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Bows Against the Barons

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  58 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
A retelling of the legend of Robin Hood: an adolescent boy joins an outlaw band which harbors resentment of the feudal elite.
Hardcover, 152 pages
Published 1966 by Meredith Press (first published 1934)
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Jan 06, 2015 Emily rated it really liked it
A simple read, but a good one. The author Geoffrey Trease imagines a slightly more realistic Robin Hood and Sherwood forest seen through the eyes of a young lad, Dickon who falls in with them. A somewhat bittersweet ending (if you know the legends of Robin Hood, you'll know the nature of it) but still an enjoyable little read. It's the sort of book I would give to a son one day.
R. G. Nairam
Nov 26, 2016 R. G. Nairam rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: robin-hood, own
Technically, some of the ideas here are interesting but it just wasn't that interesting to read. I also found out afterwards that the author was intentionally working against normal Robin Hood-vibes (basically: WHY WAS EVERYTHING SO HAPPY WHEN THE WORLD SUCKED*) which...worked, but again, didn't make it very enjoyable. I don't read Robin Hood for peasant revolts and castle attacks. It was also weird that all you had to do was hand a peasant armor and voila, they were good at this. ??? I was ...more
Nick Jones
When I was eleven and in my last year of primary school we were supposed to borrow a book from the library each week, read it and then write a review, stating what sort of book it was, outlining the story and saying whether we liked it. There were probably many ways of getting out of it but I did it conscientiously. And I remember all my books were historical adventures and Geoffrey Trease was one of the authors I read (but there was also Henry Treece, to make things confusing). I’m not sure if ...more
Sep 19, 2011 Ariel rated it liked it
Shelves: mg
This is very well written and conjures up the period very well at first. It's exciting and readable. But the author recasts Robin Hood as wanting to rebel against the king and overthrow the English caste system. He even uses the term "workers" for the peasants and the skilled workmen. So I wasn't too surprised to find out that the book had been published in the mid-1930s originally. The political slant of the author led him to more and more anachronisms; I was almost expecting the Merry Men to ...more
Tim Rideout
May 08, 2016 Tim Rideout rated it really liked it
'We shall build the New England, the England of equality and freedom - Merrie England at last!'

I heard Michael Rosen talk about this book many years ago and have wanted to read it since.

Trease wrote this children's novel in the early 1930s and its political context inhabits every page. Trease re-invents Robin as a socialist leader pitted against the tyranny of the rich (Normans and Saxons). His message: the weak enslave themselves and injustice must be fought wherever it is found. Messages that
Apr 28, 2015 Jane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first edition. Trease made many changes to the language in subsequent editions but this one is very much of its time
Pat Griffith
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Jan 24, 2013
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Dec 15, 2008
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Aug 10, 2014
Elaine Mansell
Elaine Mansell rated it it was amazing
May 10, 2012
Vickie Middleton
Aug 12, 2013 Vickie Middleton rated it really liked it
A very frank story looking at the tale of Robin Hood and his not so merrie men
Ann Drew
Ann Drew rated it really liked it
Sep 30, 2013
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Dec 26, 2012
Nongingercat rated it it was ok
Mar 07, 2012
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Aug 23, 2015
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Dec 09, 2013
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Robert Geoffrey Trease (August 11, 1909 - January 27, 1998) was a prolific writer, publishing 113 books between 1934 (Bows Against the Barons) and 1997 (Cloak for a Spy). His work has been translated into 20 languages. His grandfather was a historian, and was one of the main influences towards Trease's work.

He is best known for writing children's historical novels, whose content reflects his insis
More about Geoffrey Trease...

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