I first read ‘The Ruins of Gorlan’ because my daughter insisted. I thoroughly enjoyed the book. Australian author John Flanagan has done a marvelous job painting a rich canvas of medieval fantasy that seems to engross all ages.
The plot gives you context (evil banished villain conscripts monsters to retaliate for past slights against his ruthless cunning), and follows the exploits of our young heroes as they forge their way from awkward children, into a more adult world.
Whilst you get to view their individual exploits through their eyes, you can tell that they are about to rapidly loose their childishness as a larger threat looms over the peace of the kingdom.
The book finds a nice pace between medieval, fantasy, and a coming of age style narrative.
I look forward to reading more of the extensive series.