Despite the 13-year time gap between the writing of "Ratha's Challenge" and this, "Ratha's Courage" does an excellent job of keeping the characters' personalities intact, evolving lesser characters, and introducing new ones, all while carrying you through an exciting and highly original plot. Probably due to the influence of more modern styles of writing, Clare Bell's writing voice has changed a bit, but not at all for the worse. I enjoyed this just as much as the others in the series and I hope she writes another book soon, be it about Ratha or something else.
Here I offer a maturity warning. It's nothing graphic at all, but if you're sensitive to slight sexual themes then you might want to stay away. They play a major part in said 'highly original plot'. Not in a bad way, but I just want to warn wary readers.