In Slaves of Socorro, the Heron crew are sent to spend a year helping patrol Araluen While there, a renegade Skanadian captures from Araluens and sells them as slaves Hal and his shipmates must infiltrate the slave market and free the Araluens.This series really continues to impress me There was a lot of great action here, great character development, and just plain fun The inclusion of Gilan brings some needed Araluen flair to the book While there are the crew of Tursgud, the Araluens, and the Socorroians, the story is centermost about the Heron and her crew It was wonderful to see the interaction between Thorn, Lydia, Hal, and the rest The ending was somewhat expected, but done in a completely unexpected way I really enjoyed how the author wrapped up the story with Tursgud.Overall this was a great 5 star book for me, and I m already reading Scorpian Mountain. The Fourth Installment In The New York Times Bestselling Brotherband Series, For Fans Of Lord Of The Rings And Game Of ThronesHal And His Fellow Herons Have Returned Home To Skandia After Defeating The Pirate Captain Zavac And ReclaimingSkandia S Most Prized Artifact,the Andomal With Their Honor Restored, The Herons Turn To A New Mission Tracking Down An Old Rival Turned Bitter Enemy Tursgudleader Of The Shark Brotherband And Hal S Constant Opponenthas Turned From A Bullying Youth Into A Pirate And Slave Trader After Tursgud Captures Twelve Araluen Villagers To Sell As Slaves, The Heron Crew Sails Into Action With The Help Of One Of Araluen S Finest Rangers Just finished this one, and what a good read Some of the good points are that the story is self contained, but will continue on into the next book John Flannagan books for me are all about the journey he takes you on From the nights on the sea, to the planning of rescues, and the interaction between the crew members Each has their place and add to the story.Add in the newest crew member Kloof, and bringing back a familiar face from the Rangers Apprentice I knew it was coming but did not have an idea of who it would be I will admit to be quite pleased with the addition for story wise, but we did not learn really anything new about the ranger yet.Mr Flannagan has also proven at the start of this series and with several of the Ranger books that the missions are dangerous death, injury, and things not going according to plan This one seems to have a lot in terms of bloody battles New stories lines are laid into the book, but the story follows the main path and keeps you hoping for in the next installment.Downfalls of the book I read it way too fast and can lead to a sleepless night.I bought it when it first came out like the others, so I own too many hardcovers instead of paperbacks.Some of the conversations seemed to be missing in the book, which can lead to What about Mr Flannagan has proven not to drop things for the most part although you may have to wait 10 books later for the answer or a Lost Stories to come out.I m going to add my questions or thoughts of things here but you can stop reading as there might be spoilers in the next part.Karina and her send off of Hal and Thorn, seems that it would have had a point of conversation between those two Not about the relationship, but about the way she sent them off Hal had to be kind of disappointed that his mother did not fuss over him as she normally does And would have been one of those conversations for Hal and Stig on those hours of sea to explorer Hal is happy for Thorn, but does not mean he can not get jealous.Lydia the talk with Rollond It very could be that she did not talk with him and just took off This may come back to haunt her later.The banter aboard the ship is a lot serious this time around The crew has grown, but aside from Wulf and Ulf the chatter between the crew is serious in nature But that could be just because I hit the end to a very serious escape and have forgotten all those chats But the crew is chastised a lot it seems They are good at what they do, which in the first of this series they were exploring their abilities and who would be good at what But in this version they come off a little arrogant, and for me this is mostly with Lydia She is the outsider and still finding her place, but she challenges everyone Thorn, Stig, the ranger, Hal Hal seems to have changed the most with the weight of being a Skirl showing a lot.Ophelia I could see her coming back in later stories It would have been nice if Edvin got a dance with her He did help her quite a bit and there would have been some stories shared between them as he worked to heal her And they are not that far apart in age.Erak even as Oberjal, he knows where Hal was headed and the staff and axe were important to him and he can be a little quick to action Erak showing up on the shores Araleun would not be unheard of Hal better find some replacements, several of each otherwise there might be one less member of the Heron.The ranger needs an apprentice, he is moving up in age and the story seems to take place after the Royal Ranger. This is a great book with an interesting plot line.Pros This book combines some of the characters from the previous Ranger s Apprentice series with the new characters from Brotherband in a way that flows well within the story and makes for an interesting plot line The story works well with the previous books, and I enjoyed it just as much as the other books.Cons Certain parts in the story are a little slow and the beginning exposition is a little too long, but overall the story is very entertaining.This book is definitely a fun read and continues the story of the Heron Brotherband on an exciting new adventure. My son loves this series Good clean reading Great storyline Great for reading aloud or by oneself I find him to be an author I can recommend as a homeschool mom One of the few series we collect My husband and I read thru the Ranger s Apprentice series first and have them all Very good. War nicht sicher ob ich dem Buch 4 oder 5 Sterne geben soll.Habe mich jetzt f r 5 entschieden.Grund, sehr interessante Fortsetzung des Buches, u erst gelungener Einfall.Finde diese Reihe besser als die erste Reihe Chroniken von Aralauen 5 STARSI admit that I like to read John A Flanagan Brotherband Chronicles and Ranger Apprentice books I was excited to find this book was releasing today and read it It did not disappoint at all The Heron crew are all familiar characters from other books Hal gets asked to take the duty ship a year service in Araluen.On the way they realize that their old foe is turning mean and becoming a pirate As they rescue a ship he attacked and left to sink.A ranger Gilan comes with a message from the King asking the Heron s crew to the palace before they can leave they find out that Tursgud has raided a nearby village and has taken 12 Araluen s to sell as slaves So Gilan joins the Heron s crew to save 12 and stop Tursgud.Gilan is a familiar character if you have read the Ranger s Apprentice books If not read them they are good.There is one other new character that joins the crew that adds a lot of humor to the story.There is lots of drama, action and humor You are drawn into the story right away and kept their Lots of ship talk but he has a glossery at front of book for reference Good clean story A book for the whole family to read and enjoy.This book could stand alone but is better if you have read the other three books in the series.I know I will be back to buy the next in the series that comes out in Dec.Scorpion Mountain.I bought this on.