Three years ago, the events of the first book Greenwode drove Rob of Loxley into Sherwood Forest where he became the outlaw Robyn Hode. He is still good-hearted and passionate, but now he has been tempered by sorrow. He is not as carefree or impulsive as he used to be. He tries not to think of his sister Marion or his lover Gamelyn, both of whom he believes perished with his parents and their village. Now he has his hands full with his band of outlaws as they rob their Norman overlords and wealthy churchmen venturing through the forest, and they redistribute the wealth to the peasantry who suffer under the rule of the evil Prince John.
But Marion is still alive. Having lost her memory, she now lives in Nottingham as a novice nun and servant to the evil Abbess. And Gamelyn, who became a Templar Knight and went to the Third Crusade with King Richard, has now earned a new name, Guy de Gisbourne. Haunted by his combat experiences, and grieving for Rob and Marion whom he believes to be dead, Gisbourne returns to England to work for the Sheriff of Nottingham.
The first job the Sheriff has for Gisbourne to hunt down and kill the outlaws preying upon wealthy travelers through Sherwood Forest. Gisbourne and his faithful servant Much set out to track Robyn down and learn the secret of his identity. If the tragedies from the first book Greenwode have not altered the essential goodness at Robís core, then they have almost transformed young Gamelyn completely. As Guy de Gisbourne, Gamelyn has become a terrific anti-hero, projecting electrifying menace. Is he evil now, or does some sweetness remain? When the two men learn of Marion, it isnít long before they piece together the truths about each otherís identities in this fast-paced epic adventure that includes daring escapes and rescues, an archery tournament, and the extended appearance of the evil Prince John.
Shirewode builds a breathtaking story with supernatural touches used sparing and strategically. It includes vivid supporting characters and strong female characters. And the sexual tension between the nihilistic Gisbourne and the wounded hero Robyn is unforgettable as they earn their happy ending. Do yourself a favor and clear your calendar for the weekend, pick up both Greenwode and Shirewode, and read them back to back. Youíll be glad you did.
Type of Romance: LGBT Gay Romance
Author: J. Tullos Hennig
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Subgenre: Historical Romance, Robin Hood legend
Length: 168,288 words
Setting: 12th century England
Sex scenes: Level 3 Ė Subtle (See Levels of Explicitness in Related Links below)
Viewpoint: omniscient with third-person alternating viewpoints from major and minor characters
Note: I received this book via the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I received no compensation for this review from author or publisher. Look on Amazon.com for Shirewode (The Wode Book 2)