Thursday, July 30, 2009

Under the Covers: Hood


TITLE: Hood
AUTHOR: Stephen Lawhead
GENRE: Science Fiction/Legends/Historical Fiction
SUMMARY: The first in a trilogy called King Raven, Hood tells the story of an alternative Robin Hood, a rebel in the deep forests of Wales in 1093. (Lawhead's extensive research convinced him of this premise.) Son of a king, a young man named Bran is made homeless when his father is killed and the kingdom of Elfael becomes a pawn to squabbling Norman factions. A long and fascinating time in the wilderness, in which Bran's faith and health are restored by an old woman of mystical origins, brings him at last to his destiny: leading a band of dauntless archers against the kingdom's usurpers. Robin Hood is born, along with Maid Marian, Friar Tuck, and Little John, in this highly imaginative, earthy adventure that has little to do with Errol Flynn but is just as rousing.*

ROSE'S REVIEW: I love re-imaginings of familiar stories. I love Ten Things I Hate About You (a re-imagining of the Taming of the Shrew), Clueless (Emma) and the BBC productions of Merlin and Robin Hood. So its no surprise that I love Lawhead's Hood. I love that he actually went and did his research and came up with a plausible scenario for the Robin Hood myth. Yes, there is a significant amount of Science Fiction in the novels but i don't mind that so much. The character are really amazing and they have alot of depth. You find yourself rooting for them. I love how Lawhead manages to weave in the names we all love without giving away the Welsh origins of the characters. The characters come off as real people. You actually see them reluctantly making their choices to fight for their country. My only gripe is that this actually a trilogy and the ending leaves you wanting more. Which is probably a good thing for the first book in a trilogy.

GRADE: A


* By John Mort, Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved from Booklist.

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