Saturday, November 9, 2013

Will in Scarlet, by Matthew Cody

As heir to Shackley house and family legacy, young Will leads a fairly calm life while his father is off fighting in the crusades with the King.  But when the King is away, the kingdom is targeted by traitors who want to take over control.  Will is driven out of his home, and joins a band of merry bandits in the middle of Sherwood Forest.

I am always a fan of writers taking something familiar and re-imagining it, particularly when it is done well.  I love how this book takes the traditional Robin Hood mythos and adds a new twist to it.  I felt like this book actually made the Robin Hood characters seem more real.  Over the years, the tale has gotten sanitized and Disneyfied.  Now this author spins a story that, while fiction, may just be a more accurate version than anyone realizes.

I really liked the character development.  My favorite character was Much, the miller's daughter, and Will of course.  I also liked that although Robin does play a part in this story, he is not the heroic figure that we imagine, and he is not the focus of the story.Will really drives the story, and everyone else is a supporting actor.

The book is aimed toward middle grades/young adult readers, and I think equally appealing to male and female readers.  Kids interested in history and classic literature will be most interested in this book.  

I received a review copy courtesy of NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

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