The Black Arrow: A Tale of the Two Roses by Robert Louis Stevenson is an adrenaline thumping saga of deceit, revenge, murder and conspiracy set in the era of the Wars of Roses in England. Stevenson's main protagonist, Richard Shelton is decidedly naïve yet he carries a strong moral sense that eventually sees him through difficult times. The plot revolves around Shelton's changing relationship with his guardian who turns out to be his worst enemy.
The book is spread across five sections, each more dramatic than the other. Stevenson keeps the pace lightning fast while constructing subplots and detailing each of his characters. Daniel Brackley as Shelton's guardian is portrayed as the epitome of evil while others like Will Lawless and Joanna Sedley provide perfect examples of friendship and love respectively.
The Black Arrow: A Tale of the Two Roses is as much a story of romance as it is of revenge and betrayal. Stevenson establishes the relationship between Joanna and Richard with great poise and panache. As the story progresses, however, the protagonist is drawn into a greater cause than just his personal crisis and that is where the author is able to bring out the trials and tribulations of medieval England in the throes of the bloodthirsty Wars of Roses. Full of action and drama, The Black Arrow: A Tale of the Two Roses will appeal to a wide audience of readers as it brings together various elements to create a beautifully woven tale of victory over evil.