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The Arrow of Sherwood

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  58 ratings  ·  19 reviews
1193. A Crusader returns from the Holy Land to his home in Nottinghamshire, where he is known as a murderer. His name is Robin of Locksley. Following a youth spent with lowborn friends Robin is determined to settle into the role his father wanted for him: a lord dispensing justice to the county. But a false rumour of his death in the East has stolen Robin’s lands from him, ...more
Hardcover, 306 pages
Published October 19th 2013 by Pen & Sword Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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Sep 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Well plotted story set in the 12th century, beautifully written by a first rate historian.
I really enjoyed reading this book. Even though Robin Hood is a mythical character, the entertaining, fast paced story is placed in an authentic historical setting, full of interesting detail. You learn a lot about medieval life and the detail about the social set up, the laws, the food, the towns and much more is fascinating. The author has an easy, engaging style which makes the reader keep reading to fin
Deborah Pickstone
This debut novel is pretty good. LJ is a historian and I think a good one. Very enjoyable version of the Robin Hood legend!

My one criticism is the trial by ordeal. If it had happened as told Robin would have been permanently crippled. That is the physiological reality. Trials by ordeal were a Catch-22 (which, of course, had not yet been invented! :P) in that if you won, you lost and if you lost - you lost. I hardly think that any person, allegedly (in those days) at the least superstitiously bel
Danny Adams
Jan 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Transparency notice: I won my copy of this book in an author giveaway, but that didn't affect the nature of this review.

Short review: I loved it. Longer review: One similarity that Johnson's Lord Locksley shares with the more traditional Robin Hood is that Robin is coming home from the Crusades to find Nottingham being slowly crushed by its rulers' greed. And Robin himself finds that he was thought dead and he no longer has the title to his own home, though his mother still lives in Locksley Hal
Blair Hodgkinson
Aug 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
Though I found the book to be a bit of a slow-starter, I stayed with it and it picked up. The author's historical research shows on the page and many aspects of the period are authentic (and verifiable). Having read up a fair amount on the period, I might quibble over a few details in the author's historical notes, but for the most part this book is a very fair representation of late 12th century England in the reign of Richard the Lionheart.

The author's take on Robin Hood is not wholly original
Emily Joy
Nov 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
If you want a historically accurate Robin Hood novel, this is it. To some, the history included in this novel might seem like too much, or maybe it might seem to slow the story down. Personally, I found that the history was used to move the story forward, place the characters in completely believable situations, and give the novel a very real world to exist in. The fact that it's so historical makes these very familiar and mythical characters seem much more real.

There are plenty of county court
Jan 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Arrow of Sherwood was well-told re-imagining of the Robin Hood stories, but was free of the political correctness or silliness that blights a lot of modern dramatic adaptations. All the well-known characters were present, and some of the situations and scenarios are reminiscent of some movies (Will Scarlette as Robin's illegitimate half-brother Marian acting on her own to help the poor etc), but this was a novel that very much has stands out on its own.

Some of the characterization was a brea
Laure Estep
Oct 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: robin-hood
Definitely one of the best tales of Robin Hood that I've read. It was surprising the way this story took hold of me. I was reading along, liking the complexity of the conflict with the Vipont family, and all the gut-wrenchingly infuriating manipulations the corrupt system allowed, wondering about this surprisingly low-key, contained version of the usually more impulsive and volatile Robin, then all of a sudden things happen and I'm gripping the book so hard my knuckles are white, and snarling a ...more
Alan Tomkins-Raney
Apr 08, 2019 rated it it was ok
I rated this book 2 stars as fair. There were times while reading it that I considered 3 stars for good, but I finished it feeling kind of meh. It is a reimagining of the Robin Hood story, the first novel of a medieval historian. I found the writing to be not very evocative and the character development marginal at best. The historical detail was interesting. The storyline was ok and had definite potential for something more exciting than what was actually produced in these pages. Anyway, there ...more
Nolan Ridley
Jun 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
I discovered Lauren Johnson while researching medieval history for a short story I was writing. She is an Oxford educated historian and has shared a number of wonderful gems from her research that are available online. I'm a fan of historical fiction, but I was curious that a debut author would choose the legend of Robin Hood. It seems, on the surface of it, to be very done. I won't try to explain her choices. She speaks quite eloquently for herself in this interview.
I found her interpretation o
Woo-hoo! finally finished. I've been working on this one for months. not because it was bad though. I've just been a bit to busy with work to read everyday. :C sadface!

It was really good, if a bit overly detailed. all the laws and long boring trails and riding around getting nobles and nuns to agree to things and descriptions of the culture was nice. . . . to an extent, but I do feel that it took a bit away from the plot. I can do without a lot of that so long as there's plenty of action and a
Jane Williams
May 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
While I'm no expert on the period, I know enough to spot that this is the "historically authentic" take on Robin Hood and the period he lived in - the Merry Men aren't all that merry, do not dine exclusively on venison, and bear no resemblance to Legolas. All the people are people, not cardboard cut-out heroes or villains, to the point that I started off sympathising with Guy and the Sheriff rather than Robin. A good, solidly-written book, with no obvious plot holes or moments of convenient char ...more
Mark Fretwell
Jan 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Just finished reading this book. The last few chapters made it 'unputdownable' until the book was finished.

Overall I was moved, educated and entertained.

I hope the author will write many more historical fiction books especially about medieval Sherwood.
Nov 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Excellent new twist on an old story.
Sep 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: rh-fiction
A competently written and engaging story.
Nov 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
Could have used more action though. Excellent writing.
Aug 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is my favorite Robin Hood retelling I’ve read! It really does a good job of integrating historical context into the story without slowing down the book. The characterization of Robin really pushed it to the top for me though. I read so many retellings where his character is just so unlikable, but here you you truly see a well rounded and developed character. I loved following him through the different stages of the plot, and watching his character mature with each new problem he faced.
Barefoot Gypsy Jimerson
Robin strike again.

I enjoyed a good read of Robin Hood. This different take is well wrote an one I could of read a few chapters more. So if u like a story on Robin Hood don't be shy pick it up an give it a read.
Aug 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Nice reading! I would not consider this work within historical fiction but just fiction with a couple of well know historical big characters. Didn't like the personification of the Lionhearth though. This book is definitely worth reading and offers an interesting and different perspective of the well known Robin Hood!!!
Gina  W Fischer
Oct 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
I loved this book! I really enjoyed the author's attention to historical detail, and I found it very entertaining and fast-paced. I heartily recommend it to anyone who likes the Robin Hood myth.
Douglas E
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Jeanne Behnke
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Apr 05, 2014
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Andrea Marshall
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Goodreads Librari...: Wrong author for my book 3 24 Feb 02, 2014 07:08AM  

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Lauren Johnson grew up in Bristol and now lives in London. She studied History at Oxford University, taking a Double First. Her Masters in Medieval Historical Research explored the impact of the Wars of the Roses on noblewomen.

Lauren's latest book explores daily life in the first year of Henry VIII's reign: SO GREAT A PRINCE, ENGLAND AND THE ACCESSION OF HENRY VIII (Head of Zeus). Dan Jones has ca

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