In the series he is the only character who is unable to utilize water, earth, or wind spirits. His Aunt uses water spirits to heal and his Uncle uses an earth spirit. Early in the series his Uncle is injured by a large bird type creature that is ridden by a tribe that is considered savage. The boy ends up with the tribe at one point and goes through a rite of passage with a young girl and in the process they awake a Queen creature who eventually attacks the surrounding area. Eventually the boy goes to the big city to attend University and works with the king. It's been several years since I listened to the series and I would love to finish it. Unfortunately it was on my IPod and was stolen and I didn't have a backup of the series. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
This is Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series.
Furycrafting is the ability to use semi-sentient spirits of Water, Earth, Wood, Fire, Air, and Metal. Most people can use all of these spirits to some extent, but have a particular affinity to one or two types. The most powerful crafters are able to use all six types to their full extent.
The primary protagonist, Tavi, is the only person in recorded history ever to have absolutely no Furycrafting ability.
In the first book, Furies of Calderon, Tavi's Uncle Bernard (who has an Earth Fury) is injured by a scouting party from the tribal Marat, who are planning to invade the valley.
Tavi's Aunt Isana has a Water Fury and is a powerful healer.
Tavi is captured by the Marat and undergoes a ceremonial challenge to determine whether or not his people are truly the Marat's enemy. During the challenge, an unknown beast is awakened; later in the series it is discovered that this is a Queen Vord.
Having saved the Calderon Valley from the Marat invasion, Tavi is rewarded with the opportunity to study at the Academy, the finest (and only?) University in Alera.
The second book, Academ's Fury, is set at the Academy. Tavi's patron is the First Lord, the ruler of Alera.