My Take on… Nottingham vs. Robin Hood

Book Reviews

I read the book Nottingham by Nathan Makaryk and was a bit disappointed. Is this the same Robin Hood that I remembered? Maybe it was time for me to refresh my memory. So here is where my research began.

My son was a HUGE fan of Robin Hood as a child. I even made him a Robin Hood costume for Halloween one year. So I went to the source to ask for a copy of The Adventures of Robin Hood. He leant me his copy, which I devoured. Now this was more like it!

Nottingham was a rewrite of the legendary Robin Hood story. It reads like a movie. Makaryk is writing his novel in a ‘what if?’ fashion, hence, changing things up a bit. He makes lesser characters have larger roles and greater characters have lesser roles. What has he done to Robin Hood?! In Makaryk’s version, it is made out that Robin Hood did not really want to help the poor and did the job only because he felt made to do it. Really! Come on! No, this was not how I remembered Robin Hood. I felt too much liberty was taken with the story, especially in the character of Robin Hood.

The Adventures of Robin Hood by Roger Lancelyn Green, was on point to me. This was the Robin Hood who stole from the rich and gave to the poor. This was the Robin Hood who cared for his followers. Every chapter was interesting and had me wanting to continue. While Robin meets the same fate in the end of each novel, they are in two completely different ways. I prefer the storyline and ending in The Adventures of Robin Hood.

While Nottingham is a well written book, I felt that the book took too many liberties with the storyline and characters. I could forgive most of the changes, but not those to the integrity of Robin Hood. Maybe I just prefer classics to be left alone. After all, if it isn’t broke, why try to fix it?