Thursday, July 30, 2009

Ranger's Apprentice: The Ruins of Gorlan, by John Flanagan

First off, this book is *very* LOTR derivative! Which you probably
guessed from the title. However after I got past the blatant
copying of names and places, I found a good story underneath.
Will is an orphan, he is small and wiry. He desperately wanted to
get into battleschool, but was rejected because he was too small.
Instead he ends up apprenticed to the mysterious Halt, a ranger
who speaks little and does a lot. At first Will is disappointed with
this arrangement, but in time he realizes that being a ranger is
quite interesting.
My really huge problem with this book is not the writing (which
is good) or the main character (who is interesting), but the
villain. Named Morgarath (only a couple letters different from
Tolkin's big bad) I found him an implausible character. If he was
feared and evil to the extent claimed it would seem highly
unlikely that he would be heard of only in children's tales after
barely 15 years of exile. These facts bothered me so much it
rather took away from the story.
3 stars,

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