemption when he least expected it.

The Writing: 

Flanagan writes conversations that feel so real and natural. Many of the conversations will feel relatable to real life. Flanagan has always done an excellent job creating real world feeling situation.

The book is filled with challenging vocab words.  Flanagan put in the perfect amount of vocab, and I was impressed with the amount of times I found myself looking up a definition. I was not expecting this, and loved that he is able to challenge readers with his writing.

The Characters:

Will- Is in a state of depression. He is on the verge of getting kicked out of the Ranger Corps. Halt and Gilan quickly find a way to save their friend. Will slowly becomes (an older, Halt like) version of his younger self with the help of Maddie.   My heart went out to how Will must have felt at the beginning of the novel.

Halt and Pauline- See like a typical couple now. They banter and work well as a team and always seem to be on the same page as one another.  Pauline has 1 pov chapter in the beginning of the novel. Both Halt and Pauline take supporting rolls through this novel, and are not present through much of the middle of the story. Halt is now a retired ranger; he denied the position of Commandment when it was offered to him.

Horace and Cassandra- are stressed with running the kingdom for Cassandras incumbent father. They have a lot to deal with. On top of the kingdom they have a rebellious teenager. They take on a role of parents who just don’t know what to do; feeling like their child is on her last straw.  They also appear in the beginning and end of the book, but are not present during most of it.

Maddie- acts like the typical royal brat in the beginning of the novel. She has some redeemable traits, like being very personable with the guards, and being a good hunter with her sling.  She is very spoiled and pretentious.  She evolves with her training with Will. By the end of the novel she evolves into a very mature and respectable young adult.

Gilan- has been awarded the position of Ranger Commandant. He receives the position when Halt refuses. He handles the job well, but is concerned that Will is close to being ejected from the corps.

Jenny- Is still running her restaurant and appears and is mentioned a couple of time through the novel.

Overall:

4.5 stars- A great end to a series I loved so much. Review will be rounded up to 5 on Amazon and Good reads because this book is worth it!!

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