Review of The Tournament at Gorlan (Ranger’s Apprentice Early Years)

October 14, 2015 Reviews 0 ★★★★★

Review of The Tournament at Gorlan (Ranger’s Apprentice Early Years)The Tournament at Gorlan by John Flanagan
Published by Philomel Books on October 6th 2015
Pages: 384
Format: Hardcover
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When Halt and Crowley discover that the ambitious Morgarath has been infiltrating the Rangers in order to corrupt the Corps, the young Rangers travel north to find Prince Duncan, seeking a royal warrant to stop Morgarath before it is too late. By weakening the Rangers, the most powerful force in support of the King, Morgarath plans to steal the throne.

Yet when Halt and Crowley arrive in Gorlan, they discover just how close Morgarath’s scheme is to success. Morgarath has a plan to discredit the Prince and alienate him from his father. At the same time, the Baron of Gorlan has been conspiring to win the trust and admiration of the Council of Barons to further his plan. If the young Rangers are to prevent the coup from succeeding, they will have to tread a dangerous path, which leads them to a thrilling climax at the annual tournament at Gorlan, where a series of bitter duels must be fought and won.

This origin story brings readers to a time before Will was an apprentice, and lays the groundwork for the epic battles that will culminate with The Ruins of Gorlan and The Burning Bridge—Books 1 and 2 of the Ranger’s Apprentice series.

Yet another great book in the Ranger’s Apprentice series. Morgarath works to take over the kingdom, imprisoning the King and also Prince Duncan, as well as disbanding the Ranger Corps. Crowley and Halt work to gather all the rangers and work to save the kingdom.

The beauty of this book is the banter and relationship between Halt and Crowley, seeing how Halt became a Ranger, the interplay between the rangers, and the scheming of Morgarath . It has the same feel and polish of the other books and is a fun page-turner.

This series has yet to let me down and this one is just another stellar work in an already excellent set of adventures. I’m very much looking forward to the next one.


About John Flanagan

John Flanagan grew up in Sydney, Australia hoping to be a writer. It wasn’t until he wrote a highly uncomplimentary poem about a senior executive at the agency where he worked, however, that his talent was revealed. It turned out one of the company directors agreed with John’s assessment of the executive, and happily agreed to train John in copywriting.

After writing advertising copy for the next two decades, John teamed with an old friend to develop a television sitcom, Hey Dad!, which went on to air for eight years.

John Flanagan’s bestselling Ranger’s Apprentice adventure series originally comprised twenty short stories, which John wrote to encourage his twelve-year-old son, Michael, to enjoy reading. Michael was a small boy, and all his friends were bigger and stronger than he was. John wanted to show him that reading was fun, and heroes weren’t necessarily big and muscular. Now in his mid-twenties, Michael is six feet tall, broad-shouldered and powerful – but he still loves The Ranger’s Apprentice.

The series has come a long way since then. Now sold to eighteen countries, the series has appeared on the New York Times Best Sellers List and is regularly shortlisted in children’s book awards in Australia and overseas.

John lives with his wife, Leonie, in the Sydney beachside suburb of Manly. He is currently writing further titles in the Ranger’s Apprentice series. In addition to their son, they have two grown daughters and four grandsons.

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