elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Heart of a Forest by Angelia Sparrow & Naomi Brooks

I remember when the two authors were planning to write this book, Angelia Sparrow wondered if it was possible for a boy raised as a girl, and having no real contact with anyone if not his own maid and guardian, a man himself disguised as a woman, to really believe that all people, men and women, have a penis, and the only difference that distinct them is how they behave in public.

The book is a good and precise retelling of the Robin Hood's legend. The twist is that Marion, the bastard son of dead King Richard I, was raised by Sir David as a princess. Sir David was Richard's lover, and was supposed to be killed during the crusade. Instead, to accomplish the last dying bed desire of his lover, he disguised as a woman, Bess, and collected Marion from his peasant mother family, and brought her to Locksley, where Robin's father betrothed his son to "princess" Marion. Years later, Robin is an outlaw and Marion is taken in almost captivity by the Sheriff of Notthingham.

Adult Robin, even if he doesn't know Marion's true nature, is not against the idea of man on man love, in fact, among his merry band, he is quite intimate both with Will Scarlett than Little John. But with them it's more friendship than love, and when he meets Marion, and discovers his true nature, it's no problem at all to fall in love and swear to his guardian Bess, that he will take good care of the "princess". In all this plan, poor Marion doesn't come out as a very clever boy, he is all in all the perfect example of how a young lady was raised at that time, with little regard to his mind, since she doesn't need it, and all the efforts spend to make her a perfect and proper lady. But Marion has some surprise on her bow.

The story and the point of view on the history is more Hollywood type than historically accurate, means that it's more important to show the nice and naughty side of the age, than the real life style, much as it is always done on the movie from the Errol Flynn's time to Kevin Costner, passing from Sean Connery and also Walt Disney. Said that, if someone wonders why there are so many homosexual relationship, maybe the strange thing is that there are so many in the same place, but don't forget that they are not historically inaccurate, it's well known that Richard I was scolded both from the Pope than from his mother to have not accomplished his due as an husband.

There is quite a lot of sex in the story, but even it is accurate, having in mind, for example, Marion's innocence, or the discomfort of having sex in the wood without the proper equipment (oils and similar). All of that, managing to make it good and enjoyable nevertheless.

I think that the quality of this book is above to the usual level I found on Ellora's Cave and for once, even the cover is right for the story itself.


Amazon Kindle: Heart of a Forest

Reading List:

http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bottom.php?tag=reading list&view=elisa.rolle
Tags: author: angelia sparrow, author: naomi brooks, genre: historical, length: novel, review, theme: breeches rippers, theme: virgins

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