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Extended Audio Sample The Black Arrow Audiobook, by Robert Louis Stevenson Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (5,651 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Robert Louis Stevenson Narrator: Shelly Frasier Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: November 2008 ISBN: 9781400179145
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England is in the throes of the War of the Roses. As the houses of Lancaster and York vie for the crown, young Richard Shelton eagerly serves under his guardian, Sir Daniel Brackley, whose lessons he hopes will make him worthy of becoming a knight.

But Sir Daniel and his allies have been targeted by the outlaws known as the fellowship of the Black Arrow. This band of archers has a different lesson to teach Dick about loyalty, honor, revenge, and the ambiguities between good and evil.

Originally serialized in a periodical of boys’ adventure fiction, The Black Arrow furthered the genre of the historical novel through its swashbuckling action and its portrayal of a young man’s journey to discover the heroism within himself.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “The time is fifteenth-century England, and Richard Shelton, the young hero, overcomes one obstacle after another."

    School Library Journal

  • “If one is handing out awards, The Black Arrow would certainly…be in contention for the most sheerly readable of Robert Louis Stevenson's books.”

    John Sutherland, author and Guardian (London) columnist 

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Rob Roy | 2/18/2014

    " Treasure Island was an excellent tale with just enough quaint dialog to make it real. Black Arrow is as good a tale, but gets lost in the dialog. Stevenson went overboard here. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bob | 2/6/2014

    " A read from my grade school years but still remember some of the scenes. Set in England during the conflicts between Lancaster and York it features young Richard Sheldon who on being orphaned is the ward of Sir Daniel Barckley a particularly nasty nobleman who would change sides whenever it was to his advantage and used his position to acquire money and lands in less than legal ways. Richard befriends an young boy who is escaping from Sir Daniel's entourage and begins and adventure of deadly battles, a found love, a meeting with Richard Crookback, Duke of Gloucester and a Knighthood. My biggest problem was getting used to the syntax and spelling of the English of the period, especially that of the barely lettered. Fun nostalgia read and one for a book challenge (Title with a color in it.) "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Aisha | 2/1/2014

    " I read an abridged version... so I dunno if the original would be much better... But I'd give this a 2.5, not 2* :) "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lizzy | 1/27/2014

    " School book project... slow beginning...didn't finish it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jacqui Ainsworth | 1/21/2014

    " I had never read this but had bought a couple for our library so I decided to give it a shot. It was exciting and a definite page turner. I had some concerns about the protagonist's choices but that all worked out. The female character really bothered me. She showed great promise as a strong character then she just faints. Often. It was worth reading but I won't push it for my daughter to read, there are too many others in the genre with strong females. At least not milksops. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jane Ellen | 1/13/2014

    " Robert Louis Stevenson is famous for his well-known intriguing tales like Treasure Island, Kidnapped, and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. However, The Black Arrow pleased me just as much as, if not more than, his popular titles. Set during the War of the Roses, The Black Arrow combines mystery, excitement, and innocent romance. A lovely Bildungsroman that I will definitely read again. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jill | 1/12/2014

    " Pretty slow to get started, but once you're in, not too bad. Fairly fun characters, a decent plot, etc. This is a knight and lady story. I knew nothing of what it was about until I read it. Pretty fun, but nothing earth-shattering. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jacqui | 1/9/2014

    " Robert Louis does it again! I think I liked this one best out of all the RLS books I've read. It was so exciting! and the romance had some tension and genuine affection. It made more sense why they liked each other, not so well done in Catriona "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alice Sather | 1/8/2014

    " Good for me when I was 10. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kevin | 1/2/2014

    " An OK adventure story set in the War of the Roses. The book moves slowly. Stevenson's classic, Treasure Island, is much better. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dharmesh | 12/25/2013

    " a gd timepass "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Joshua Cliburn | 12/25/2013

    " Pretty dull and bland. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Charles | 12/23/2013

    " Quite good, if somewhat predictable for the modern reader. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Turnipprincess | 12/21/2013

    " I had read this book in highschool, and it was so confusing to me, everything seemed to run together and I had a hard time understanding what was going on, mind you I went to a private school and I made excellent grades. I decided to give it another try in college, and still I do not like this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rach | 12/13/2013

    " A little tough to read, but a good story, if you can understand the old English. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rhaegar | 12/11/2013

    " Awesome for a young teenager; I think it has helped develop my taste for girls in mens clothes! :) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Erin | 11/30/2013

    " It can be a hard read - but I love the story. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gemma | 11/17/2013

    " I think this is my favourite Stevenson. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mari | 11/4/2013

    " No one should make it through adolescence without reading this book. Battles, knights, disguises, a wicked king, passageways behind the tapestries... No childhood dream is unfulfilled. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Andrea | 10/14/2013

    " This is my favourite Stevenson novel. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dharmesh | 9/16/2013

    " a gd timepass "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Naomi Brown | 9/10/2013

    " This book is really, really good. If you've never read it before, and if you have the version I do, it's hard to grasp at first. It may take three or four times reading it over before you understand it. But it's a good book. I love it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jeanie | 8/17/2013

    " Too much adventure for me. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alice Sather | 4/14/2013

    " Good for me when I was 10. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elijah Kinch Spector | 3/27/2013

    " A very exciting novel, although later on it never quite recaptures the excitement of the beginning. I hope to write a longer review someday. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nathan | 3/5/2013

    " I had never even heard of this book, but after reading Stevenson's well-known classics, Treasure Island, Kidnapped and Jekyll and Hyde, I decided to give it a try when I found it at the library. This is just as good as his others. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elijah Kinch Spector | 1/15/2013

    " A very exciting novel, although later on it never quite recaptures the excitement of the beginning. I hope to write a longer review someday. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Rob Roy | 3/18/2012

    " Treasure Island was an excellent tale with just enough quaint dialog to make it real. Black Arrow is as good a tale, but gets lost in the dialog. Stevenson went overboard here. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Eric Castro | 2/24/2012

    " Classic swashbuckler. The Old English gets tiresome, fast. Read in two sittings. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Barbara | 12/14/2011

    " My sons call this genre "swish-buckling" and it's a grand example of the type. Stevenson's characters are interesting and imperfect, making for an intriguing, but fast, read. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Anna | 10/19/2011

    " I really was not that impressed. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Megan | 9/23/2011

    " I loved the movie by Disney as a kid (not so much as an adult), I love the book even more! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Deveny | 8/25/2011

    " Classic that everyone should read. "

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About the Author
Author Robert Louis Stevenson

Robert Louis Stevenson (1850–1894) was born in Scotland. He studied engineering and law at the University of Edinburgh and then began writing while traveling in France. The publication of Treasure Island in 1883 brought him fame and entered him on a course of romantic fiction beloved by young and old alike.

About the Narrator

Shelly Frasier has appeared in many independent film and theater projects in Arizona and Southern California and has done voice-over work for commercials and animation projects. She trained at the Groundlings Improv School in Hollywood and South Coast Repertory’s Professional Conservatory in Costa Mesa, California. She has performed at theaters throughout North Hollywood and Orange County. Recent performances include Blue Window, The Battle of Bull Run Always Makes Me Cry, The Haunting of Hill House, and a British farcical version of A Christmas Carol. She resides in Hollywood.