Title: Lady Thief
Author: A.C. Gaughen (Scarlet)
Publisher: Walker Childrens
Scarlet’s true identity has been revealed, but her future is uncertain. Her forced marriage to Lord Gisbourne threatens Robin and Scarlet’s love, and as the royal court descends upon Nottingham for the appointment of a new Sheriff, the people of Nottingham hope that Prince John will appoint their beloved Robin Hood. But Prince John has different plans for Nottingham that revolve around a fateful secret from Scarlet’s past even she isn’t yet aware of. Forced to participate at court alongside her ruthless husband, Scarlet must bide her time and act the part of a noblewoman—a worthy sacrifice if it means helping Robin’s cause and a chance at a future with the man she loves. With a fresh line of intrigue and as much passion as ever, the next chapter in Scarlet’s tale will have readers talking once again.
Despite taking time to process this book after finishing it, I’m still not quite sure what to say about it. Well, that’s not entirely true – there are many, many things I’d like to say about it, but I’m trying to be as coherent as possible – hopefully that’ll happen.
Scarlet was a surprise hit for me when I first read it. I hadn’t really heard much about it prior to reading it, and I didn’t really begin hearing anything about it until the past few months, in preparation for the release of this book. I’m not a fan of grammatical mistakes, so reading a book written with grammatical mistakes as part of the dialect (mostly noun and verb not agreeing – so, “I were there,” “they was here,” that type of thing) was a bit daunting to me. I ended up getting sucked in by the story and the characters, though, and the writing (well, the mistakes anyway) barely registered for me.
Coming into this book, I was even more scared – there was just so much pressure. I really enjoyed the first book, so it had to live up to that, and hype was beginning to build over Scarlet and this book, so that was more pressure. I’m not too lucky with hype most of the time – it often makes me dislike a book that I would normally consider neutral or alright. So, yeah, I was a bit scared coming into this book. I also knew that things could be a bit bleak, and thought I was prepared for any bleakness in this book (warning: I was not).
Well, I’m happy to say that this book lived up to the all the hype and pressure, at least for me. Things were definitely different from the world Scarlet lived in when we last saw her. The first book is much more outdoorsy and desperate and comfortable (well, kind of). This book was largely moved into the even more cutthroat world of the royal court, with new and scary adventures and problems to deal with. There are new villains to fear and more people to fear for, because this is not a world that wants to keep people happy.
Seriously, if you are the type of person who prefers happy endings and stories where the problems are more dramatic than extremely painful, then this is probably not the book for you. There are many scenes that I felt like I could barely handle. Things get dark, and things can be just downright depressing, yet you care for these characters so much and want to know what happens that you keep pushing through. If I remember correctly, I read this book in less than a day. Like, started it in the morning, went to class, and came back to read the rest of it before heading out for (an admittedly late) dinner. I just had to know what was going to happen!
And, of course, there’s romance in this book. When I first read Scarlet, and when I reread it, I loved all the swoony moments, from little moments to extreme chemistry-pushing ones. I couldn’t help but feel that some people might complain about them, saying there’s too much of a focus on the romance at times, but I never felt that way. I think I would have been happier with a few more adorable and swoony moments, to be honest. I mean, there were scenes where I couldn’t keep a little smile off my face – that almost never happens to me. I actually tear up at books a lot, but have a little smile on them while I read – very rare.
By the time I got to the end, my emotions were already all over the place, but A. C. Gaughen wasn’t done with them yet. I was kind of in a book hangover for at least a day, still thinking about it and freaking out over it and wondering how the hell I’m going to wait until the third book comes out. You’re about to get a little string of fluffier book reviews because I needed fluff and happiness and all that to get over this book.
But don’t be mistaken – I loved every minute of this emotion-crushing sequel, and I’m so ready for the final book already.