Ranger’s Apprentice by John Flanagan
“A Ranger wears the lives of two dozen men on his belt.” is an old Araluen saying. This is because a Ranger is a deadly archer, able to shoot an arrow at impossible speed and with deathly accuracy. They are also notable by their ability to hide and sneak around. That is why common people refer to the as “Black Magicians”, and why The Ranger’s Apprentice is one of my favorite book series. In it, is the story of Will, an orphan who became one of the best Ranger’s in the Corps history, some intense moments, and multiple POV’s.
The first book talks about Will, a young boy who is taken as an apprentice to the Ranger, Halt. He had began his training as a Ranger, and a small time lapse occurs and Will and Halt are tracking a wild boar. They get a group of knights to do the hunt, but there was a second boar, and the circle was broken and Will had to kite the boar for a while, knocking arrows into it until Halt shot at it. Another time lapse occurs and it features Halt and Will going to the annual Ranger Gathering, when they get word of Morgarath and his army acting up and most definitely going to war. Long story short, Halt, Will, and Gilan (Halt’s former apprentice) track the Kalkara, creatures that paralyze their foes with their eyes, and kill them, with help of Sir Rodney and Baron Arald. This is just the first book, and yet there is quite a bit of promise in Will as a Ranger.
Will has gone through many hardships, like growing up being bullied by a kid name Horace, fighting 2 Kalkara, deadly beasts from the Mountains of Rain and Night, burning a bridge whilst being attacked by Wargles and Skandians, and that’s just the beginning. He overcomes a drug addiction, fights with the Skandians against the Temuji and much later stops a rebellion in Nihon-Ja. After all of the stuff that has happened to Will and all of the stuff that will has prevented, it shows that he is very skilled in his actions. One of my favorite things about this book series are the multiple POV’s. Sometimes it gives the reader a sense of dramatic irony, as you see what an antagonist might be plotting, and one of the protagonists about to fall into the trap.
Most likely vice versa, in the case of a Ranger being the protagonist. Other times it will help the reader understand the plot of the story, motives, or just make the world come together. This is why I give a nod to John Flanagan, creator of series such as The Ranger’s Apprentice and the Brotherband Chronicles. There are many other small, or otherwise unexplainable reasons why I love this style of writing, but it definitely works. In the series having over 13 books, and with more to come, is an amazing story about Will, some intense moments, and a very enjoyable writing style.
It’s easy to say that this is one of my favorite series, but if only the 11 others I showed this essay to agreed with me.