At the time this blog post is published, this novella is available for free.
Simone’s New Camelot series wrecked me as a reader in all the best ways, often leaving me in tears and leading to some virtual flailing at a fellow fan via text. The journey was worth every bit of the angst, and I look forward to re-reading those books when my heart can handle it again. I was thrilled to learn that Simone is planning future works set in that world, centering on additional historical legends made modern. The surprise release of this novella, which features a romantic suspense twist on the Robin Hood story, was a pleasant surprise that I read as soon as I could get my hands on it.
This story’s allegories to the characters and tropes of the Robin Hood mythos are both obvious and completely appropriate. I especially loved that this Robin is cast as a woman, creating a less-represented dynamic between the main trio. The past connections Lox/Robin has with both Marian and Rafe are layered into the story without ever causing the pace to drag. In another life, Lox might have found a way to be happy with either person, but in the world of this story, the instant connection between Rafe and Marian is what balances (and facilitates) the passion between all three of them.
I wasn’t expecting the depth and excitement of the external plot, and that is not a complaint. Along with featuring other familiar characters, Simone puts an intriguing modern spin on how this band of Merry Men achieves their outlaw status. Sure, there’s plenty of delicious steam and kink. But there’s also substantial danger and alphabet soup agency-style shenanigans. This story does not end on a cliffhanger, but it’s obvious that their role is merely part of a larger story that will be explored in later books.
This novella references details from the New Camelot books, but in such a way that reading this as a stand-alone is completely possible. I highly recommend checking it out for an excellent taste of Simone’s writing.
Rating: 5 (out of 5) stars. Cross-posted to Goodreads.