Chapter By Chapter features me reading one chapter of the selected book at the time and reviewing it as if I were reviewing an episode of a TV show or an issue of a comic. There will be spoilers if you haven’t read to the point I have, and if you’ve read further I ask that you don’t spoil anything further into the book. Think of it as read-along book club.
Remember, the book is in public domain. Download or read the ebook online legally and for free at Project Gutenberg, Google Books or the Internet Archive among other sites, or check out the audiobook from LibriVox. You can also use a print copy. In either case my copy may not match up with yours chapter-wise. Follow along with the very-long subtitle. For this chapter:
The Actual Part Second
In which ShadowWing Tronix fixes a mistake made by the New York Public School in 1948…I mean…In which shall be told how Robin Hood turned butcher, and how he revenged himself on The Sheriff Of Nottingham. Also of the famous adventures that befell Little John at the Nottingham Archery Match, and how he entered the Sheriff’s service.
When last we visited Sherwood via Internet Archive timewarp (because this part, which should have been part second, was left out of the copy of this book I own), Robin had become a butcher and further messed with the Sheriff. It’s hard to tell which one to root for here. They’re both jerks. The next chapter moves to an adventure with Little John. Let’s see how this one ends poorly.
II: Little John goes to the Fair at Nottingham Town
Tis time for the annual fair but the Sheriff is worried Robin Hood will show up and make sport of him again. This was some time after the famed (and often exaggerated) archery contest that failed to bring Robin in as the recent (but forgotten according to the narrator) trick with the butcher’s guise. His solution is to offer a prize too small for Robin and company to care about, but Little John decides to go anyway on general principle. After all, if we’ve learned anything about these guys is they never learn.
So John goes to the fair and parties like it’s 1399. Then he comes upon the quarterstaff matches and finds everyone scared of one particular participant, Eric O’ Lincoln. Eric sees John and decides to goad him into fighting. Ask Robin how well that went. It didn’t go much better for Eric. Then he moves on to the archery contest and wins that handily. Hearing all this the Sheriff offers this man, who gives the name of “Reynold Greenleaf” a job and a place to stay in Nottingham Castle. Because bad ideas are the norm for our heroes he accepts, hoping to have his own fun with the Sheriff. Yeah, I see this ending badly for someone.
For whom we’ll have to wait until next time as the story concludes in the next chapter, as we finally complete the section of Pyle’s book not in the New York Schools version. Thus far we haven’t missed too much this chapter and only a few minor starting points of trends in the previous chapter. Will this next chapter prove this should have been part second, as it was in the original?
Next time: How Little John lived at the Sheriff’s house.