Everyone knows the Robin Hood legend, but for this retelling, Phyllis Ann Karr has found a historical precident to create a female Sheriff of Nottingham and suddenly the whole myth explodes, taking on new meanings that resonate deep within contemporary culture...
The sheriffship of Nottingham was hereditary in the Flechedor line. As its last, childless scion, Dame Alice had installed her beloved husband, Sir Roger of Doncaster, also sometimes called Roger the Red for the color of his hair, as her vice-sheriff. Three years ago, Robin Hood and his ruffians— poachers and murderers all—had capped their bloody rescue of the infamous William Stutely by tearing down the gallows from its scaffold in Nottingham town square, casting it up again in a little glade within the bounds of Sherwood forest, and hanging the vice-sheriff from it.
Dame Alice had vowed she would have vengeance, which in such a case would be no more than due justice under the Law.
A few poached deer she and her husband could have overlooked. The king, having many royal forests, came seldom to Sherwood. Had the outlaws rested content to live off the land, doing no harm to folk who still lived within the jurisdiction and protection of the Law, they might have been tolerated as something resembling informal foresters, paid in kind rather than coin. But the armed robberies could not be overlooked, committed as they were with much gratuitous rough play and humiliation upon loyal, peaceable subjects of the king, whose only crimes were to possess wealth and to travel the Great North Road or some common right of way through woodland and royal forest.