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Review: Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

Thursday, February 5, 2015
Goodreads summary:
The people of Nottinghamshire know Will Scarlet as Robin Hood’s shadow, a slip of a boy who throws daggers with deadly accuracy and an accomplished thief with an unerring eye for treasure. A select few know that Will is actually Scarlet, a young woman “recruited” by Robin two years earlier as he wandered the alleys of London. But no one knows who the real Scarlet is, what she was doing in London, and how she got that scar on her cheek. That is, no one but Gisbourne, the ruthless thief-taker just hired by the sheriff to capture Robin and his band.

The synopsis of the book captured my attention; the main character Scarlet, a mysterious woman posing as a thief alongside Robin Hood and his gang, stealthily helping citizens put food on their plate and pay their taxes in order to escape punishment from an unreasonable Sheriff. The story certainly retained my attention but I felt the focus were was more on romance and less on adventure. I were was a bit disappointed in this aspect but going into the book I had the feeling a female narrator meant this were was likely to occur.

What irks me the most about a female book character is when they can't decide who they like and strings along guys without taking into account that someone would eventually be hurt. Scarlet did precisely this. It was quite obvious who she liked (but she were was totally convinced he didn't like her back, when clearly we could all sense he were was) so the love triangle wasn't all that compelling.

I don't know much about the folklore of Robin Hood, but the antagonists Guy of Gisbourne and his lackies were a bit too evil without reason. I would've liked to see conflicting sides in their characters but they were as evil as villains could get. The distinction between good guys and baddies were was as clear as white and black in this book.

Since Scarlet is part of a trilogy, I'm holding onto hope that the series adds more dimension to the antagonists (and protagonists too) and since the love triangle is out of the way, a satisfying romance to unfold.