EDITOR’S NOTE: This article contains minor spoilers for RANGER’S APPRENTICE: THE ROYAL RANGER – A NEW BEGINNING.
Since 2010, the tagline of “the final chapter” has been touted out multiple times for John Flanagan’s expansive YA fantasy series. And yet, it still has continued strong, delivering new and well-received entries on a nearly annual basis with the nearest release being Duel at Araulenon May 28th. Sure, it has made author John Flanagan a sizable sum of cash, but what about the characters of his world? Is the end truly in sight or is it all just smoke and mirrors to a series that will effectively be endless?
After completing an advanced copy of Duel at Araulen, courtesy of Penguin Random House for this blog tour, excluding spoilers, it’s safe to say that there are definitely directions that Flanagan could take the series, even if one is not immediately set in stone in the newest entry. It leaves the door wide open to new adventures and never offers any sense of finality, a characteristic that will be further discussed in a review next week. So could Flanagan continue the series past Duel at Araulen? Absolutely.
For fear of spoiling recent entries, any speculation of the actual content of potential books in the future will not be included in this discussion. Firstly, Flanagan recently began a series titled “The Early Years,” with currently two installments under its belt. However, this series has been on a stalemate for quite some time, most likely a result of Flanagan directing his attention towards the ”Royal Ranger” series. So consequently, a third entry to this prequel series definitely isn’t out of the question. In addition, there never has to be any sense of finality as prequels, especially dated far out from the mainline series’ events, could be an endless source of continuations for the series.
In addition, Flanagan could also pull a move similar to that of Christopher Paolini who, in between his admittedly massive entries, releases companion books or even short story collections, with The Fork, the Witch, and the Worm being the most recent examples. This most likely couldn’t serve as a feasible career plan for years on end, but should keep most readers entertained as a genuine release, either from “The Early Years” or “The Royal Ranger,” is prepared.
Speaking of which, the hea