This is a book I literally slept with.
There was no way of taking it away from me.
‘The Black Arrow’ came as Christmas present from my father, who had already lighted the spark of my book-mania giving me ‘The Mysterious Island‘ at the tender age of 4.
Then, when I was 7 (or around that age, anyway) he had the great idea to give another little boost to my already racing obsession with my first thrilling, captivating, awesome story by Robert Louis Stevenson.
Being only a young Italian gal, I didn’t really had any idea about what went on in England during the War of the Roses; I didn’t know what York and Lancaster were, Richard Crookback was just a random name written in very nice book and so on.
Nonetheless, I could I not fall for Dick Shelton, who’s seeking revenge after his father murder, killed by the very man Dick was serving.
On his way through Tunstall Forest, Dick falls in with a young lad, John Matcham. Little does he know that it’s not really a boy the one he’s walking with…
Disguised as John Matcham is actually the young heiress Joanna Sedley, who persuades him to give his sympathies to the Black Arrow company, turning against sir Daniel.
As I wrote already, I was very little interested in the historical events, but I got entangled in the romance, in this story about knights and endangered thrones, damsels to rescue and arranged marriages to overturn.
On and on, until the last Black Arrow is thrown.
“But be at rest; the Black Arrow flieth nevermore – the fellowship is broken.”
The Black Arrow, Robert Louis Stevenson
It was an intense, thrilling fairytale, with an irresistible hint for a grown-up story that made me know for sure that there were great adventures to be lived and strong knights to meet even when the time of magic seemed to be lost behind.
Then again, who says there’s no magic in a story like this of Dick Shelton and the company of the Black Arrow?
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