The Necromancer is the fourth book in a series. So not one I would recommend jumping directly into. These are not stand alone books. The series starts with The Alchemyst, then The Magician, then the Sorceress (links are to my reviews).
The first book I found free for kindle (it is no longer free). The last three I have purchased. I am a fan of a lot of Young Adult fantasy books. In many ways I think that without the sex and language, a writer needs to be more focused. These books do have violence and the kids are allowed to be real kids, but the language is fairly clean and there is not even the hint of sex.
This series focuses on teenage twins (a boy and a girl) that might be the fulfillment of prophesy. They find they can do magic and get swept up in a fight among the “Elders” that might destroy our world and all of humanity. It is pretty standard stuff, but the writing is good and there is great use of historical characters that have become immortal. Shakespeare, Nicholas Flamel, Machiavelli, Joan of Arc and many others make large or small appearances.
I think this is the weakest of the four book so far. It is time for one of the main characters to make some bad decisions and get swept up into the dark side of the battle. This is the Anakin Skywalker and Edward (from Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe) moment. It is hard to justify bad decisions sometimes and this is a case where I do not think the justification really warrants the bad decision.
This was also a book that just did not seem to move the story along. Up until this point the books have flown by. There were 300-400 pages but only 24 to 36 hours of time. This time it was about a week and it felt like a week.
I would say the books are appropriate for someone as young as 12 or 13 (depending on reading level) up to about 17 (or 37, whatever).
I have not heard when the fifth book comes out (the Necromancer only came out in May). Michael Scott’s website says that there are two more planned books coming out sometime in 2011 and 2012. Update: My review of book five, I think the best of the series so far.