“Rangers Apprentice (Book Four): Oakleaf Bearers” by John Flanagan (2006)
I read my first Rangers Apprentice book about three years ago, after hubby was adamant I needed to give fantasy more of a chance. I have blogged previously about Books One, Two and Three and described this series as fantasy lite – the only kind of fantasy I’m likely to read willingly.
In Book Four, our hero, Apprentice Ranger Will, and his companions Horace and Evanlyn, are found in the outskirts of Skandia, far from home, by Will’s mentor, Halt. They become embroiled in an impending war between the Temujai and the Skandians. All of them find something of worth to offer to the warmongering Skandians, with their focus solely on getting Evanlyn (who is really Princess Cassandra, daughter of King Duncan of Araluen) back to her father.
The widespread appeal of this series is obvious as the adventures are exciting and engaging. The characters are appealing and believable and the narrative, albeit formulaic, is not too predictable.
I wouldn’t teach the Rangers Apprentice books, but I have recommended them many times to junior students who are looking for something new to read. This was just the right book for my first holiday read.