Ranger’s Apprentice: The Ruins of Gorlan

gorlanI haven’t been so engrossed in a book since I devoured the Hunger Games trilogy in a matter of days. However, Ranger’s Apprentice became the second book to have captured my attention so much I literally wanted to just rush home from work and read.  The plot of the book seemed to tick off the boxes of things I look for in a book and it never lost its way.The underdog finds a purpose, a thrilling chase takes on life-or-death stakes, and ultimately we learn that heroes are usually the people we least suspect and they typically don’t plan to be a hero.  I typically don’t like to read books that are type-written for specific genders.  However, I will say that sometimes a book does it so subtly that it’s hard for me not to be taken in by it.  This book is definitely a “guy” book in the sense that it understands what young adult guys are looking for in a book and crafts a story that addresses their needs.

I will admit, even as much as I liked it, this book was oddly absent of women. Yes, there’s a few female characters in the beginning and they return at the end. It reminded me a lot of the Lord of the Rings and the absence of female characters. Part of wonders if it’s because the book is set in the Medieval and due to historical constraints there weren’t a lot of women who were becoming Rangers. On the other hand, I’m thinking that since this book is fantasy, why can’t there be more women? At the same time, I will at least acknowledge that there weren’t the stock female archetypes we often see in fantasy and I was grateful for that. I’m curious to see how the series continues and if the lack of female characters will be addressed.  I’m also curious to know what you all think.  Is it “ok” for a book to have an absence of either gender?


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