Aristocrat’s Ransom: Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

May 22, 2014 Review 34 ★★★★

Aristocrat’s Ransom: Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen
Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen
(Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository)

Publisher: Walker
Source: Purchased
Pages: 292
Release Date: February 14th 2012
Series: Scarlet #1
Genres: Historical, Young Adult
Many readers know the tale of Robin Hood, but they will be swept away by this new version full of action, secrets, and romance.

Posing as one of Robin Hood’s thieves to avoid the wrath of the evil Thief Taker Lord Gisbourne, Scarlet has kept her identity secret from all of Nottinghamshire. Only the Hood and his band know the truth: the agile thief posing as a whip of a boy is actually a fearless young woman with a secret past. Helping the people of Nottingham outwit the corrupt Sheriff of Nottingham could cost Scarlet her life as Gisbourne closes in.

It’s only her fierce loyalty to Robin—whose quick smiles and sharp temper have the rare power to unsettle her—that keeps Scarlet going and makes this fight worth dying for.

bec (2)

Two things: a) I am writing this review a few months after finishing SCARLET. My memory is not as good as it could be, and b) If you want to know what each of the headings below mean, it might be a good idea to check out this post

Major Selling Points:

Robin Hood

Robin Hood is one of the tales I’ve been most interested in for as long as I can remember (though I cannot remember if I’ve ever seen the Disney movie version…). I just love those criminal characters doing ‘bad’ things for good reasons, fighting against oppressors and having grand adventures.

Kick Ass Girls

Girls who can hold their own against the guys are always great to read about. (Unless they fall into the typical, too good at everything and still beautiful stereotype. That’s not fun. Fortunately our Scar isn’t one of those)


To sum up the plot of this novel according to my notes from forever ago: FLUFFY LIGHTNESS THAT IS STILL VIOLENT AND AWESOME. SCARLET is filled with fight scenes and laughs and suspense. The characters have intriguing motives and there were some really interesting characters and plot lines. Romance was more heavily part of the story than I expected, but not to unbearable levels. My only really criticism is that I did guess a few plot twists quite early on, but overall SCARLET was really enjoyable and amazing.


I can see people having issues with the writing in this novel. SCARLET is written in a sort of dialect.  It took a bit of getting used to, but  I really liked the way it helped project me back into the time period and into Scarlet’s head. Occasionally it did get a little annoying, but overall it wasn’t too bad. I’ve read worse.



Scarlet was great! Sassy and confident and violent. Her knife skills and fights were such fun to read !! Her selflessness is admirable (though it does get to the point of not good. There is a basic level you need to look after yourself before you worry about other people).  And, of course, she has a heartbreaking background which is slowly revealed over the course of the novel. Only thing I didn’t  like was her indecisiveness when it came to certain things…


AHDKSJHkdj I REALLY LIKED ROBIN. Like others, he did get on my nerves, but I loved his character overall. Always putting others first and watching out for his band. Sometimes I wished he would be a bit more forward about things though. It would have cleared up so many conflicts.


“Little” John was funny. The player.  The big bloke that thinks with his fist (and… other areas). I did like him but he got on my nerves a bit more than the others. Just some of his actions, his sappy words, etc happened too often (which is probably because the guy can’t take a hint. Sort of)


SCARLET has a love triangle and I am CONFLICTED. Yes, capital letters conflicted. On the one hand I liked the way the romance was built slowly. AND THE TENSION FKFHKJHFS But on the other Scar tossed and turned so often and the whole thing had a bigger role in the story than I thought it would. Which isn’t a bad thing, but it meant less time for fight scenes and thievery.


  • Robin x Scarlet
  • Scarlet x John
  • Scarlet x Knives
  • Much x more page time
  • Gisbourne x a special place in Hell
Rating Report
Overall: 4.1

34 Responses to “Aristocrat’s Ransom: Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen”

    • Bec

      Scarlet was really good! There aren’t that many retellings of Robin Hood out there though :/ Not many that have made their way into my hands…

    • Bec

      Doooo iiiiiit! hahaa I am very familiar with that scenario. Though I have been doing well lately. My buying ban is working!

  1. Kirsty-Marie

    I’ve never been that interested in Robin Hood, though I did watch the BBC series off an on (that was mainly for Jonas Armstrong though) I’d probably have issues with the writing then but I mean, you don’t exactly know until you’ve at least tried it, right? So I won’t rule it out, because badass female lead and a love triangle I might actually like, yes.
    Kirsty-Marie recently posted…Review: Run

    • Bec

      I haven’t seen the BBC series… though I’ve seen it on tumblr a few times. Haven’t decided if I’m going to watch it yet.

      Yeah, the writing is probably going to break it for a lot of people. BUT it really does add to the whole… feeling of the world, if that makes sense.

  2. Micheline @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews

    Gah! I have heard SO many awesome things about this one I NEED to get my hands on it like yesterday! I am a bit bummed out that you mention a love-triangle…I think conflicted is a good word. Regardless it still got over a 4-star for you so I will hopefully be starting this one soon! Scarlet and Robin sound absolutely brilliant ^^ Glad you enjoyed this one!!
    Micheline @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews recently posted…Review: The Search Part III

    • Bec

      YES YOU DO!!!

      It’s a very conflicting situation. But I think the triangle has been solved by end of book one and won’t drag on for the entire series (I don’t love both love interests enough for me to be behind it that long)

  3. Asti

    Oh yay! I got this one as a gift for my birthday and I’m super curious about it. I mean, you can’t really go wrong with kick ass girls, and we definitely don’t get enough Robin Hood for our YA hearts. And I mean, fluffy lightness that is still violent and awesome? I totally can get behind that.

    I’m not even bothered by the lingo. It might be a bit weird, but authors experimentation with dialogue has never bothered me too much. I can’t wait to read it. :D
    Asti recently posted…Audiobook Review | Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

    • Bec

      We need more YA Robin Hoods yessss (but not so many that it gets repetitive).

      Sometimes those dialogue experiments end up being AMAZING. Other times… ugh. I thought it worked with SCARLET though.

      Hope you love it when you read it!!

    • Bec

      All the characters bothered me at times, but I think that makes them a little more real. It was really hard to back just one love interest! Both had lots of potential.

  4. A Canadian Girl

    I thought this one was a solid read. I really liked Scarlet (the character) but wasn’t too fond of the romance and my issues with Robin were pretty much what you mentioned, Bec – that rather than being up front about his feelings, he hid them and therefore created conflicts.
    A Canadian Girl recently posted…Review: Plus One by Elizabeth Fama

    • Bec


      (saying that, it did create a lot of tension. Which can be fun to read about. Sometime. When you want that kind of thing… Other times it’s just too much)

  5. Melliane

    Oh a love triangle. I saw this one a lot when it was released I confess but I haven’t read it yet. I heard many great things about it though and your review makes me want to try it as well mainly as I love retellings! I should try! thanks for the review!
    Melliane recently posted…Discount Armageddon by Seanan McGuire

  6. Tanja

    I think that Robin Hood is one of the stories I haven’t read a retelling of yet. It’s not that I don’t want to but I had no idea that this is that retelling. That happens when you don’t read blurbs *facepalm* But I do have you amazing people to tell me that. I’m so glad you enjoyed this one and I’m really curious about that romance. Even that love-triangle doesn’t sound too bad. Great review, Bec! :)
    Tanja recently posted…ARC Review – The Lost by Sarah Beth Durst

    • Bec

      There aren’t many retellings out there! In the YA world at least… that I know of anyway.

      If I were to compare it to other love triangles I’ve read about, it was a pretty good one.

      Thanks :)

    • Bec

      *Shoves copy at you through computer screen*

      In all seriousness, I think you’d like this (if you haven’t already). You should read it (and get conflicted over that love triangle with the rest of us)

    • Bec

      It is irritating, but this isn’t as bad as some other books I’ve read. And there’s still enough other stuff going on that is doesn’t drag everything down.


    • Bec

      It’s not a bad love triangle is that’s any consolation. I still really enjoyed the entire book :)

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge