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Scarlet #3

Lion Heart

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The eagerly-awaited conclusion to the Scarlet trilogy delivers another action-packed and romance-filled adventure.

Scarlet has captured the hearts of readers as well as the heart of Robin Hood, and after ceaseless obstacles and countless threats, readers will finally find out the fate of the Lady Thief.

Imprisoned by Prince John for months, Scarlet finds herself a long way from Nottinghamshire. After a daring escape from the Prince's clutches, she learns that King Richard’s life is in jeopardy, and Eleanor of Aquitaine demands a service Scarlet can’t refuse: spy for her and help bring Richard home safe. But fate—and her heart—won’t allow her to stay away from Nottinghamshire for long, and together, Scarlet and Rob must stop Prince John from going through with his dark plans for England. They can not rest until he’s stopped, but will their love be enough to save them once and for all?

348 pages, Hardcover

First published May 19, 2015

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About the author

A.C. Gaughen

7 books1,839 followers
I am shamelessly addicted to staying up far too late (it feels like stealing time), diet coke (it burns so good), Scotland (stupid country stole my heart and won't give it back. Interpol has been ineffective for prosecution) and thieves (so I guess I'm not that mad at Scotland).

Want to know more? Just ask!

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 604 reviews
May 20, 2015

"I'll never leave you," he told me, and I felt his arms on me. "As long as you love me, I'll be here, hidden somewhere in your heart."

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I speak repeatedly of my all time favorite series. They have remained the same three since 2012/2013 and not much has touched them. It probably even gets to the point where people are like, yeah, dude, we get it, stop! But I think it speaks volumes when we can say that no other story touches us after 3 years even after reading, what, 100-120 books a year. Think about that. We meet couple after couple, star-crossed lover after star-crossed lover, see perilous scenarios and heart-breaking stories time and again, and yet those three stories can't be touched with a ten foot pole. My point in all this? Nothing has touched my top three favorite series of all time.....except this one. And that, to me, speaks louder than any words could.

What I'm trying to say is that this is now my fourth favorite series of all time. And. That. Is. Huge. You have no idea HOW huge. I don't give away those spots easily. Something has to really claw into me for those spots to be given away, but my darling Rob and Scar have earned it. From their first tortured story to the final heart-wrenching finale, these two have not had it easy.

"Have you..." I drew a breath, trying to find the words. "When did you last-when did you see him?"
He swallowed. "A few weeks ago."
I just looked at him.
"He...he would greatly benefit from hearing you're alive," he told me.
His careful words stabbed me. "He's not doing well," I said.

Book one was the one that got me, if I'm being honest. Actually, the most candid thing I could tell you is that once I finished book one, I was biased beyond compare. I don't think there could be much that would have knocked this series down a peg. Book two, while so strong, didn't touch book one-Gisbourne was a bastard who meddled heavily in their relationship, and we didn't get as much one on one Rob and Scar time. So, naturally, I'd be pissy about that. But it's more than that. From the moment we met them in book one, they only had eyes for one another...but they sure as hell wouldn't admit it. Risking their lives to save one another, sacrificing all they had, doing all they could to keep the other alive-Come on, that's a prime fucking story, guys. Action, conflicted and convoluted feelings, self-loathing, despair, a tortured (And I mean the best kind of tortured) hero, and a non-stop plot, I couldn't breathe. So, yes, I was hooked from the beginning.

That's not to say these last two didn't have strong points, they did, but the first will always hold a very special place deep in my heart-after all, it got me addicted to this series, right?

In this story, Rob and scar are separated by the hands of Little John after I think I had imagined the beginning of this book being different, but by them being apart for a little bit, the love they had for one another grew with each passing page, even as each day became harder than the last. My desperation to see Rob became this obsession, the rumors going around about Scar's death causing me to panic for dear Rob's sanity, seeing as he has been through so much and all he wants is her-No matter what. At all costs. He knows, in his heart, that there is no way she's dead-So, her knowing this, she pulls a Scarlet and tries to make an escape so Little John isn't lead to Nottingham, where Rob resides as She knows he would risk life and limb and burn down every town to save her, because his love for her is that strong. But what happens when running only makes things worse?

I pulled away from her.
He will die.
Rob's face, frozen like , with shock and sudden knowing, like he could see Death creeping toward him over my shoulder.
He will die.
Blood running out of Rob like a swollen spring river gone red.
He will die.
Rob's blood staining the snow, staining the stones in the courtyard, staining my eyes.

This was a love story through and through. There was a lot of strategizing and tons of destruction, but through it all it was Rob and Scar still fighting and finding a way to ultimately be together. Rob was loyal, self-sacrificing, and perfect in this final installment. He took my breath away with his looks and love for Scar more than once. I was telling a friend yesterday that, yes, no one will ever take my number one BBF spot away, that spot is closed and vacuum sealed, but if these guys were real, and I had to choose one to marry, I really think Rob is that guy. I KNOW. That's a bold statement coming from ME, but think about it: Heroic, tortured, self-sacrificing, loyal, kind, jealous, protective, and not a supernatural being...though, there's an argument for those guys, too. And after I said it of course I was like, 'Wellllll, but what about...', so I am flighty about that. But, the point is, I said it. I thought it. Rob is a hero first and foremost, but Scarlet is his one and only, and his fierce and undying love and devotion to her makes it hard to breathe. If the writing isn't for you in this series, that's fine, but don't go through life not meeting my dear, loyal Rob.

I pushed him back with a grin. "Posturing braggart, show-off peacock!" I accused.
"If by that you mean I'm the best damn archer you've ever seen and you'd like to reward me with a kiss," he said, drawing me back to him. "Then I accept. And yes, I will continue to give you generous lessons to achieve my epic-nay, legendary-skill."

The writing were was the same as always with it's fun (though, in book one it took some getting used to, I thought it was a typo!) substitutions of 'were' instead of 'was' with a quick pace and vivid imagery. After I became accustomed to the style of speak in book one, I really came to adore Gaughen's writing. It is addicting and flows seamlessly from page to page, making this an uputdownable page turner. So, while this style is a shock at first, it immediately becomes addicting in a way you would never imagine. I wouldn't pass this one up because of that, but who am I to say? I already told you I'm horribly biased.

Even as the words left my mouth, they didn't feel true. Rob's and my love had always been made in the cracks, the jagged little edges that came from the ruin of something else. It were a place that weren't supposed to be filled with love, but that's how it had always been. Our love filled the broken bits and made us whole again. There weren't no perfect time to love him, not ever, and it had always been with the threat of death and hurt hovering around us. And we'd love each other anyway. Sure, and true.

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So, while this was my least favorite of the series, it still brought tears to my eyes and I gasped more than once. I still got butterflies every other page and the book was like a night-light from all the highlights (Cough, I highlighted most full pages in a rainbow of colors, cough) I used on my IPad. Just because I preferred the first two in no way lessens my affections for this book as a whole, it just had a lot to live up to. Scarlet was still Scarlet, doubting herself and putting the good of the people ahead of herself, and Rob was still Rob, self-sacrificing and all for Scarlet and starting their life together. I adored Much, just as I have from the beginning, and I was obsessed with his role in this final story. And I missed a certain character so much it hurt, and I didn't realize I would until he/she was gone, forever snuffed from existence. So, I could keep going on and on and on even as I've lost many of you on paragraph three (Most likely earlier, but shut up, it's my send-off to Rob), but that would be redundant. I love this series with my whole heart, and I am about to cry even as I think about posting this review, because I will never read a new story about Rob and Scar again....And I don't want to say goodbye to all of these wonderful characters. But there's one thing I'll never stop doing: Re-reading this wonderful series from beginning to end, forever looping and repeating the moments where Rob and Scar realized they loved one another and risked it all to be together. That sounds like heaven to me.

Nuzzling against his head, I whispered to him, "This is freedom, Rob."
Using our twined hands to tuck our arms close around my body, he murmured into my hair, "
You were always my freedom, Scar."

For more of my reviews, please visit:
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Let me express my displeasure of having to wait....in Sailor Moon GIFs. Girl's got some super canny facial expressions.

*Cue the lights*

That's the end of book 2??

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Hmph. Okay, I'll just pick up book three-

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WHAT?! 2015!!!!!????!!!!!!

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You have GOT to be kidding me

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Yeah that's cool. I'm fine....I'll just sit over here and wait.

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Seriously. I'm fine. Catcha later, Rob.

*And scene*
Profile Image for ✨ Helena ✨.
369 reviews978 followers
April 6, 2019
I pushed him back with a grin. “Posturing braggart, show-off peacock!” I accused.
“If by that you mean I’m the best damn archer you’ve ever seen and you’d like to reward me with a kiss,” he said, drawing me back to him. “Then I accept. And yes, I will continue to give you generous lessons to achieve my epic—nay, LEGENDARY—skill.”

Ooh, what a wonderful conclusion!!! I’m so satisfied, right now! This brought back all the wonderful Robin Hood feels from my childhood, and I strangely didn’t mind how A.C. Gaughen played with history to fit the story arc.

”I’ll never leave you,” he told me, and I felt his arms on me. “As long as you love me, I’ll be here, hidden somewhere in your heart.”

I ship Rob and Scar like no tomorrow. Their love and devotion to one another is just so inspiring. They carry such painful scars with them — both on their bodies and in their minds, but together, they know that they can overcome them, and that’s just beautiful. I aspire to find someone who loves me as much as Rob loves Scar one day. <3

”I may be a bastard, a princess, a thief, and a royal. But do you know what the other thing is that makes me more powerful than you?” I said.
He curled his lip at me.
I held up a knife. “With a knife in my hand, I’m UNBEATABLE.”

I’m not going to lie though...Prince John was a pretty ridiculous villain, always crying for his mummy, complaining that everything was so bitterly unfair for him. He acted like a spoilt toddler, stomping his foot in frustration, and never once came across as a terrifying villain. Guy of Gisbourne was more intimidating than he was. I guess I was just expecting a bit more of the major antagonist of the Robin Hood myths. Regardless, I enjoyed witnessing the takedown of Prince John very much, even though I had hoped that King Richard the Lionheart had been there to see it. :(

Nuzzling against his head, I whispered to him, “This is freedom, Rob.”
Using our twined hands to tuck our arms close around my body, he murmured into my hair, “YOU were always my freedom, Scar.”

All in all, I raced through this finale...or trilogy, in fact, and had a grand time, although I will admit that Lady Thief was the best instalment in the series!!! This trilogy is seriously underhyped and is deserving of a lot more attention! The Scarlet trilogy is definitely one of the better Robin Hood retellings, and I highly recommend it. So what are you waiting for?! GO READ IT!!! :D
500 reviews2,411 followers
May 26, 2015
This review (plus a book photography session!) and more can be found on Deadly Darlings!

If you haven't started this trilogy yet, then you're missing out. Or maybe you have started the trilogy but didn't like the first book? Maybe you loved the first two and are just excited for this one? Either way, you have to keep going because this book is the best in the trilogy, hands down.

There was a perfect balance of interesting elements in this book, from politics to romance to action--there's never a dull moment while reading (especially during the last half... holy shit).

Scarlet is still the badass heroine from the first two books. She already sounds pretty perfect, but I can honestly say that she grew and matured even more as a character. She has such a strong personality, and extremely passionate and loving. Scarlet's kind of woman who loves her man, her friends, and her country. I fully respect her for that.

Speaking of loving her man, Scarlet is one of those women who take the lead in a relationship, which I think is incredibly cute and awesome. The romance between her and Rob is just fantastic and ship-worthy as a whole. These two trust each other so wholeheartedly, and they bring each other up instead of push each other down. So many swoony moments between these two in this book, and my cheeks just hurt from smiling and my eyes hurt from crying. It's that kind of romance.

Like I said earlier, this story has a balanced plot as well, which will keep your eyes glued to the pages. There may not be a kick-butt action scene in every page, but even the political parts of this book will intrigue you. And in every page, you can see how there's not a single character who isn't involved. Every single cast member has a role to play, and I love them all to bits.

Basically, this book was fantastic. Please get it.
Profile Image for Stacee.
2,711 reviews703 followers
April 19, 2015
I'm not sure what I can actually say about this book, other than it was perfect.

Love love love Scarlet. She's always been feisty, but she really seems like she's grown up since I first met her. A while the speech thing STILL throws me off, it's delightful being in her head.

I refuse to say anything else about the characters who show up because spoilers, but there are a couple of relationships that I absolutely adored. And if there were spin offs or novellas about some of these people, my head would probably explode in joy.

Overall, this book is a roller coaster of swoons and laughs and action and treachery and heartfail and I loved every single word of it.

**Huge thanks to Bloomsbury for providing the arc in exchange for an honest review**

Profile Image for Bonnie.
1,372 reviews920 followers
July 10, 2017
I’ve been quite the black sheep when it comes to the series as a whole so I might as well go out with a bang. I did not like this one. At all. There wasn’t anything seriously wrong with it, however, it was extremely uneventful and didn’t go out with the bang and/or explosive finale that I was kind of hoping for this whole time. Throwing a wrench in the whole Robin Hood tale by transforming Marian into one of the gang was definitely cause for excitement but the story itself continued much on the same trodden path and inevitably failed to live up to its potential. So, let’s break down my issues with this installment.


Scarlet continued to be problematic for me. I’ve gotten past her strange dialect, mostly because it’s not as prevalent considering Eleanor has “taught” her how to talk like a lady even though we all know she’s completely capable of it. She has to begin talking like a lady again because her father, King Richard has given her a bit of land thus making her Lady Huntington. The entirety of the story consists of Scarlet going all “oh woe is me” about nobody liking her. What? She acted as if people were constantly shooting spitballs at her or something. It felt very out of character considering she’s supposed to be some thieving badass yet she’s whining because nobody likes her. Get over yourself, Charlie Brown Scarlet.

And then there’s Robin Hood. So many issues here. First off, the whole PTSD plotline seems to have found its way under a rug or something because it’s never made an issue again. Even though they have many nights sleeping next to each other. Apparently, the “love can heal” message the author was going for in Lady Thief actually worked. Ha. Right. Then there’s the magic trick performed where Robin turns into a spectacular douchebag right before your very eyes! Sure, one of those douchebag moments ended up being a momentary lapse but DUDE.

First DB moment: I don’t know if you recall but when Scarlet was married to Gisbourne, Robin could barely even kiss her because *gasp* she’s married. You know, against her will. To a sadist. And then there was the subtle mentioning of her basically being no longer pure because of said marriage that took place against her will in order to save Robin’s life. But then in this installment, he changes his tune. All those awful things are never mentioned and he acts shocked that Scarlet is ready and willing to marry him. Well, if I was a douchebag like that I guess I’d be shocked anyone wanted to be with me too.

Second DB moment: Scarlet was gifted lands which essentially gave her more power than the other douchebag of this tale, Prince John. It comes in handy when he tries to re-kidnap her for the “crimes” she was already pardoned for. Scarlet keeps this bit of information from Rob until she has to, and why? Well, if you recall, Robin was Earl of Huntingdon before the lands were taken from him. So his lands are now Scarlet’s, not that it should matter… but it does! He has the audacity to actually be pissed about it like she alone stole his land from him. This fucking guy. Way to make her feel bad about something completely beyond her control.

I’ve spent so much time complaining about those two I actually forgot the major reason Lion Heart was my least favorite installment: Prince John. In Lady Thief, John was still relatively villain-y however in this installment he reverted to his animated version.

He became such a non-villain and every time he was in a scene I imagined a toddler throwing a tantrum that didn’t get his way about something. He was a spoiled brat and it was just ridiculous that he still managed to almost best Scarlet and Robin. Eleanor really needed to slap the shit out of that boy though.

Another small issue was the strange side stories going on that were seemingly thrown in there for filler since they lacked any sort of resolution. Please do not tell me there’s going to be a spin-off. And that “ending”! I’m convinced my ARC was missing the final chapter because what is up with that lackluster and completely inadequate end? I mean come on, Sean Connery King Richard didn’t even make an appearance! Boooooooooooooooo.

I received this book free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Profile Image for Sophie.
1,179 reviews438 followers
August 16, 2017
Lion Heart was sort of bittersweet, because as much as I loved the book, I just wished it wasn't over. For the finale of the trilogy, it was the perfect mix of history, and action, and it tied up all the loose ends and answered all the questions we'd had from the very start of Scarlet. Now that Scarlet has been arrested and imprisoned by Prince John for Gisbourne's murder, she needs all her wits about her to survive. Everyone else thinks she has died, and John doesn't want to let her out of his sight. However, Scarlet is Scarlet, and she escapes, but she is still an outlaw, and has to rely on Eleanor's help in order to survive. Once it's discovered that John is planning on taking the crown for himself, Eleanor needs her to spy and help return King Richard home safely. Luckily, this takes her back to Nottingham, and she are Rob need to use all their resources to protect England, and stop John.

Scarlet has gone through hell in these books, but she still won't stop fighting for what is right. Now that she knows she is the illegitimate daughter of Richard, King of England, she uses it to her advantage, knowing that no matter how evil John is, he won't kill his niece. That doesn't mean he won't hurt her, either physically or mentally. She has to use everything she can in order to survive, and, luckily, she won't have to do it alone. Her character has matured, and although she still isn't comfortable about being a highborn lady, she steps up to the role like a champ, and uses it to her advantage.

The action in this book is immense - it's as if there are many different plot lines that are running parallel, and they all come to a head in this book. Obviously, Scarlet is involved in them all. It's not all just fighting though, either, there's also a lot of intrigue, and political backstabbing - all which have Eleanor's name right on them.

Finally, the romance is perfect in Lion Heart. Honestly, when I need all the feels, I grab this book, and re-read certain passages from it. Rob and Scarlet are the ultimate OTP, and nothing will stand in their way; they are perfect for each other.

This book, and the series are everything, and I'm just glad that I discovered them, and bought them. They are perfect for anyone who loves Robin Hood, history, or even just really good YA books. I can't wait for Gaughen's new series.
Profile Image for Jen ♥Star-Crossed Book Blog♥.
518 reviews318 followers
February 15, 2016
I wasn't ready to say goodbye to the friends I had found in these pages.  Whether it was the side characters, who I surprisingly teared up for more than once, or Rob and Scar, they all stood out and became unforgettable.  Each of them helped make this trilogy my favorite retelling of Robin Hood ever!  But I do have a warning, that ending left me wanting so much more!  But regardless of the ending, if you're looking for a series that is filled with action, adventure, love, honor, and friendship then this is your book!
He drew a breath and closed his eyes, his throat working. “There are a million ways this can end badly, Scar.”
I nodded.  “There always were.”

We started out the story with Scar in prison, guarded by a new character David.  Let it be known, that I absolutely adored David!  He accompanied Scar on her journey, after her escape from Prince John's imprisonment, and his interaction with another character had he laughing so hard!  The banter between David and this other character, who shall not be named, made me feel as though they were falling for each other.  But their conflicts, banter, and secret moments were left unanswered.  And I so wish that it would have been explained and touched upon.
Ruin. Ruin were all around me, and I couldn’t stop it none. I brought it to me like I were calling it down from the sky.

But as their journey progressed, something was blatantly missing.  Rob.  My heart ached for Rob and Scar to meet up and be back together again!  I just wanted them to have another kiss, another stolen moment, another time where they could be happy.  And ohhhhhh what I got was SO much more than I ever could have wanted.  I was beyond ecstatic with how Scar and Rob's love transformed and those scenes were definitely my favorite moments in this book.  Both of them were brave, fearless when needed, and brought so much good into the world that they deserved each other.  They were the best pairing I have ever seen in a Robin Hood story!
And then he kissed me, and stars flooded through me, glittering and dancing and heating me with their fire as he pulled me to shore. He pulled me up onto the rock, and he kissed me until it were dark.

But even though this is my favorite Robin Hood retelling, and I loved Rob and Scar together, that ending left so much to be desired for.  It felt as though it was rushed, and I was left wanting more resolutions.  Repercussions I wanted handed out didn't exist, and I was left feeling a little nervous over Rob and Scar's future.  And then there was a death that was lost in the shuffle, which made me so very sad.  So I closed this book feeling utterly conflicted.  Because Lion Heart was a solid 5 until those last few chapters.
The pains in our love were never far below the surface, like the blood in the bruises they left.

Saying all of that, this series was still phenomenal.  It had a kick ass heroine, a sexy as sin hero, and action that dropped my stomach!  These books were so much fun!  Yet if you're like me and prefer your endings a little bit more tied up, then just proceed cautiously.  Because knowing what I know now, I'd still read this series all over again!

This review was originally posted on Star-Crossed Book Blog

For more of my reviews, please visit:
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Profile Image for Danielle (Love at First Page).
726 reviews622 followers
December 13, 2015
If, like me just a couple of weeks ago, you have not yet picked up this wonderful series by A.C. Gaughen, I have to say that it is one of the best you could ever binge read. Full of action, swoons, heartbreak, and fantastic storytelling, you will never want to put these books down. I fell in love with this re-imagining of Nottingham and its fearless band of thieves. I'm sure every single one of you knows the tale of Robin Hood, but did you know that hidden within his fold is a lady thief masquerading as a young boy, a girl with a fierce will and a lion's heart? This is a series that will sweep you away and capture your hearts, as surely as Rob and Scarlet captured their people's.

Scarlet, the first book in the trilogy, was a struggle for me only due to the romance. It had a love triangle, which I'm never fond of, and I hated that Scarlet spent more time with the "other guy" than the one who she truly wanted to be with and who we all knew she'd end up with. I hate seeing the main characters with other people, and there was a lot of that in this book, so that sort of killed the romance. Worse, it seemed to drag on and on, too many triangular tropes were used, and I just wanted Rob to grow a pair! Thankfully, that's all said and done by Lady Thief, and oh my did I ever start shipping the romance. What a team Rob and Scarlet make. Not only that, but all three books are filled with exciting plots, amazing character growth, and plenty of swoons. I also really loved Scarlet's narration, which I know many readers have struggled with. She speaks in a lowborn dialect, and this only endeared her to me all the more. Many times I feared the worst throughout this series, but the characters are resilient and I had faith that all of their heartbreak would be worth it in the end. That they'd rescue Nottingham from those with evil aspirations and reclaim power for its people. Lion Heart is a satisfying conclusion to this series - though it ends rather abruptly! - and while I hate saying goodbye to Scar and Rob, I'm glad that their story has reached its happy ending.

Reasons YOU should read the Scarlet trilogy:

The character of Scarlet is what girl power is all about. There are many messages you could walk away with after reading the series, but the one that stuck with me is just how powerful we as women can be. Not in a way that means we can't be vulnerable or in love or rely on other people, but in a way that acknowledges our strength and does everything possible to make sure we aren't afraid to kick ass. Scarlet, for all of her fears of not being accepted or caring too much about the people around her, has one of the fiercest hearts and the most stubborn willpower I have ever read about. She inspired me so much throughout every book because she so clearly wants to be her own person and helps others do the same. She is a fictional feminist spokesperson if there ever was one, and I was mentally fist pumping nearly every chapter. While Scarlet grows so much over the course of the series and experiences true agony, she always remains the loveable and loyal girl I came to truly care about.

The romance is of epic proportions. Despite my hangups for the first book, Rob and Scarlet have easily become one of my favorite book couples. They had me swooning, grinning like a fool, and occasionally nursing a broken heart. Their path to marriage, family, and love is not easy, but one thing is for certain: they are loyal to each other and will do anything in their power to keep one another safe. It's just such a sweet romance, written beautifully by Gaughen, and I was constantly left breathless by their devotion. Their is a light/dark contrast to their relationship that really moved me. With their pasts, both think of themselves as having dark hearts and belonging to the shadows, but Rob brings light to Scarlet's world, and vice-versa. I loved that so much. Plus, there's Rob, who, in a word, is panty-melting. Oh wow did he have me swooning. "The shadows aren't the same without you, love." *dies*

Now that the series is completed, don't miss out on reading it! It's historical YA at its best, and I can almost guarantee it will make you feel EVERYTHING. The second two books, especially, had my heart in my throat. I can't recommend this series enough!

This review can also be found at Love at First Page.
Profile Image for Maggie ☘.
534 reviews654 followers
February 6, 2017
“Sometimes it's harder to be bright when you feel the darkness inside you. Sometimes the very hardest thing is to let the pain go.”

I'm not crying. NOPE Not at all.

Shit. Maybe I'm crying! This was such an epic ending to this trilogy!

“For the longest time, no one really knew about me. I were Rob’s secret, his informant, his shadow in dark places. They didn’t see me, and I didn’t mind that they didn’t see.
But now , and our story isn’t a secret. It’s a song, a legend, a story people tell to their children at night.”

And lastly, through all the grief and pain and dark moments:

Profile Image for gio.
1,020 reviews386 followers
May 25, 2015

"The strange thing were how much I missed the light. I'd gotten a taste of it, in Rob's kiss and touch, in the fickle, brutal shine of hope, and I wanted it back. I didn't want to be a thing of darkness anymore."

I'd been waiting for this book since the moment I finished Lady thief. And if you've read it you know why (either that or you're heartless). Now, Lion heart doesn't disappoint; it has its flaws sure, but overall I'm quite happy with it. It's Gaughen so expect pain, not as much as in Lady thief, but don't be fooled: Lion heart is set out to make you feel pain and then get back together all the pieces of your heart, or most of them anyway. Scarlet is probably my favourite retelling series so far (Acotar is giving it a run for its money, but that's another story).

Lion heart picks up a couple of months after the last events of Lady thief. At first the plot moves rather quickly, we don't see much of Scarlet being imprisoned and that pleased me, because I though that the story would be fast paced. However, and that's about the only flaw I could find in the book, then the pace slows down. A lot. Scar and Rob reunite too late in my opinion, almost after half of the book and they both do and say stupid things. I mean, Gaughen really had to add some unnecessary drama? Don't you care for my FEELS, woman?

Anyway, other than this, I was and I am really pleased with this ending. We have a new character and I loved his interactions with the old ones:

“Allan sighed, lying down in the grass. "Fine. I'm too pretty for all this serious business."
"I can make you a little uglier, if you wish," David said.
Allan lifted his head. "So you agree -- I'm pretty." he said smiling.”

I almost shipped them.

We do have some pretty teary and *coughs* intimate *coughs* Scar/Rob moments. And let me tell you, those were perfect. Like, FINALLY. (About damn time)
And well, they gained their happy handing. It wasn't easy, they sufferred for it, they lost so much for it and that's why it didn't feel fake. It wasn't perfect, all wrapped up with a bow, and I loved it.
Profile Image for majo .
653 reviews281 followers
July 18, 2018
There's this part in the author's note that says: The greatest legacy Scarlet could have is to leave you questioning when history may not have gotten it right- and who might be left out.

The author didn't just made a trilogy taking inspiration from Robin Hood. She made the story basically saying that there was a girl who help change history for the better. I don't know if such a girl really did exist, but if she did, I'm imagining she would be like Scarlet.
Profile Image for starryeyedjen.
1,640 reviews1,232 followers
July 13, 2018
Edited 7/13/18 to add: I remembered the very most important bits, but aside from that, re-reading this three years later was like reading it for the first time...and it was rather lovely. This series remains among my favorites to this day.


An ARC of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review, though this review is based on the audio version of the book. My thoughts are my own. This review can also be found at The Starry-Eyed Revue.

I had an ARC of this final book in the Scarlet series, but I was still kind of devastated by what transpired at the end of Lady Thief. And it didn't help that I thought I'd do myself a favor by re-listening to the first two books prior to picking up the finale. That only broke my soul more. So, it's safe to say that I went into this book with some trepidation.

My fears weren't unreasonable. But that's what I've loved so much about this series. The author isn't afraid to test her characters...to test their loyalty, their love, and their unfailing sense of right. In the beginning, I thought our heroine might have reached her limits, but she proved to be as resilient -- and obstinate! -- as ever.

I never feared for the romance because the love between Robin Hood and Maid Marion has been tested over time. But I must admit, I did not expect the direction it took, though I'm not unhappy about it. :)

As always, Helen Stern portrayed Scarlet beautifully, both as the thief and as the lady. In fact, it wasn't just the fear of how things would end for our merry band of thieves that kept me from reading this sooner. I also just really enjoy Stern's narration, and having begun the series via audiobook, I felt it only fitting to end the same way.

All in all, Lion Heart was a fine ending to one of my favorite retellings. It may have taken me awhile to begin the series -- and awhile to finish it -- but Scarlet and company will always have a place on my shelf and in my heart. I could have used, like, 2 more chapters there at the end, but otherwise, this book was perfection.

GIF it to me straight:

If you haven't started this series yet...
Profile Image for Elena.
570 reviews180 followers
August 1, 2015
This trilogy is so underrated! I'm going to miss these characters! :(
Profile Image for Jana (Nikki).
290 reviews
May 12, 2015
This review can also be found at my blog, There were books involved...


I have a problem. Well, okay, I've got two problems. First, the normal "how does one even write a review of the last book in a series?!" problem. But my bigger one is this: "How does one even begin to do the last book in a series justice when it is this freaking good?

But I desperately need to figure out how to answer those questions. Because Lion Heart is that freaking good.

If you haven't read Scarlet and Lady Thief , and you're curious whether this concluding volume does the series justice, and whether you should pick up the first book...

...the answer is, unequivocally, you should.

Everything amazing about the first two books in this series -- the characters, the emotion, the plot -- all comes together, and it basically amounts to an entire book of OH GOD PLEASE LET THIS TURN OUT OKAY's and YES OMG FINALLY's. Lion Heart is the culmination of so much hard work, so much heartbreak and sacrifice, and it is pure payoff.

Scarlet earned her spot as one of my favorite characters of all time before I even finished reading Scarlet -- which might have been jumping the gun a little bit, because she only ever got more and more amazing as the series went on. And Lion Heart continues this trend. Here is a girl who has been through things that would have ended many people, or made them give up and take the easy path out -- but not Scarlet. She's smart, fierce, she knows what she wants and how she (and her people) deserve to be treated, and she won't let anyone else make decisions for her.

Scarlet gets so many shining moments of strength and clarity in Lion Heart -- how could she not, with that title? The baddies in this series have been truly horrible, and they continue to be; but watching Scarlet face them in this book was just... glorious. Yes, there's the usual OVERABUNDANCE OF FEELS, and bad stuff happens (ow, my heart), but there were also so many moments when I just wanted to stand up and cheer, because Scarlet is just... ugh. Utterly flawless. I mean really, this book and its formidable ladies (not just Scarlet)... I cannot even.
"You think I shouldn't act for one boy?" I demanded. "You think that England is some higher thing? One life is England. Every life is England."
ARC, pg 35

And of course, I can't not talk about Scarlet and Rob... or as I call them, ROBLET (capslock is required). These two are my EVERYTHING. They went through so much pain in the first two books, and I won't lie, everything is not all sunshine and rainbows for them in Lion Heart . They are both scarred, literally and figuratively, from all they've been through, and neither of them are exempt from their own fears and self-doubts. But everything they've gone through, everything they've worked for, everyone and everything they've fought to protect... it's not for nothing. They are both such driven, idealistic, almost-isn't-good-enough sort of people, and this is absolutely reflected in their achievements in this book, and in their relationship, in the best way possible.
Rob's and my love had always been made in the cracks, the jagged little edges that came from the ruin of something else. It were a place that weren't supposed to be filled with love, but that's how it had always been. Our love filled the broken bits and made us whole again. There weren't no perfect time to love him, not ever, and it had always been with the threat of death and hurt hovering round us. And we'd love each other anyway. Sure, and true.
ARC, pg 61

I can't say much about the plot of Lion Heart , because it would imply spoilers in the preceding titles; however, I can say that I was absolutely glued to this book from start to finish. It was excellently balanced between the excitement and action that we've grown to expect from these adventures, and slower, sweeter, character-driven moments that are no less gripping.

No matter what was happening, I was a mess of emotions.

In conclusion...
"There is no safety to be had. Death has walked this far with me as a shadow just behind me, and all I've ever had, chained in a dungeon or hiding in the forest, is my ability to fight. To never give up. To never let this awful world win."
ARC, pg 82

I can't even explain to you guys how amazing this trilogy is. I mean, I've tried in these reviews (I'VE TRIED SO HARD omg). But with the great ones, you always end up feeling like you've fallen short. There's always something you just can't explain until someone has read the books -- and even then, the "explanation" usually goes something like, "Oh my gosh, right?" "RIGHT?!" "Seriously."

These books are like that. They'll make you smile and cheer, laugh and cry. They'll rip your heart into a million pieces, try to tape it back together, stomp on it some more, add some more tape -- and then it'll be over. And, yeah, your heart might be shaped a little differently after all that; but really, it's just made room for all the love you've developed for these characters and their stories.

And it is so worth it.


There were books involved...
Profile Image for Mlpmom (Book Reviewer).
3,001 reviews369 followers
May 15, 2015
4.5 Stars

I'm not sure I have ever been this excited nor this nervous for an ending to a trilogy. This trilogy has been one of my most favorites from the word go and when you love something so much, it is hard not to pick up the last book with tons of emotion.

Can I just tell you how much I have missed these characters and how very much I loved this book, this last, so sad to see it end, book? Because I did. I loved it all. The detail, the history, the characters, the plot, the action, the sweet romance, the everything and I really am so sad that that was it but so happy with the way it all ended and came together.

Gaughan did such an amazing job with this whole series. Intricately integrating fiction with fact and creating a retelling that was both unique and entertaining.

Scarlet isn't your average heroine, nor is she your average thief. She is cunning, smart, beautiful, passionate, fierce, and willing to die to save those she loves and her country. Willing to fight for land, love, and freedom like so many from this era.

All of the characters were phenomenal and I loved every single minute of their interactions. So many scenes brought tears to my eyes and made me smile that it was crazy. I have come to love all these characters so much and it was so great seeing so many things, so many good things for once, happen to, and for, so many of them. None of them have had it easy and they have all lost someone so to see some happiness, finally, was just..amazing.

This truly is hands down one of my favorite YA historical reads out there. We need more like this in this genre because it really is a stand out series with beautiful writing and fabulous characters.

I'm so happy with the way this ended, even if not everyone got what they had coming to them, this ended on such a high that it was all worth it. I am so sad that I now have to say goodbye to this world and the people in it. I will sorely miss them all.
Profile Image for Alyssa.
1,069 reviews839 followers
May 2, 2015
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Lion Heart by A.C. Gaughen
Book Three of the Scarlet trilogy
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Publication Date: May 19, 2015
Rating: 3 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

The eagerly-awaited conclusion to the Scarlet trilogy delivers another action-packed and romance-filled adventure.

Scarlet has captured the hearts of readers as well as the heart of Robin Hood, and after ceaseless obstacles and countless threats, readers will finally find out the fate of the Lady Thief.

Imprisoned by Prince John for months, Scarlet finds herself a long way from Nottinghamshire. After a daring escape from the Prince's clutches, she learns that King Richard’s life is in jeopardy, and Eleanor of Aquitaine demands a service Scarlet can’t refuse: spy for her and help bring Richard home safe. But fate—and her heart—won’t allow her to stay away from Nottinghamshire for long, and together, Scarlet and Rob must stop Prince John from going through with his dark plans for England. They can not rest until he’s stopped, but will their love be enough to save them once and for all?

What I Liked:

Eh. I'm feeling kind of meh about this one. On the one hand, I can see why people are loving this one. It was good! But for me, it wasn't great, and the entire series has been okay at best for me. I thought Scarlet was pretty good (the romance is weird though. If I remember correctly, there was a love triangle in book one, but not in book two). I didn't like Lady Thief very much at all - I gave it two stars. But this one was okay. It was a good trilogy conclusion novel.

This novel starts with Scarlet in Prince John's dungeons. She's been held captive for three months. With the help from a strange source, she escapes, and tries to figure out her best plan of action. He grandmother, the lady Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine, wants her to go to Ireland safely. But Scarlet can't stay away from Nottinghamshire, especially since Rob thinks she's dead. But the fight to keep Richard alive and bring him back safely is bigger than any one person, and stopping John is the most important thing. Scarlet will have to make difficult decisions, with or without Rob.

One thing that I really liked about this book is how easy it is to slip back into the world of Marian (Scarlet) and Prince John's schemes and the poor. I barely remember anything from Lady Thief (to be honest, I remember nothing at all). I remember a little from Scarlet. But it was nice that I didn't feel lost in this book, though the beginning took me by surprise (I forgot that Scarlet was taken by Prince John?).

The romance is better in this book, or maybe I simply can't remember how "bad" it was in Lady Thief. Either way, I wasn't nearly as bothered with the romance as I was in Lady Thief. Actually, the romance was probably my favorite aspect of the book, and I really enjoyed seeing Scarlet and Rob take things up a notch. Or ten. The romance definitely worked in this book, and quite frankly, I kept reading the book for the romance. But over one hundred pages into the book is when Rob makes his first appearance. Just a warning.

Read on for things that didn't work! There aren't many, but this one still ends up with a three-star rating.

What I Did Not Like:

I just wasn't interested in this book. I'd been pushing off reading it for a while now, but I told myself, I need to read it now. I picked it up and wasn't totally sucked in. It wasn't until Rob finally appeared in the book that I perked up a little bit. But then I settled back into the story and was a little bored again. I feel like a lot focused on the romance (which is fine), a subplot romance (between two characters other than Rob and Scarlet), and not enough attention was focused on the bigger picture.

At the same time, the bigger picture definitely was addressed. Scarlet and Robin have to raise enough money to pay the taxes for Nottinghamshire, in order to help pay the ransom for Richard. I guess I wanted more from the historical side of things. Richard isn't in this book at all, and the parts relating to Prince John just aren't that interesting.

Prince John felt like a cartoon villain character, especially in the last scene of the book. His dialogue is so cliche and cartoon-like! His character in general is very one-dimensional. I think I remember thinking that Robin is a bit one-dimensional in Lady Thief. I think Robin is less one-dimensional, but Prince John is definitely a flat and underdeveloped character. Not to mention he speaks like he came out of a really bad cartoon for tiny children.

The ending wasn't fulfilling for me, as you can probably tell. The ending is literally the climax, and there is not epilogue, or at least an ending scene that ISN'T part of the action of the climax. I don't really like it when books that are conclusion novels to a series don't end with some sort of epilogue ending, in which all loose ends are definitively tied.

Overall, I think my big problem with this book is a personal one - I just wasn't interested in this book. I really wanted to finish the series, but this one did not capture my attention, nor did it hold my attention while I was reading. It was an enjoyable read, but not a series I'll be reading again.

Would I Recommend It:

Again, I enjoyed this book, but the series overall gets a 2.5-3-star-rating. That being said, I probably wouldn't recommend the series. If you've come this far and have read books one and two, then you should definitely read this one! But don't start the series if you haven't already. Don't read books two or three if you've only read book one. Just move on!


3 stars. This one was okay! Just not that great. At least for me. I've seen a ton of positive reviews on Goodreads for this book. But this series never really clicked with me, so I had little expectations to love this one. If you've been liking the series, then this one will probably be good!
Profile Image for Simona B.
892 reviews2,985 followers
September 20, 2015
"Stories are told to make you feel something, and they can tell ours over and over again, and every time it will be something different."

Okay, I don't know what to say. I cannot say I didn't like it because it is not totally exact, and I cannot say I truly liked for quite the same reason. Do you have an idea of how frustrating it is?

The plot was fairly useless. First, there is Scarlet going hither and tither wandering if to come back to Robin is a wise decision or not, and then there is the two of them together. That's all. Nothing more. You want battles and fighting and evils being destroyed and heroes triumphing? Forget them. You'll have a hint of all these just at the end of the book, for something like five or four pages. Now tell me if I shouldn't say this was regrettable.

Apart from a very very few things, there was nothing really noteworthy, and if there was more I have already forgotten it. My rating relatively high is all for Rob, even if also he here seemed to be a little too... cuddly. Soppy, if you want. I mean, come boy, you're a man... restrain yourself. Show some virility e stop being silly.

Anyway, summing up, I feel like I can say the series was fairly good. I liked it, if not for the very catching and intriguing piece of romance that was Scar and Rob's story in the first book; what came next, I think everything was just downhill.
Profile Image for Angelica.
805 reviews1,135 followers
Want to read
September 20, 2014
The third one is coming!!!

EDIT: 8/21/14



I like it.

EDIT: 9/15/14

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Though I admit it is not what I expected it is still beautiful. I was expecting a side facing picture and her holding the knife. Still, it did not disappoint. I'm so excited to read this!

Profile Image for Lori.
906 reviews598 followers
May 18, 2015
I finished and I still love this series so much. The ending wasn't as epic as I had hoped but it was still full of everything that made the rest of the series great. I definitely recommend these books.

SO SO SO excited for this book and so happy that I'm seeing people who are loving it already!! Can't wait to get my own hands on it!

Profile Image for Maggi.
221 reviews1 follower
May 22, 2015
It seems like these days all conclusions to my once favourite books disappoint me. I don't even know why.

While I loved Scarlet and Lady Thief, the final book just bored me to hell. I skimmed some parts, because nothing was really happening.

Don't know if I'll write a proper review as there's not much to say.
Profile Image for Sarah.
137 reviews233 followers
July 9, 2015
See this review and more at What Sarah Read

The thing I loved so much about Lion Heart, is everything I love about the entire Scarlet series. It’s an exciting re-telling of the Robin Hood legend that immediately appealed to me, but what I really loved about this entire series is the true life historical facts and events that Gaughen wove into the story to make it an even more engaging and interesting. There was so much drama and political intrigue in Lion Heart and it was such a culmination of the first two books, that I couldn’t turn the pages quickly enough to find out how everything wrapped up. For those of you who have read Scarlet and particularly Lady Thief, you know how much this series can rip out your heart and stomp on it. I don’t think I have ever felt so gutted after reading a book as when I finished Lady Thief, so I was pretty nervous going into Lion Heart. I am so happy to say that Lion Heart wrapped up the series so beautifully and was the perfect mix of action and swoon, and was exactly what I was hoping for to end this epic tale.


I’m not sure if it’s because I didn’t want the series to end, so in reality no ending would have ever felt like enough, but I was left feeling like I needed a little bit more at the end. Don’t get me wrong…the story line felt complete, I was happy with the way things were wrapped up, and the last few paragraphs were magical. I just wanted MORRREEEE! I keep thinking I wanted an epilogue just to get a little glimpse into the future, so maybe that would have satisfied my need for a more. Either that or I’m a greedy reader and need to chill out in a corner.

This one is easy! Chapter 23….ohhhh Chapter 23 and all of your feels! There’s a scene that takes place under a large oak tree that is just so perfect in its simplicity and beauty. It is such a special scene that made my heart swell with so many feelings. Amidst so much pain and darkness, this moment between two characters is a culmination of so many things and left me feeling so satisfied. Gaughen has a talent for bringing moments to life on the page, and this chapter of the book is a shining example of that.


Profile Image for Teryna90.
201 reviews49 followers
June 4, 2015
"You were always my freedom, Scar"

I'm going to start opening a huge parenthesis, I love romantic stories, I love to read about falling in love, conquering love, finding love, fighting for your love and even losing love! Soooo I was really shocked when I didn't appreciate all the love going on between Scarlet and Robin.

There had to be love scenes, considering how Lady Thief ended, and there had to be a happy ending, even though this is a retelling I'm glad it didn't end up like the original version of Robin Hood - Marian dying, but still I found many scenes intolerable, to cheesy. And that's saying something... I usually love cheesy... well not usually but when there is a good balance between romance and action.

So let's just say that my rating is somewhere between 3 full stars and 3.5 stars. But considering that I loved this series I decided to give it 4 stars. This book isn't perfect and enjoyable like the first two but it's still a great read, a fast paced book with some action and an happy ending. Hey what would you want more?

I don't know if the main reason to why I didn't enjoy this book as much as the first two is do to the university, stress, work and other s*... Thing is I couldn't really rely on the story, I kind of got out of the story. I felt like a stranger, and that made me feel bad.

Since I've read other books that I loved, well I don't know... prob it's not do to stress and personal problems, simply the book didn't get me.

And that ending... if felt like the last chapters were written in a rush. I found the ending not totally satisfying and it left this bitterness in my soul that I just couldn't shake off.

So there you have it I was unsatisfied and disappointed.

I also wanted to meet King Richard Lion Heart. :/

Oh well I'm going to say that in spite of everything I REALLY REALLY enjoyed reading this saga. I wanted more feels, the same that I felt in book one, but oh well we can't always have what we want.

Scarlet is a kick ass heroine, lovable.

Robin... well he is simply Robin! (well a little too cheesy in this book :p)

Profile Image for Andi (Andi's ABCs).
1,546 reviews189 followers
February 17, 2016
This review was originally posted on Andi's ABCs
Lion Heart was by far my favorite of the 3 book series. As the plot progressed I thought Gaughen’s story got better and better and culminated in a book that felt pretty perfect, not only as a series ender, but as an exclamation on a great set of books. This book terrified me to read. After what happened in both Scarlet and Lady Thief I was legit afraid what would happen to the people I had grown to know and love. I had a pit in my stomach the whole time and for good reason. But Annie did an excellent job with Lion Heart. She tied up things that needed to be tied up and left some stuff open as it takes on a different historical context. It was utterly fantastic. It crushed my soul but I also loved every minute.
Profile Image for ~Bellegirl91~.
611 reviews85 followers
December 23, 2016
*crying inside* Oh man it's over over over and I still want to marry Robin Hood!! What an ending and that thing that happened to Rob.......let's just say I was dying haha. But this had a fantastic end and such a fun trilogy and became one of my new favorites Definitely a must read if you like these kinds of books/stories and HIGHLY come recommended:D
Profile Image for Debby.
583 reviews540 followers
April 17, 2021
4 stars

The Scarlet series by A.C. Gaughen has been one of my favorite ongoing series since I dove into it last year, so obviously I started reading Lion Heart with equal parts excitement and nervousness. Gaughen has been all about the brutal endings so far, but surely she'll give us a happy ending here, right? Lion Heart delivers a satisfying ending for sure and has cemented this series as one of my all-time favorites. What a wonderful feminist take on Robin Hood!

I must admit that I had a bit of trouble getting back into the series when I started reading Lion Heart. It's been more than a year since I read Lady Thief and though I remembered in broad strokes what had happened (Scarlet being tortured by Prince John and Gisbourne while forced to be the latter's wife, Rob's struggles with PTSD preventing him and Scarlet from being together, and particularly that brutal ending in which multiple major characters died), I couldn't remember the precise character dynamics and many of the secondary characters. My advice would be to binge read the series for that reason - and I'll probably do a binge reread at some point to do the story justice.

When I got back into it though, I started reading at an extremely rapid pace. Gaughen's prose and storytelling is as fluid as ever, and in this book the conflict is clear: Prince John is obviously the supreme bad guy, and he's trying to prevent Richard's return to England and kill Scarlet in the meantime. There's a lot more courtly politics involved in this installment of the series, as Scarlet's identity becomes more and more well known. Obviously, she has the support of Eleanor of Aquitaine and Winchester, but she finds more friends in Essex and Suffolk. Scarlet's not used to fighting with words and diplomacy, so there's a bit of a struggle there as she tries to figure out how to play the game, but she excels due to her inspiring story and natural charisma. She's fighting for a noble cause, and people can obviously see that. She dares to say what others don't. She's a feminist super star!

The romance in this one is pretty great. I mean, it starts off a bit melodramatic and frustrating - something's always trying to get in between Rob and Scarlet. There's always a reason why they shouldn't be together. This time, it's because Scarlet is now a noble, and Rob is not. I'll admit that in the first half I wanted to bang my head against the wall a couple of times because they seemed to be making it so hard on themselves. WHY couldn't they just let themselves be happy? But admittedly, it is all very fitting to the time period. There is much much happiness for them in the latter half of the book, so be not afraid.

However, I have realized why, after Scarlet, I've only ever really had moderate amounts of swoonage for them, and it's not just the minimal banter and recurring drama. Rob is a bit too much of an alpha to me. He can get so jealous and so protective; he can fly into rages because someone looked at Scarlet wrong. Now, some people will like that, and sometimes I do too, but I feel like Rob crossed the line just a bit for me. Scarlet is such a fierce and strong character, especially with everything she went through in Lady Thief, if not just her entire life. I would ship them so much more if he just had faith in her being able to defend herself. And I think he does have that to an extent, and he seems to kind of be learning that as the story goes on, but he just comes across a bit too alpha. Which also is fitting to the time period, but come on. It's SCARLET.

My other tiny annoyance in this book is the dialect. It's been over a year since I read the first two books, and there I brushed the dialect off as best I could. But I realized while reading Lion Heart why it annoys me - because all it is is writing "were" instead of "was". There are no other aspects to this dialect: no contractions or awkward slang (except for "bits" instead of "breasts"/"privates"). You'd think this would be a relief - some dialect, but not too much, easy enough to ignore. But while reading Lion Heart, I was just wondering, "If that's the extent of the dialect... why bother??" If you do it, commit to it, and go all out. It also didn't make sense, because with Scarlet's new position she's pushed to speak correctly, so sometimes she does say "was", but then other times randomly switches back to "were". There's no pattern to it, so it just didn't make sense in my mind.

The last fifty pages, or so, is where this book really truly shines. To be honest, the plot up to that point felt a bit disjointed, and it was hard for me to get a grasp on where the story would end (the trouble with historical fiction: you always want to be a know-it-all about what's going to happen, but (1) it's fiction, and (2) history doesn't "end"). This climax is intense and, personally, quite brutal (Gaughen, you really don't need to kill so many awesome characters ;______;) - but it then transitions to a total slam-bang ending. Everything comes together and I just wanted to cheer because it was so awesome. Scarlet is absolutely one of my favorite characters for life.

I do want to have a liiiiiitle bit of a spoilery discussion though, because this book gave me a headcanon that I'm not sure is actually canon but I desperately want it to be.

Summing Up:

Though we had a rough start, with that killer ending, Lion Heart made me a very happy camper indeed. The Scarlet series is exciting, adventurous, intriguing, romantic, intense, and at times brutal, but above all, what I love is how unabashedly feminist it is. It takes skill to write historical fiction in a time so sexist and oppressing to females and then put down the female as the strong heroine while not losing an ounce of believability. I love the Robin Hood folktale, but I believe I love this version even more.

GIF it to me straight!

Recommended To:

All Robin Hood fans, but basically everyone.

*An electronic review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the contents of the review.
Profile Image for Erin.
2,961 reviews485 followers
April 14, 2018
Well, I finally made time to finish this trilogy that began with Scarlet and Lady Thief. I am a big fan of the Robin Hood legend. Lion Heart picks up almost immediately where book 2 left off. Scarlet is on the run from Prince John and Robin Hood has no idea that she is alive. But it wasn't very action orientated, more focused on the young lovers. However, the relationship between Eleanor of Aquitane and Scarlet was great and I loved all of their scenes together.
This was a satisfying conclusion to the series that focused more on giving all our characters a happier ending. So, it is safe to say that book 2 will go down as my absolute favorite book in the trilogy.
Profile Image for Anastasia シ.
460 reviews115 followers
January 29, 2018
Full Review on my blog!

Wow, what a series! I didn’t even know how to write this review.

Lion Heart begins with Scarlet’s imprisonment by Prince John. She has been locked away for months and after she escapes she reunites with her Grandmother, rather than Rob, to figure out Prince John’s next move. This is the crux of what I didn’t like about this book. My favorite thing about Scarlet and Lady Thief were the interactions, and camaraderie, between Scarlet and Rob and in Lion Heart there was less of that.

I can’t say a lot about the plot without getting into spoiler territory, but I loved this book so, so much. I loved that Scarlet didn’t wait around to be saved, she didn’t sit around wringing her hands and feeling sorry for herself, she leapt into the action, and used her intelligence and her physical abilities to help herself and those around her. She and Robin made my heart ache in the best possible ways, and together, they were unstoppable. Scarlet is the kind of female character I like to see in YA. Scarlet is fierce, independent, loyal, and despite the odds being stacked against her she still perseveres and doesn’t compromise her own morals to reach her goals.

Lion Heart was the perfect end to a fantastic trilogy. I highly recommend it! I loved this series. If you haven’t read it yet I seriously suggest a binge read!

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Profile Image for Sara Jesus.
1,155 reviews103 followers
September 1, 2017
Um final perfeito para uma das melhores trilogias que li! Uma narrativa de aventuras, personagens cobertas de carácter e de verdadeiros heróis. Scarlet, a nossa Marion é uma mulher capaz de todo para proteger aqueles que ama. O seu coração é cheio de lealdade e generosidade pronto a defender várias causas.

Juntamente com Robin prova que é uma verdadeira Lady. Uma mulher que encontra a sua identidade no meio de tanto sofrimento. O príncipe John tenta impedir com que ela tenha a sua vitória, mas no fim ela mostra ser a mulher integra que sempre foi. E Robin torna-se mais fascinante do que era na minha infância.
Profile Image for Katie.
522 reviews422 followers
May 31, 2015
It's...it's over.

What am I supposed to do with my life now that there's no more Scarlet and Rob and Much and Eleanor and ? This was the perfect end to a perfect series. I wanted more at the end, but I think that's okay - I'd rather she left us wanting more than wishing for it to be over.

Basically, anything Gaughen writes is going straight to my "must read at all costs" shelf. Because reasons. Lots of ship-tastic reasons.
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