Book Review – Earl of Huntingdon by N.B Dixon


Outlaw’s Legacy #3
Publisher: Beaten Track Publishing
Pages: 298
Characters: Robin/Will
POV: 3rd
Genre: Historical, LGBTQ

Blurb:
He was once Robin Hood, bold outlaw of Sherwood; now he is Robin of Huntingdon, one of the most powerful earls in England.

Sir Roger of Doncaster, an enemy from Robin’s crusading days, is back in England and determined to take Huntingdon for his own. Caught in a desperate struggle for survival, Robin’s only solace is Will Scathelock, the man he has loved and resisted for years. Surrendering would be easy, but the stakes have never been higher. Roger has the might of King John behind him, and he will not rest until Robin is dead. Win or lose, Robin’s life will never be the same.

Buy Link

Review

I loved the first two books in this series, so was very excited to be able to read the third and final installment. It didn’t disappoint!

I was very impressed with how the author pulled me into the story and its characters, and especially with how I felt about Marion. I began the book by not liking her very much, especially as I’d known the part she’d played in ensuring Robin wedded her. But then I started to feel sympathetic toward her, and by the end of the book I wanted her to get her own happy ending. She really is a product of her time, yet in saying that doesn’t excuse her actions. All the women in this story have strong personalities and aren’t afraid to fight by the men’s side. I particularly liked John’s wife, Daphne, who was a force to be reckoned with.

In contrast Roger is a real piece of work, and has no redeeming features what-so-ever. I disliked him a couple of paragraphs after he appeared, and I thought the author did a great job in showing what a horrible person he was, his actions toward Robin in the previous book aside.

Robin comes across as very real, especially with the way he’s torn by doing the right thing by Marian and his obvious love for Will. I thought Will’s reaction, which is far from passive, was realistic. I felt for him, watching the man he loves with someone else, yet drawn back to him when logic says he should be walking away. I also appreciated how their relationship was written true to the time, and carried the very real risks—and reactions of others—that came with two men being discovered in a relationship.

I liked how the passage of time between when Robin and his men were outlaws, and several years later was handled, especially with how their knowledge of Sherwood Forest becomes patchy when they haven’t lived there for a while. I loved the glimpses of Robin Hood in the now Earl of Huntingdon, before he shows exactly why he deserves his reputation as a beloved outlaw. The author has done a lot of historical research of the time, and it shows. The settings were very visual, and easy to imagine, and the battles very edge-of-seat and exciting.

As a long time follower of the Robin Hood legends, I loved the way the author tied this story back to the legends, especially with the ending, and the Abbess. Be warned that not everyone survives the story, which, given the time and what happens is realistic. However, I found the ending very satisfactory, and am sad that this series has come to an end.

I’d recommend Earl of Huntingdon to readers who enjoy not only stories about Robin Hood, but well researched historical stories with plenty of action, and interesting characters who draw the reader in, and don’t let go until well after reading. 5 out of 5 stars.

About Anne Barwell

Anne Barwell lives in Wellington, New Zealand. She shares her home with a cat with “tortitude” who is convinced that the house is run to suit her; this is an ongoing “discussion,” and to date, it appears as though Kaylee may be winning. In 2008, Anne completed her conjoint BA in English Literature and Music/Bachelor of Teaching. She has worked as a music teacher, a primary school teacher, and now works in a library. She is a member of the Upper Hutt Science Fiction Club and plays violin for Hutt Valley Orchestra. She is an avid reader across a wide range of genres and a watcher of far too many TV series and movies, although it can be argued that there is no such thing as “too many.” These, of course, are best enjoyed with a decent cup of tea and further the continuing argument that the concept of “spare time” is really just a myth. She also hosts and reviews for other authors, and writes monthly blog posts for Love Bytes. She is the co-founder of the New Zealand Rainbow Romance writers, and a member of RWNZ. Anne’s books have received honorable mentions five times, reached the finals four times—one of which was for best gay book—and been a runner up in the Rainbow Awards. She has also been nominated twice in the Goodreads M/M Romance Reader’s Choice Awards—once for Best Fantasy and once for Best Historical. Anne can be found at https://annebarwell.wordpress.com
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