Isabelle of Kirklees has only ever known a quiet life inside the sheltered walls of the convent, where she lives with her mother, Marien. But after she is arrested by royal soldiers for defending innocent villagers, Isabelle becomes the target of the Wolf, King John’s ruthless right hand. Desperate to keep her daughter safe, Marien helps Isabelle escape and sends her on a mission to find the one person who can help: Isabelle’s father, Robin Hood. As Isabelle races to stay out of the Wolf’s clutches and find the father she’s never known, she is thrust into a world of thieves and mercenaries, handsome young outlaws, new enemies with old grudges, and a king who wants her entire family dead. As she joins forces with Robin and his Merry Men in a final battle against the Wolf, will Isabelle find the strength to defy the crown and save the lives of everyone she holds dear?
I’ve discovered that I will jump on any Robin Hood retellings. Especially because most of the ones I come across feature a female main character, and I think that is one the best things ever. When I first found out about this book, I knew it would be about Robin Hood’s daughter, and that was basically all I needed to know that I wanted to read it.
I really, really hate to say that this book really wasn’t for me. I came close to DNFing it a lot of times, but by the time I wanted to put the book down, I felt like I had read too much and decided to push through. I ended up reading a bit of it just to see how the things I didn’t like play out. It wasn’t quite hate-reading, but it was reading to see if I could discover more things I didn’t like about it.
I don’t think this is a bad book. It’s interesting and I like the underlying story. I just think it was written in a way that wasn’t for me.
One of the biggest things for me was how some things were written. There were so many things that felt cheesy (and not the good kind of cheesy) and borderline cringy. For example, the romantic relationship and how the romance played out. It felt very reminiscent of old YA books that I didn’t like. Lots of smirking, leaning against walls, and things that make it very obvious that a romance is trying to happen here. Not that any of those things are bad, but when they happened it felt like they were inserted into the book, instead of them flowing naturally. It felt awkward and kind of like it was trying too hard, if that makes any sense. And just really, really cheesy.
I think that was one of my main problems with everything. It felt like it was trying too hard, so things came off as awkward, cringy, or cheesy instead of what they were going for. Serious dialogue turned awkward and heartfelt conversations turned stilted. It could be the writing that I didn’t love or just how things were executed.
It’s kind of hard to explain, because the things I didn’t like were like shots here and there (though they happened pretty often haha). There’s no big overarching aspect that I had a problem with, it’s just how things were written.
The plot was decent, the characters were alright, and I did find myself enjoying reading it here and there. The idea and what this book wanted to do is pretty good. There’s lots of sword fighting, there’s a cool community in the woods, there’s lots of bow and arrow shooting, there’s lots of apples. I don’t think this is a bad book, I just think it wasn’t for me.
Thank you for reading!