I'm reviewing A New Beginning for The Ranger's Apprentice: The Royal Ranger Blogger Reread Campaign (Review)

I'm joining in a reread campaign in celebration of the third book in Ranger's Apprentice:
The Royal Ranger series, Duel at Araluen, being released. Today's post is a review of book
one, A New Beginning (previously The Royal Ranger, book 12 in Ranger's Apprentice).

A New Beginning
(Rangers Apprentice: The Royal Ranger #1)
By John Flanagan
Middle Grade Fantasy
Hardcover, Audiobook, Paperback & ebook, 464 Pages
November 5th 2013 by Philomel Books


From #1 New York Times bestselling author John Flanagan comes the story that brings the Ranger's Apprentice series full-circle and ushers in a brand new arc starring Maddie, the Royal Ranger!

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: Princess Madelyn, the daughter of Princess Cassandra. Will has to win the trust and respect of his difficult new companion—a task that at times seems almost impossible.

John Flanagan returns to conclude the series that has conquered millions of readers worldwide with this pulse-pounding adventure that brings one era to a close, ushers in the next, starting the series anew starring Maddie, the Royal Ranger.

For fans of Tolkien, Redwall, Game of Thrones, and T.H. White, Ranger's Apprentice delivers fantasy-adventure thrills with real-world historical details.

(Affiliate links included.)

The Red Fox Clan
(Rangers Apprentice: The Royal Ranger #2)
By John Flanagan
Middle Grade Fantasy
Hardcover, Audiobook, Paperback & ebook, 352 Pages
August 21st 2018 by Philomel Books


#1 New York Times bestselling author John Flanagan returns to the world of Ranger's Apprentice, continuing the story arc starring fan favorites, Will and Maddie (The Royal Ranger: A New Beginning).

Picking up where The Royal Ranger: A New Beginning left off, this next installment continues the story arc featuring young apprentice, Maddie, and the student-turned-master, Will Treaty. The time has come for the next generation to assume the mantle and become protectors of the kingdom of Araluen.

After passing her third-year assessment as a ranger's apprentice, Maddie is called home to Castle Araluen. Forced to keep her ranger training a secret, Maddie feels trapped by the monotony of castle life and longs to find a way out. But there are whisperings of a new threat to the kingdom. The mysterious Red Fox Clan, a group of anarchists all donning fox masks, have threatened Castle Araluen and question Princess Cassandra and Madelyn's succession to the throne. Will they succeed in unseating Cassandra and Madelyn and take the throne for themselves?

Bestselling author of the Ranger's Apprentice and Brotherband series, John Flanagan returns in the captivating follow-up to The Royal Ranger: A New Beginning. Perfect for fans of Tolkien, Redwall, and Game of Thrones!

(Affiliate links included.)

Duel at Araluen
(Rangers Apprentice: The Royal Ranger #3)
By John Flanagan
Middle Grade Fantasy
Hardcover, Audiobook & ebook, 320 Pages
May 28th 2019 by Philomel Books


International bestselling author John Flanagan returns to world of Ranger's Apprentice in this new installment of the Royal Ranger series starring Maddie, Will Treaty's fearless young apprentice.

King Duncan and Princess Cassandra are trapped in the south tower of Castle Araluen and under near-constant attack from the Red Fox Clan. Sir Horace and Ranger Commandant Gilan are holed up in an old hill fort, surrounded by the enemy. And Ranger's apprentice Maddie is the only one who can save them all.

With the help of Hal, Thorn, and the rest of the Heron brotherband, Maddie will have to break her father and his men out of the hill fort, but will they reach Castle Araluen in time?

International bestselling author of the Ranger's Apprentice and Brotherband series, John Flanagan returns in the captivating next installment of the Royal Ranger series: The Royal Ranger: Duel at Araluen. Perfect for fans of J.R.R. Tolkien, Brian Jacques's Redwall, and George R.R. Martin's Game of Thrones!

(Affiliate links included.)

My Review of A New Beginning (Book One)

NEW BEGINNING is a fantastic ending to the Ranger's Apprentice series and a fabulous beginning to the new branch-off series, The Royal Ranger! Fans of the old series will find much to love here and those new to the series will be able to start here if they'd like. With a likable leading heroine, friendship, danger, and a mission to fulfill set in the Ranger's Apprentice world, it is sure to entertain from beginning to end.

I knew from the first couple of pages that I was going to enjoy this book. If you love fantasy with stealthy, highly trained characters (called rangers in this series), with a protagonist who has some good character development, and a climatic ending full of danger, then this book is for you! I did have a little confusion when the situation is set up with Maddie as I haven't read the other books in the original Ranger's Apprentice series (we have them and my son is a huge fan, so I do plan on rectifying that), but my confusion didn't last long as the story turned its focus on Maddie and Will. From there on I pretty much loved every single minute. I'm excited to move on to book two and find out what happens next to these characters I have come to love.

In the end, was it what I wished for? If you're a fantasy fan and haven't started the Ranger's Apprentice series, or have but haven't read The Royal Ranger series, you can start here. I loved it and highly recommend it to middle graders, teens, and adults alike!

Content: Some violence.
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, which did not require a positive review nor affect my review in any way.

About the Author

John Flanagan grew up in Sydney, Australia, hoping to be a writer. John began writing Ranger’s Apprentice for his son, Michael, ten years ago, and is still hard at work on the series and its spinoff, Brotherband Chronicles. He currently lives in the suburb of Manly, Australia, with his wife. In addition to their son, they have two grown daughters and four grandsons.

Are you a Ranger's Apprentice fan? Have you begun this branch-off series?

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