Syren is the fifth book of the Septimus Heap series by Angie Sage. Before I get into Syren, I'd like to say just a bit about the series in general. For those of you that have never read these books - get them and read them. You won't regret it. The Septimus Heap books are about a young orphaned boy who finds out when he's about ten that (1) he's not really an orphan and (2) he's a wizard. Septimus is actually the seventh son of a seventh son so, according to legend, he's supposed to be a powerful wizard. Septimus becomes the extraordinary wizard's apprentice and from that point on the books focus on Septimus' "training" and the scrapes that he gets into as he grows.
At first, I thought the series was going to be a lot like Harry Potter (young orphaned boy who finds out that he's a wizard) but they ended up being completely different. Yes, both series involve young boys and magic but the Septimus Heap books are more humorous than dark. Also, they are obviously geared towards a slightly younger audience. Angie Sage does an amazing job of using words. These books make me laugh out loud. I have listened to every one of them on audiobooks narrated by Gerard Doyle. Doyle is one of the best narrators out there and does a wonderful job of making the characters come alive.
In Syren, Septimus finds himself stranded on one of the Islands of Syren with his best friend, Beetle, and Princess Jenna and his dragon, Spitfyre. Septimus' brother Nikko and Snorri also end up on the island. Septimus learns that the Syren is involved in a plot to take over the castle and the Wizard Tower and sets out to rescue everyone. This story involves syrens, djinn, cat men, and evil pirates - so there is plenty of adventure for everyone.