I received this book for free from my own shelves in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Escape From Falaise by John Flanagan
Genres: Action, Adventure, Fiction, Historical
Published by Philomel Books on November 2, 2021
Source: my own shelves
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Also by this author: Scorpion Mountain, The Tournament at Gorlan, The Ghostfaces, "The Beast From Another Time", The Caldera, The Red Fox Clan, Duel at Araluen, Return of the Temujai, The Missing Prince
Fifth in The Royal Ranger action adventure historical fiction series for Young Adult readers as a spin-off from The Ranger’s Apprentice series and revolving around Maddie, princess and ranger-apprentice. The focus is on Maddie, Will Treaty, Halt, and Sir Horace.
This is the second half of The Missing Prince, 4, using third person global subjective point-of-view since we experience events, emotions, and thoughts from the perspectives of a number of characters.
A good bit of the story focuses on Will and Maddie circumventing the baron, as he tries to get them to work for him. That Ranger training sure is good, and it highlights the difference between Maddie and Giles!
I had to appreciate how Flanagan managed to slip in that zipline as well as the telephone can set-up. As for Stamper holding the Ranger horses in a certain respect, oh yes, lol, smart horse.
Duncan and his fellow Araluens are nice people. Too nice, although the decision Duncan made in The Missing Prince shows his political acumen.
It’s not hard to understand why everyone in Falaise hates Lassigny. His wife certainly gets it, lol. Armand is just as “loved”, and that duel is a right crack-up what with Maddie’s techniques and the audience’s “appreciation”.
There are quite a few references to previous stories from The Ranger’s Apprentice series, although it isn’t necessary to read the original series to appreciate this tale.
It’s a heckuva lot of action and adventure with just enough tension to make this a fun read. And parents will appreciate what Sir Horace is dealing with. Ya gotta let your kids grow up.
Well, okay, I guess ya have to be a good parent because I don’t think Giles will ever grow up. It’s an ending that keeps ending . . . you’ll see what I mean, lol. And you’ll be laughing through all but one, for that last one sums up Horace’s lack of interest.
Ya gotta give it to Maddie, Will, Halt, and Horace . . . They never give up.
. . . I do wonder if Ramon will show up somewhere.
The plan to rescue the prince of Gallica has gone horribly wrong and Will Treaty and Maddie are being held captive at the Chateau des Falaise in Gallica. The dangerous baron Lassigny is intent on keeping them — and the prince — no matter what. But Will and Maddie are determined to escape.
Part of their plan is a dangerous challenge to another knight, to counter the threats of the arrogant baron, escape a death sentence, and still rescue the prince, which will require that the Rangers use all the tools of their trade to save themselves, and save the day.
As Maddie Regale, she’s a Ranger of Araluen who rides Bumper. As Maddie Altman she’s a princess of Araluen and second in line to the throne. She’s apprenticing under Will Treaty, the Ranger who rides Tug.
Castle Araluen is . . .
. . . where Duncan is king as well as Maddie’s grandfather. Sir Horace Altman of Redmont is the Oakleaf Knight of Araluen, the commander of the Araluen army and the king’s son-in-law, married to Princess Cassandra. Yep, Maddie is their daughter. Stamper is Horace’s battlehorse. Lord Anthony is the king’s chamberlain and master spy. Bedford is part of the guard.
Gilan is the commander of the King’s Rangers. Halt had been the previous commander who had trained Will; now he’s a senior Ranger and part of the king’s circle of advisors. Abelard is Halt’s Ranger pony. The Wolftail is the Skandian duty ship at Tilmouth. Jens Wavechaser is her skirl. Petter is the ship’s boy who has heard the stories.
La Lumiere is . . .
. . . where King Philippe of Gallica lives. Queen Angelique is Giles’ mother. The wimpy Prince Giles is their son and the hostage of Lassigny. Prince Louis is his uncle. Sir Guillaume is the gate marshal.
Michel du Mont runs an inn in Entente where Will and Maddie had entertained in The Missing Prince. It’s the same village where they encountered Vincent, the leader of the Black Vultures.
Chateau des Falaise is . . .
. . . Baron Lassigny‘s base. His wife is a mean one. Nicolas is the baron’s scribe. Sir Gaston is the seneschal. Armand is the nasty commander of the castle garrison. Sergeant Ramon is in charge of a detail of guards, More guards include Gaspard Allende and Hercule Lombard. Marius is the perverted jailor with one fear.
Old Tomkin is a beggar at the castle. Sir Wilhelm of Starkhaus is a knight with the Tuetlandic court. Ahem.
The Cover and Title
The cover is a contrast between the white and blue bright sky over the castle of Falaise on an angle with Maddie’s bow. For it is Maddie in her Ranger’s cloak and a burgundy top with leather bracers, green trousers, and black knee-high boots, a quiver of arrows at her hip. She’s sitting on Bumper as she pulls her bow, arrow at the ready. All the series info is at the top starting at the top of the central tower. The main info is in white with a black outline with the subseries info in an orangey yellow also outlined in black skimming the top of Maddie’s head. The title is in white with a black outline just below Bumper’s neck, followed by an info blurb, and then the author’s name in that same orange-yellow outlined in black at the bottom.
The title is the story’s aim, to Escape From Falaise.