Review: Scarlet

Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen
Release Date ~ February 14, 2012
Walker Childrens ~ Bloomsbury
ISBN13: 9780802723468
E-galley received from publisher via Net Galley

Goodreads 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.

Scarlet is the kind of book that reminds me why I fell in love with reading in the first place: a brave heroine, a dashing hero, every page bursting with excitement and action, and true love.

I love this book so much- it's an unbelievable retelling and an even better debut. My only real regret is that I believe it's a standalone, but I would love to see A.C. Gaughen revisit this one some time!

  1. Dynamic characters:
    What's really fantastic about A.C.'s retelling is that she takes the familiar characters of Robin Hood and breathes life into them with the story of Scarlet. Will Scarlet is the most obvious one to get a makeover, but even Robin and Little John and Much are given extensive backgrounds and histories. But Scarlet is the one who really shines through, and I think ends up being the most creative stories of the bunch. Yet I truly appreciated how well-developed A.C. ensured her secondary characters were, and the result was truly brilliant. Also, I think this is what makes it such a wonderfully enjoyable retelling.
  2. Scar's mysterious past:
    I spent a good amount of time trying to decipher how the story would turn out, and in particular exactly what happened to Scarlet in her past to influence the young woman she had become. I loved seeing the pieces gradually fall into place, and it really does keep you constantly guessing.
  3. Fast-paced action:
    A.C. writes her action scenes well, and I loved how Robin Hood-esque the fight sequences felt to me. Plus, there's plenty of it to keep the story moving along quickly, and Scar is such a tough girl that I just loved getting to know her.
  4. Relationships:
    I loved, loved, LOVED reading about the friendships between the individuals in the band and Robin's band all together! It was so neat to see how differently they interacted with one another, and how their personalities affected those relationships. But on top of that, I loved seeing some grow closer together, and the romance was totally killer and so emotional to read about. I was happy with how things turned out but it was a painful journey along the way!
I can't stress how much I loved this book- it's one that I can already say I'll be recommending again and again, especially to those who appreciate Medieval based stories. And strong heroines- any one who loves a strong heroine just needs to read Scarlet. This book has such a classic feel to it, and I can easily say it's one of my all-time favourites.

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Amy @ Turn the Page (YA) said...

Amazing review! Its killing me because I pre-ordered this MONTHS ago and it was dispatched over a week ago and seems to have gotten lost in the post :(

I need to read this! I love Robin Hood tales and this has been getting such great reviews!

*crosses fingers it arrives today*

Natalie said...

YAY! I'm so glad you loved this one! Im really excited about it and I hate being disappointed! Loved how you broke down your review :) Now I need to run out and pick up a copy ASAP tomorrow morning! It can be my Valentine's Day gift to myself ahaha

Victoria Scott said...

Ooh, I have this one, but haven't gotten around to it yet. Now I must. Yes, I MUST!

Andrea @ Cozy Up said...

I'm really excited about this one. I love to hear that there is fast paced action. I absolutely loved Robin Hood when I was a kid and was nervous about this one. But your review definitely clears those nerves away! Thanks for that!!

elena said...

I always love retellings and I'm glad this one doesn't disappoint! I'm always super curious about characters with mysterious pasts. It makes me happy to hear you say you love the relationships in the book because that's definitely a big plus for me. Wonderful review, I can't wait to read it tomorrow!

novel sounds

Lexie said...

I LOVE the idea of this one--big big big Robin Hood fan--so I'm glad you liked it! Awesome review. I'll need to pick this one up next time I go to B&N.

ChristasBooks said...

Love loved loved this book! It was so fun to read and so well thought out. Your review sums everything up perfectly.

I will definitely be recommending this one for awhile now.

Unknown said...

Thanks for this review - this is the first that I have seen. I have enjoyed the Robin Hood remakes that I have read recently. Thanks for pointing this one out.

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