Release Date: 03/11/11
There is only one way to become a warrior. Boys are chosen for teams called Brotherbands and must endure months of gruelling battles in the treacherous sea. Hal finds himself the unwilling leader of a band of outcasts, the boys that no one wants. They are small and wiry but what they lack in size, they make up with skill and courage. Now they must battle against the other bands in the ultimate race where there can only be one winner. The icy waters make the sea a treacherous playing field. Especially when - for some - this is anything but a game...
This is the brand new title and a new beginning for a whole new set of main characters within the world of John Flanagan as he concentrates on a band of Skandian boys learning to become sea wolves. As with the other stories it’s about adversity, it’s about friendship and above all else it’s a story where the characters learn to utilise their own sets of skills to aid the group as a whole buoying up the others weaknesses with their own strengths.
Add to this John’s usual style of fast pace with spartanesque prose and a wonderfully simplified explanation about sailing (which to be honest made a lot more sense than a lot of the stuff in adult books) and it was a title that really spoke to fantasy side as the characters within took the reader on a whole new adventure which has a Young Adult David Gemmell type of feel. My only gripe was that there wasn’t a lead female within in much the same way that the roles were fulfilled in the Rangers Apprentice. With luck that will be fixed in the next book which I really can’t wait to read.