From Goodreads: 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.
My Rating: 3.5 hearts
Thoughts on the Novel: Although I’m not hugely familiar with the story of Robin Hood, I was aware of its basic gist thanks to having watched the Disney version when I was little. You know wasn’t present in that version? Yep, that would be Will Scarlet. So for me, A.C. Gaughen’s Scarlet was an introduction to the character of Will in the form of a female and seeing how that affected her relationship with the Merry Men.
Scarlet was a really complex character; and the more I got to know her, the more I liked her. She’s independent, smart, and knows how to wield knives (which I think is awesome) but is also impulsive, secretive – I kind of guessed her secret pretty early on – and prickly. Though she keeps threatening to walk away from Robin and the Merry Men, she’s totally loyal to the core. I thought Gaughen did a fantastic job of creating Scarlet’s first person voice as I could easily imagine her talking like a medieval peasant in my head.
As for the other characters, I thought Much was interesting but wasn’t too fond of Little John or Robin Hood. I didn’t like how controlling John was with Scarlet once he decided he was interested in her or how Robin only blamed Scarlet for messing the dynamics of their group just because he was jealous of her and John. As well, I thought the later portion of the book featured too much of the drama surrounding the love triangle and would have instead preferred more of the fantasy and action.
The other thing that I didn’t enjoy was the ending since it felt far too open-ended. After finishing Scarlet, I immediately went on Goodreads to see if it was the first book in a series but at this point, it's still listed as a standalone.
Scarlet was released on February 14, 2012 by Walker Childrens.
Comments About the Cover: I love the design, and Scarlet is dressed exactly like how I’d picture a female Merry Man to look like.
In exchange for an honest review, this ARC was received from the publisher (Walker Books for Young Readers) for free via NetGalley.