Sunday, July 29, 2012

Librarian's Pick of the Week: Scarlet

Title: Scarlet
Author: A.C. Gaughen
Genre: Historical Fiction
Published: 2012
Age: 12+

Synopsis: Many readers know the tale of Robin Hood, but they will be swept away by this new version full of action, secrets, and romance. Posing as one of Robin Hood's thieves to avoid the wrath of the evil Thief Taker Lord Gisbourne, Scarlet has kept her identity secret from all of Nottinghamshire. Only the Hood and his band know the truth: the agile thief posing as a whip of a boy is actually a fearless young woman with a secret past. Helping the people of Nottingham outwit the corrupt Sheriff of Nottingham could cost Scarlet her life as Gisbourne closes in. It's only her fierce loyalty to Robin--whose quick smiles and sharp temper have the rare power to unsettle her--that keeps Scarlet going and makes this fight worth dying for.

Review: She has many names. Most know her as Will Scarlett and think she's a lad. Robin the Hood calls her Scar a nickname, yes, but perhaps he refers to the scar on her cheek. Then there is her real name, and that she tells no one. A part of Robin's band, Scar is quick with a knife, light on her feet, and always ready for a challenge, whether it involves nicking bread for the villagers or rescuing a poor soul about to be hanged. Haunted by what happened to her and her older sister in London, she knows that her soul is black, which may be why she won't return the affection of John Little. Or is it because of the feelings she buries and reburies for Robin? When the Sheriff of Nottingham hires Guy of Gisbourne to catch Robin, Scar is terrified. Gisbourne is at the heart of her trouble, and she knows he will recognize her by her unusual moonstonelike eyes. Debut novelist Gaughen does more than offer a rip-roaring tale, though it is that. The story, told in Scar's distinctive first-person voice, captivates and gets readers as deeply into the heart of a troubled girl as into the labyrinth of Sherwood Forest. Though some tightening would have helped the flow (a few rescues wouldn't have been missed), this has plenty for both the romantic and the adventure lover. An affecting take on an old story. - Booklist

If you're intrigued, don't forget to check our library's catalog for this book!


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