In this dazzling, original tale, Carrie Lofty imagines a new chapter in the well-loved Robin Hood fable. Meet Robin's rakish nephew, Will Scarlet, a man whose talents with the sword and the ladies are legendary--until his desire for one woman changes everything.***
A swordsman for the Sheriff of Nottingham, Will Scarlet has finally emerged from his famous uncle's shadow. But when he's unwittingly drawn into a bloody battle between the Sheriff and a nobleman, it's impossible to tell friend from foe. A woman's screams lead Will straight into the carnage to save her--but the ravishing young lady is not the helpless maid she appears to be...
Meg of Keyworth lost her sight to illness years ago, but that hasn't stopped her mission to save her imprisoned sister, who's been arrested by none other than Will Scarlet. Meg wants to hate Will for betraying her family, but he sparks heated desire in her heart--a desire that only he can satisfy. Meg is lovely and loving, and bedding her is sensual bliss. To please her in every way is what he wants most, for Will knows he will cherish her forever....
Thank you! I'm happy to have founded this place two years ago, because I always believed I'd have something to promote someday. Thanks to all the great ladies who contribute month after month for keeping our little corner of the internet running strong.
So what question are you most frequently asked about this book, and why is it so important to answer?
By far, it's "Why Will Scarlet?" I think people are curious. Many Robin Hood books have been written, just like King Arthur and other English legends, but rarely have authors touched on Will Scarlet's role in the old folktales--and certainly not within a romance. Overwhelmingly, the response from people I've pitched to has been postive. Most people have an idea of who Will Scarlet is, which makes him ambiguous, mysterious and open to interpretation, and they're curious as to what my interpretation will be.
Did Will Scarlet actually exist?
No. He's a creation who appeared first in A Gest of Robyn Hode in the late 15th century, and he's been know by so many different names: Scarlett, Scarlock, Scadlock, Scatheloke, and Scathelocke. In these same ballads, he's been a cad, a sidekick, a thug, a victim, a teenager, a turncoat, a dandy--basically whatever the author needed him to be for the purposes of their Robin Hood story. I just decided to take his character a step further and see if he had the mettle to be a hero.
Talk a bit about Meg. Did people really know how to do what she does? And what about her blindness?
I based the circumstances of her blindness on the meningitis Johnny Rotten (the Sex Pistols) suffered as a child. He went into a coma for six months, reawakened with no memories, and has endured vision problems all his life. As for her knowledge of science, I gave her a very influential and knowledgeable great-uncle to draw from: Adelard of Bath. He was a man well ahead of his time, so it seems only natural that he'd be related to an equally avante garde woman. From explosions to salt acid to understanding that the earth is round, Adelard was a brilliant guy. I had fun intergrating his learning into my story.
Now that you're all done writing and proofing WHAT A SCOUNDREL WANTS, what will you miss the most about it?
I loved being inside Will's head. The poor guy is trying so hard to be bad, to take the simple and self-serving way out, but he just can't manage it. His conscience and sense of justice are just too strong. That push-pull between desire and righteousness was a lot of fun, quick, witty, snarky fun to write. But I certainly won't miss writing from Meg's blind point of view. That was a trick and a half!
So what's the skinny on this big contest?
You still have a day or two to get involved. My long-time friend Ann Aguirre is sponsoring it, so go have a blast with the free goodies. I'm also hosting a contest (on a much smaller scale) on my website.
What's next for you?
The sequel to WHAT A SCOUNDREL WANTS, currently titled SCOUNDREL'S KISS, will be released in late 2009. In it, a Spanish warrior monk falls for the woman he's sworn to protect, but she tempts him to abandon his vows of obedience, non-violence and chastity.
"The leading man will win readers' hearts as only a bad boy can. Lofty writes adventure romance like a born bard of old." 4 Stars ~ Kathe Robin, Romantic Times BOOKreviews
"A clever imagining of characters we thought we knew. I thoroughly enjoyed it."
~ Jo Goodman, USA Today Bestselling Author
Even though there are contests aplenty running around the internet at the moment, we're still giving away a signed copy of WHAT A SCOUNDREL WANTS right here at Unusual Historicals, as well as a copy of my debut short story, "Sundial". Your question: who or what do you think of when you hear the name Will Scarlet? A winner will be drawn at random in one week. Good luck, and thanks for supporting Unusual Historicals!