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Publisher's Summary

Posing as one of Robin Hood's thieves to avoid the evil Lord Gisbourne, Scarlet has kept her identity secret from all of Nottinghamshire. Only Big John and Robin Hood know the truth - that the agile thief posing as a whip of a boy is actually a fearless young woman with a secret past. It's getting harder to hide as Gisbourne's camp seeks to find Scarlet and drive Robin Hood out of Nottinghamshire. But Scarlet's instinct for self-preservation is at war with a strong sense of responsibility to the people who took her in when she was on the run, and she finds it's not so easy to turn her back on her band and townspeople. As Gisbourne draws closer to Scarlet and puts innocent lives at risk, she must decide how much the people of Nottinghamshire mean to her, especially John Little, a flirtatious fellow outlaw, and Robin, whose quick smiles and temper have the rare power to unsettle Scarlet. Full of exciting action, secrets, and romance, this imaginative retelling of the classic tale will have listeners following every move of Robin Hood and band of thieves.

©2012 A.C. Gaughen (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

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Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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Story

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  • Susie
  • Santa Cruz, CA, United States
  • 03-02-15

Gender Bending in Sherwood Forrest

Action, romance, and gender-bending in medieval England; Scarlet is satisfying in every way.

When my daughter was three, she was swept up in the legend of Robin Hood. She dressed up in green and shot imaginary arrows all through the house. She thought nothing of playing a “boy” character. By the time she was four, she’d learned enough at pre-school to know that the only place in the Robin Hood story for girls, was as Maid Marion: waiting.

But Scarlet is waiting for no one. She's on the run from the malevolent Lord Gisbourne and has joined Robin Hood's Merry Men as a boy. Nobody but Robin and Big John knows her secret.

Scarlet can take care of herself. “Rob and John shot daggers at each other. With their eyes, leastways. I’m the only one who shoots real daggers.”

But that doesn’t preclude some tantalizing romantic tension between her and Robin, “'I’ll keep your heart, Scar,' he whispered. 'If you keep mine.'”

Narrated by the honey-voiced Helen Stern, a veteran romance and erotica reader, she brings just the right amount of swagger and vulnerability to our heroine.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Ugh, one of the worst books I've ever heard.

I have a rule, start a book, finish a book. It took all I had to finish this book. This might be the worst book on Audible, in my opinion.

It was like reading Twilight, but with Robin Hood and Little John, instead of Edward and Jacob. And I hated Twilight!

if listening to someone whine for hours is your thing, then you'll love this book. I actually like story, plot and character development. There is none of that here. Even Robin, is reduced to a love sick teenager who can only whine and lash out.

Scarlet, is a whining girl, who can't decide if she wants to be a boy or a girl. But when anyone tries to talk to her or interact with her, she blows up at them and storms off. Then complains for 10 minutes about how no one understands her.

I actually found myself pulling for the villans, just so that the story would end. I'm glad I didn't waste a credit on this book. Thankfully, I got it on sale .

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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One of my favorite reads of the year!

Scarlet is one of those books, that for me, needs to be listened to on audiobook – the improper grammar was so distracting that I just couldn’t see it, read it, and have it not be like a flashing red stoplight in my face. Just like with Blood Red Road, if this is too much of a distraction for you, try the audiobook. Once you get past the grammar, the story itself of Scarlet is a very good one. I really enjoyed hearing about Scarlet’s dangerous missions to break people out of prison and it was actually fun to read a retelling of a story that I know so well but with some new characters that I couldn’t quite remember (BUT LOVED). Yes, it was a little slow in the beginning but once it got going, it really got going.

I did think Scarlet (the character), at times, was a little annoying with her independent ways but this book is definitely one of my favorites reads for this year. I think fans of retellings will especially enjoy it.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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An Authentic Robin Hood story

Would you consider the audio edition of Scarlet to be better than the print version?

I've not read the print yet -- was instead entranced by the narrator's excellent handling of the dialect. I'm waiting for the sequel - hopefully by the same narrator, and that's saying a lot since I'm not usually one to choose audio over print.

What did you like best about this story?

I love Robin Hood stories -- and have read many good ones. This one took a different point of view, with Robin not being the main character, but was enjoyable none the less, with action and wit (though Scarlet carries a fair amount of anger and angst throughout)

Have you listened to any of Helen Stern’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, I haven't, but would gladly hear some others done by her.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Sherwood -- home of the original Hunger Games (sorry - that was a bad one but couldn't come up with anything else)

Any additional comments?

I didn't always like Scarlet. She's a hard character, prickly and fairly nasty to some. I'm also not completely fond of the standard "romantic triangle" plot, though with Gisbourne around it stretches beyond a triangle. But her internal struggles are very authentic, and her courage is undeniable. As it was just a start, I'm hoping that things look up for her in the future.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Too much teenage angst

When I want to hear angst, I listen to Nirvana. This book could have been a fun retelling of Robin Hood, but I couldn't get past all the teenage girl drama. Good thing this wasn't a drinking game because I'd be drunk from the amazing number of times the lead character said there was "water" in her eyes or on her face. And tears.

The book shows promise, it just needs a lead character who isn't always fighting, angry, ready to die, or crying. There are other ways to show character weaknesses, but having her cry a the time when she's not fighting is a good place to start.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amy
  • JOSHUA, TX, United States
  • 12-29-16

A little life breathed into an old tale

Scarlet successfully had me caring about old characters & old stories like they were new & fresh.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Took some getting used to, but it was great!

The dialect took some getting used to, but once I got used to it, the story was good. I liked the characters and how they interact with eachother. A fun twist on the story of Robin Hood.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Love It

I love this version of a Robin Hood retelling. I would definitely recommend to everyone

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Amazing

It took me a while to actually buy it, which was why I put it on my wish list. I was still undecided about it, and when I did buy it and started in, I nearly regretted my decision. Then I regretted NOT GETTING IT SOONER. This book is and unexpected expected unexpected surpise, (those who have read countless amounts of books, and some of those books that are of this sort, will know exactly what I mean by these words). I've already bought the next book, and now that I think about, it I don't regret buying this book sooner because now I can read the next books without a wait ;)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great Narrator

The narration for this novel was awesome. It gets a little hokey that the characters are too dense to be able to read their friends they spend all their time with, so it feels very YA, but I always want to see more robin hood variations.

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  • Elizabeth
  • 08-21-13

Great story, good narrator

Was a refreshing read compared to a lot of YA novels out as I felt I hand't heard the story 10 times before and who doesn't love robin hood? Strong female lead who isn't annoying with a swoon worthy hero.