Robin Hood

Whilst staying at my mother’s cottage by the sea this week, I was leafing through her bookshelves and found a delightful children’s version of Robin Hood from the 1930’s. It had been awarded to my father for a Sunday School prize. That was a surprise in itself, because he’d never mentioned anything about going to church in his youth, let alone Sunday School. He had apparently score 85% for something or other. Knowing Dad, that’s no surprise as he was something of a high-achieving intellectual, finishing his life with a qualification in Mandarin Chinese, both written and spoken!

I found a seat in the sunroom and curled up in the late afternoon light to read. It took me about about 45 minutes. The pages were parchment-like, thick and smelling of aged paper. The illustrations were on every third or fourth page, simple line drawings with the odd coloured single page illustration.

The language was quite advanced in parts, unbelievably primary in others and in the light of what writers go through now, lightly edited to the point where I wondered if it had been edited at all.

The contents were many of the stories we know from fable, from Errol Flynn’s movie, from Richard Green’s TV series and even from the most recent BBC drama series. It seems the legend is very strong.

But the thing I found most shocking and breathtaking, was not once was Guy of Gisborne mentioned.

In its way this frees me completely in writing my novel. I can write Guy in any way I like.

What a super little find!