Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Tournament at Gorlan

The Tournament at Gorlan
By John A. Flanagan
Philomel Books, 2015. Fiction. 384 pgs

In his latest series, a prequel to his Ranger’s Apprentice series, Flanagan takes us back to Halt’s early days as a ranger. Halt has joined Crowley, a loyal Ranger, during a time when Oswald’s kingship is being attacked from within; Baron Morgarath (the enemy that will later cause havoc in The Ruins of Gorlan, first book in the Ranger’s Apprentice series), while pretending to protect the king, is really plotting his overthrow. In his quest to seize the throne, Morgarath is dismissing the Rangers that are loyal to the King and replacing them with his own men. Halt and Crowley, having stood up to Morgarth and becoming branded as traitors, decide to track down the loyal Rangers that have been dismissed to form an army to fight back.

Fans of the Ranger’s Apprentice series will enjoy learning Halt’s back story, which includes details such as the first time he met Pauline, how Crowley became the leader of the Rangers, and how Prince Duncan became a force to reckon with. The book has all the same humor and action of the Flanagan’s other books, and the cliff hanger ending that will have you anxiously awaiting book two. An added bonus is John Keating’s narration on the audiobooks; the only thing better than reading the books yourself is listening to his delightful delivery.

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