Ranger's Apprentice is a series of novels written by John Flanagan. It centers around the titular character Will, the apprentice of Ranger Halt, though he graduates from his apprenticeship partway through the series. It is based on a collection of short stories originally written by Flanagan to encourage his son to enjoy reading. This series is now being sold in 13 international markets.
There are currently twelve books in the series; Flanagan has said there will be no more.
The Ruins of Gorlan
- Main article: The Ruins of Gorlan
Will is a 15-year-old orphan without a last name. He lives in Castle Redmont and longs to join the Battleschool and become a knight, an occupation he believes his father had. He is therefore devastated when he is rejected. However, Will is soon shocked with the knowledge that another of the craftmasters, Halt the Ranger, had accepted him. Halt wanted him to become one of the Rangers, a mysterious group feared by the castlefolk. The people of Araluen believe the Rangers are wizards gifted with invisibility, but they were actually just trained at moving silently. Their job is to provide law, order, and intelligence to the king. With the new skills that Halt teaches him, Will has the skills crucial for a Ranger.
The Burning Bridge
- Main article: The Burning Bridge
On a special mission for the Rangers, Will, his friend Horace, an apprentice knight, and the Ranger Gilan travel to a neighboring country, Celtica. They discover that all the villagers are gone. Will and Horace wonder if all the villagers have been slain or captured, but Gilan thinks that the evil Lord Morgarath finally devised a plan to cross the mountain pass. If that were true, and the King wasn't warned, the country would be destroyed. Gilan goes to warn the King, and Will and Horace begin to follow a straggling Wargal force. On their way they come across Evanlyn, who claims to be a maid to an Araluen lady. When the three of them follow the Wargals they discover that a bridge is in the process of being built across The Fissure. Can the three stop Morgarath's plan from taking place?
The Icebound Land
- Main article: The Icebound Land
Will and Evanlyn are bound for Skandia as the captives of the fearsome Skandian wolfship captain, Erak.
Halt has sworn to rescue Will, and he will do anything to keep his promise - even defy his King. Expelled from the Rangers, Halt is joined by Horace as he travels through Gallica towards Skandia.
On their way, they are constantly challenged by freelance knights - otherwise known as thieving thugs. Horace knows a thing or two about combat, though, and he soon begins to attract the attention of knights and warlords for miles around with his uncanny skill.
But will they be in time to rescue Will from a life of slavery?
Oakleaf Bearers/The Battle For Skandia
- Main article: Oakleaf Bearers
On the way to find Will, Halt and Horace have also been tracking the small party of Temujai, a fierce, nomadic tribe of horse warriors from the east.
Will is overjoyed to be reunited with his mentor and his best friend, and together they rescue Evanlyn; however, the occasion is not as happy as it could have been as Halt realizes that the Temujai they discovered are only the scouts for a massive invasion force. The Skandians have no chance, unless they accept the help of their sworn enemies from Araluen.
The Sorcerer in the North
- Main article: The Sorcerer in the North
Five years have passed since the Skandians and the Araluans made their treaty, and Will has finally become a Ranger, with his own fief to look after. He soon learns that even sleepy little island fiefs have problems enough to keep Will on his toes.
Soon, Will and his old friend Alyss are thrown into a terrifying new adventure, investigating the truth behind rumors of sorcery in a remote northern fief.
As he stands in Grimsdell Forest, hearing eerie voices and seeing the horrific figure of the Night Warrior looming in the fog, Will asks himself if sorcery really exists or if there is some other explanation.
The Siege of Macindaw
- Main article: The Siege of Macindaw
In this desolate northern fief, Will tries to gather the fighting men he needs to overcome Sir Keren and his band of criminals. Across the border, fierce Scotti warriors are waiting for the signal that Castle Macindaw is in friendly hands to launch a full scale invasion of Araluen.
With the arrival of an old friend, Will has to try to stop Sir Keren and rescue the imprisoned Alyss.
( This book takes place prior to the Sorcerer in the North)
- Main article: Erak's Ransom
When Erak, the Skandian Oberjarl, is taken hostage during a raid on the desert lands to the south of the Constant sea, a few of his men escape, including Erak's second in command, Svengal. Halt and Will must go with the Svengal to deliver the ransom and secure Erak's freedom, but a royal presence is needed, too. The Princess Cassandra, who Will knows as Evanlyn, persuades her father to let her go with them.
Horace and the Ranger Gilan round out the group to make sure that Evanlyn is well protected, but there are still the threats of violent sandstorms, warring tribes, and danger every where that may keep them from reaching Erak in time to secure his release.
The Kings of Clonmel
- Main article: The Kings of Clonmel
Will is at the annual Ranger Gathering but Halt is investigating mysterious happenings in the west. When he does finally return, it's with bad news.
Hibernia is in turmoil.
A religious cult calling themselves The Outsiders are sowing confusion and sedition, and five of the six Hibernian kingdoms have been undermined. Now the sixth, Clonmel, is in danger. Halt, Will and Horace set out to restore order.
Can the secrets of Halt's past help them in their mission?
- Main article: Halt's Peril
Are the extraordinary archery skills of Will and Halt enough to save them during a duel with the assassins...or is Will's mentor facing his last battle?
The Emperor of Nihon-Ja
- Main article: The Emperor of Nihon-Ja
Horace is missing, it has been months since he was sent out on a military mission to the court of the Emperor Nihon-Ja but he has failed to return.
Evanlyn is worried and with the company of Will and Alyss she sets out to discover what has happened to their old friend.
They discover that Horace has become embroiled in Nihon-Jan politics.
The arrogent Senshi Arisaka has rebelled against the rightful Emperor and Horace has chosen to stay behind and help the deposed ruler. Now he and Will must find warriors willing to fight against the highly trained Senshi warriors, whilst Alyss and Evanlyn must overcome their long-standing rivalry to seek aid from the mysterious group of mountain dwellers called the Hassanu.
The Lost Stories
- Main article: The Lost Stories
The eleventh book in the international best-selling Ranger's Apprentice series features several stories which take place in various times throughout the series.
Everyone knows the legends of the Rangers of Araluen. But no one has heard the whole story—until now.
Has Halt told Will the truth about how Will became an orphan? Did Gilan track down Morgarath's lieutenant after the battle of Three Step Pass? Is there to be a royal wedding—or will tragedy strike first?
Inspired by questions and letters sent by his loyal readers, John Flanagan answers all your burning questions about the world of the Rangers.
The Royal Ranger
- Main article: The Royal Ranger
This is the title of the twelfth and final book in the Ranger's Apprentice series.
The story that brings the Ranger's Apprentice arc full-circle!
Will Treaty has come a long way from the small boy with dreams of knighthood. Life had other plans for him, and as an apprentice Ranger under Halt, he grew into a legend—the finest Ranger the kingdom has ever known.
Yet Will is facing a tragic battle that has left him grim and alone. To add to his problems, the time has come to take on an apprentice of his own, and it’s the last person he ever would have expected. Fighting his personal demons, Will has to win the trust and respect of his difficult new companion—a task that at times seems almost impossible.
John Flanagan returns for one final bow to the series that has conquered millions of readers worldwide with this pulse-pounding adventure that brings one era to a close, and ushers in the next. . . .
Notes and References
|Books in the Ranger's Apprentice Series|