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Travelers Along the Way: A Robin Hood Remix

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A ragtag band of misfits gets swept up in Holy Land politics in Travelers Along the Way by Aminah Mae Safi, a thrilling YA remix of the classic legend of Robin Hood. Jerusalem, 1192. The Third Crusade rages on. Rahma al-Hud loyally followed her elder sister Zeena into the war over the Holy Land, but now that the Faranji invaders have gotten reinforcements from Richard the L A ragtag band of misfits gets swept up in Holy Land politics in Travelers Along the Way by Aminah Mae Safi, a thrilling YA remix of the classic legend of Robin Hood. Jerusalem, 1192. The Third Crusade rages on. Rahma al-Hud loyally followed her elder sister Zeena into the war over the Holy Land, but now that the Faranji invaders have gotten reinforcements from Richard the Lionheart, all she wants to do is get herself and her sister home alive. But Zeena, a soldier of honor at heart, refuses to give up the fight while Jerusalem remains in danger of falling back into the hands of the false Queen Isabella. And so, Rahma has no choice but to take on one final mission with her sister. On their journey to Jerusalem, Rahma and Zeena come across a motley collection of fellow travelers—including a kind-hearted Mongolian warrior, an eccentric Andalusian scientist, a frustratingly handsome spy with a connection to Rahma's childhood, and an unfortunate English chaplain abandoned behind enemy lines. The teens all find solace, purpose and camaraderie—as well as a healthy bit of mischief—in each other's company. But their travels soon bring them into the orbit of Queen Isabella herself, whose plans to re-seize power in Jerusalem would only guarantee further war and strife in the Holy Land for years to come. And so it falls to the merry band of misfits to use every scrap of cunning and wit (and not a small amount of thievery) to foil the usurper queen and perhaps finally restore peace to the land. Praise for Travelers Along the Way: "Rousing ... Wholly original in its cultural perspective and its centering of strong female characters. ... By creating an almost all-female cast, Safi makes women the heart of her story at a time when they were seen as a 'bargaining chip.'" —Shelf Awareness, starred review "If you love heists, found family, and stealing from the rich and giving to the poor, then put Aminah Mae Safi's heartfelt and humorous take on Robin Hood at the very top of your TBR." —Jodi Meadows, New York Times bestselling co-author of My Lady Jane


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A ragtag band of misfits gets swept up in Holy Land politics in Travelers Along the Way by Aminah Mae Safi, a thrilling YA remix of the classic legend of Robin Hood. Jerusalem, 1192. The Third Crusade rages on. Rahma al-Hud loyally followed her elder sister Zeena into the war over the Holy Land, but now that the Faranji invaders have gotten reinforcements from Richard the L A ragtag band of misfits gets swept up in Holy Land politics in Travelers Along the Way by Aminah Mae Safi, a thrilling YA remix of the classic legend of Robin Hood. Jerusalem, 1192. The Third Crusade rages on. Rahma al-Hud loyally followed her elder sister Zeena into the war over the Holy Land, but now that the Faranji invaders have gotten reinforcements from Richard the Lionheart, all she wants to do is get herself and her sister home alive. But Zeena, a soldier of honor at heart, refuses to give up the fight while Jerusalem remains in danger of falling back into the hands of the false Queen Isabella. And so, Rahma has no choice but to take on one final mission with her sister. On their journey to Jerusalem, Rahma and Zeena come across a motley collection of fellow travelers—including a kind-hearted Mongolian warrior, an eccentric Andalusian scientist, a frustratingly handsome spy with a connection to Rahma's childhood, and an unfortunate English chaplain abandoned behind enemy lines. The teens all find solace, purpose and camaraderie—as well as a healthy bit of mischief—in each other's company. But their travels soon bring them into the orbit of Queen Isabella herself, whose plans to re-seize power in Jerusalem would only guarantee further war and strife in the Holy Land for years to come. And so it falls to the merry band of misfits to use every scrap of cunning and wit (and not a small amount of thievery) to foil the usurper queen and perhaps finally restore peace to the land. Praise for Travelers Along the Way: "Rousing ... Wholly original in its cultural perspective and its centering of strong female characters. ... By creating an almost all-female cast, Safi makes women the heart of her story at a time when they were seen as a 'bargaining chip.'" —Shelf Awareness, starred review "If you love heists, found family, and stealing from the rich and giving to the poor, then put Aminah Mae Safi's heartfelt and humorous take on Robin Hood at the very top of your TBR." —Jodi Meadows, New York Times bestselling co-author of My Lady Jane

30 review for Travelers Along the Way: A Robin Hood Remix

  1. 4 out of 5

    Lex Kent

    3.50 Stars. Good but with some bumps. I love gender-bending and/or queer retellings (or remixes as this one is called), so a female Robin Hood book was a must read for me. I loved the Disney cartoon Robin Hood as a kid and it might be one of my most watched Disney cartoons of all-time. I also have seen the Kevin Costner Robin Hood movie more times that I can count since my mother was in love with it. I think she liked it since you got to see Costner’s butt, but my point is that Robin Hood was a 3.50 Stars. Good but with some bumps. I love gender-bending and/or queer retellings (or remixes as this one is called), so a female Robin Hood book was a must read for me. I loved the Disney cartoon Robin Hood as a kid and it might be one of my most watched Disney cartoons of all-time. I also have seen the Kevin Costner Robin Hood movie more times that I can count since my mother was in love with it. I think she liked it since you got to see Costner’s butt, but my point is that Robin Hood was a part of me growing up so it was easy to be excited to read this. Overall, I enjoyed the read and thought it was fun, but it wasn’t quite what I was hoping for. Since I read so many sapphic books I do want to first say that while I will put the LGBTQ+ tag on this book, I would not read this book looking for queer rep. There are two barely there relationships in the book. The main female protag has a crush on a young man she has known since they were kids, and there are two female secondary characters that catch feels. Both relationships are so light that I wouldn’t even put the romance tag on this book. There is nothing more than a kiss and even the violence is light for a Robin Hood type book. While my opinion is coming from someone that doesn’t have kids, I think this book could easily be in a school library and maybe even a junior high one. One thing I really liked about the book was some twists with the more familiar tale mixed into it. I liked that Rahma “Robin”, her sister, and some other characters were Muslim. I also liked that the book took place in the middle of the Third Crusade, instead of towards the end like in the origin tale. The mix of some real history, origin story, and new adventures really all meshed well and made the bones of a good story. At times I enjoyed picking out pieces that matched to the original, yet I enjoyed reading a story the still felt new. I think this is where Safi excelled in writing this book. While I liked a lot of the story I did have some issues. The writing style takes a little while to get used to. While I’m one of the bigger first person fans you will meet, I don’t enjoy when a character talks to us readers. I don’t like when they say things like “oh I forgot to explain what this is to you”. Well then just explain it, don’t have your character tell me that you need to explain it. I just think it’s a gimmick that rarely works so I don’t believe it’s worth taking the risk. Overall, it took a little while to get used to the writing style. The first third especially was pretty bumpy to me but once I was past that point things seemed less gimmicky and my enjoyment and reading experience improved. I also had some issues with how easily things happened. I don’t want to get into any spoilers but everything really comes together for the characters and I didn’t feel like they were in enough peril or that danger was around every corner like I wanted it to be. Part of me not feeling this might have been due to the fact that the characters were a little flat. While I liked them and thought they all worked in the story, they were pretty one dimensional. You had the charitable character, the angry character, the scientist, the spy, everyone was very one note and there just wasn’t a lot of meat there. This book is much more plot driven than character driven. I normally don’t like that and prefer the opposite or to have it even, but in this case because I liked the characters, I was able to go along for the ride and not really mind that there wasn’t much depth to them. TLDR: A fun Robin Hood retelling. I enjoyed this read but it did have its issues. I would recommend it more to plot driven readers because while the characters are nice, they are very one note. This doesn’t really have a romance, or explicit violence (that I can remember), so it should be a book for a wide range of ages. The writing does take a bit to get used to but the book gets better after the first third or so. This wasn’t the retelling I was looking for, but I still had fun with it and I’m glad I read it. A copy was given to me for a review.

  2. 5 out of 5

    laurel [the suspected bibliophile]

    A super fun retelling of Robin Hood set during the Third Crusade! This book has everything. Capers! Shenanigans! Greek fire! Do-Goodery Thievery! Drunk Templars! Irate Whyte Women! Queer rep! Get Help! Seals on seals on seals! Full RTC (lolololololololololol) I received this ARC from NetGalley for an honest review

  3. 4 out of 5

    khushi

    Why does this have a one star when the book hasn't even come out?? Why is this happening for so many of the remixed classics??? If the original books are supposedly universal, then the story written in historically (and currently!) underpublished and underwritten perspectives will only add to possible understandings of the tales! After all, the historical circumstances of these "classics" have multiplicity and complexity. Bringing that to light would be rather nice. Also giving this a 5-star rat Why does this have a one star when the book hasn't even come out?? Why is this happening for so many of the remixed classics??? If the original books are supposedly universal, then the story written in historically (and currently!) underpublished and underwritten perspectives will only add to possible understandings of the tales! After all, the historical circumstances of these "classics" have multiplicity and complexity. Bringing that to light would be rather nice. Also giving this a 5-star rating because, frankly, I really don't like seeing a 1-star rating for a remixed classic with a Muslim MC. (But also - why 1-star a book that you haven't even read jeez! Just be kind!) I am very excited!!!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Bethany

    DNF at 30% I really like this concept, but I just could not get on with the writing. Remixing Robin Hood to follow (mostly) Muslim women during the crusades is a great idea, and the book is clearly well researched. However, this is the author's first time writing something other than contemporary fiction and it shows. (For the record I adored Tell Me How You Really Feel!) Stylistically this veers wildly between trying for a faux historical vibe and a far too modern one. There's even a moment wher DNF at 30% I really like this concept, but I just could not get on with the writing. Remixing Robin Hood to follow (mostly) Muslim women during the crusades is a great idea, and the book is clearly well researched. However, this is the author's first time writing something other than contemporary fiction and it shows. (For the record I adored Tell Me How You Really Feel!) Stylistically this veers wildly between trying for a faux historical vibe and a far too modern one. There's even a moment where the MC tells the reader: oh yeah, I forgot to describe this thing to you and I've been using the Arabic word so let me correct that. I'm not even kidding, it's actually directed at the reader this way. It's unfortunately kind of cringey. And while the ideas are good, I found the way the story was being told to be kind of dull to read and it made odd choices about how to introduce characters and progress the plot. I'm not sure Safi was the best choice for this book. She can write a great contemporary, but that is a very different skill set than writing compelling historical fiction. I've really enjoyed the other installments in this remixed classics series, but sadly this was a miss for me. I received an advance copy of this book for review via NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jodi Meadows

    Excellent.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Andy

    I really enjoyed this one but for some reason I was under the impression the MC is sapphic when she's not?? Rep: Arab Muslim cishet female MC, sapphic Muslim cis female side character, Mongolian cis female side character, sapphic Jewish Andalusian cis female side character, white English cishet male side character, Arab Muslim cishet male side character, various Muslim, Christian, and Jewish side characters. CWs: War, colonisation, genocide, hate crime, racism, islamophobia, religious bigotry, c I really enjoyed this one but for some reason I was under the impression the MC is sapphic when she's not?? Rep: Arab Muslim cishet female MC, sapphic Muslim cis female side character, Mongolian cis female side character, sapphic Jewish Andalusian cis female side character, white English cishet male side character, Arab Muslim cishet male side character, various Muslim, Christian, and Jewish side characters. CWs: War, colonisation, genocide, hate crime, racism, islamophobia, religious bigotry, classism, violence. Moderate: Misogyny, sexism, death, xenophobia, antisemitism, medical content. Minor: confinement, torture, blood.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Tanaz

    Travelers Along the Way is the Robin Hood retelling I did not know I wanted. Deeply researched and masterfully written, here is a story that’s not only thrilling, but also delightfully clever! Rahma al-Hud and her band of merry misfits will appeal to history buffs and adventure seekers alike. A must read!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Ayushi (bookwormbullet)

    Thank you so much to Macmillan Children's Publishing Group for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review! This was a fun YA fantasy! I had been a fan of Aminah Mae Safi after reading and really enjoying her YA contemporary romance, Tell Me How You Really Feel, so I was really intrigued to read Travelers Along The Way after she announced that it would be a remix of Robin Hood following a rag-tag team of individuals on a heist. The representation was excellent and even as someone wh Thank you so much to Macmillan Children's Publishing Group for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review! This was a fun YA fantasy! I had been a fan of Aminah Mae Safi after reading and really enjoying her YA contemporary romance, Tell Me How You Really Feel, so I was really intrigued to read Travelers Along The Way after she announced that it would be a remix of Robin Hood following a rag-tag team of individuals on a heist. The representation was excellent and even as someone who finds world history to be boring at times, I really loved how rich the history was in this novel (the story takes place in Jerusalem during the Crusades)! It’s evident that a ton of research was done for the story’s worldbuilding and politics. The premise of the story itself was also pretty interesting and one of the first things that drew me into the novel as I read it. The worldbuilding isn’t delved into too deeply so it, alongside the politics, was pretty straightforward and easy to understand. I really loved how Aminah Mae Safi blended elements from real life cultures and religions seamlessly and accurately into the fantasy elements of her story. The other aspect of this story that really stood out to me are the characters. First, I loved following Rahma al-Hud as the “Green Hood” and the leader of her crew. She’s honestly so cool and cunning and I want to be her friend so bad. There needs to be more heist novels out there with female characters as the leader. Similarly, I loved how the villain of this story was also a woman, Queen Isabella, and how this story explored the dynamic between these two female leaders, each with their own political motives. I also adored the relationship between Rahma and Zeena. I don’t have a sister, but their dynamic was so much fun and reminded me so much of why I love grumpy x sunshine sibling and best friend dynamics. Aside from their comedic moments, I love how they both healed separately and eventually together from their past history as soldiers, and how it was evident that they would do anything to protect and support one another even with their differences. The other characters were such standouts too! I loved how funny Viva (especially Viva and Zeena’s adorable dynamic) and John were and how badass Teni is. I only wish that Majid and Rahma’s relationship was developed further. Throughout the book, they exchanged flirty banter and Rahma kept speaking of how she felt like she couldn’t breathe around him, but there was barely any concrete conclusion between them at the end of the novel, so I’m confused if I was reading into things between them. Overall, I recommend this book for fans of We Hunt the Flame, The City of Brass, and of course Robin Hood! Follow me on TikTok | Instagram | Twitter for more book reviews & recommendations!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Ashley Marie

    I'm a sucker for Robin Hood stories, and I'm especially a sucker for this retelling series. Setting Robin Hood during the Third Crusade? Such a fantastic idea. The main group of characters are all wonderful. I could've done without the tossing of POVs, although I did appreciate the juxtaposition of Rahma and Isabella. Another editing pass would have done well, but regardless, this was a lot of fun. I'm a sucker for Robin Hood stories, and I'm especially a sucker for this retelling series. Setting Robin Hood during the Third Crusade? Such a fantastic idea. The main group of characters are all wonderful. I could've done without the tossing of POVs, although I did appreciate the juxtaposition of Rahma and Isabella. Another editing pass would have done well, but regardless, this was a lot of fun.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ellie

    So boring! Nothing extra interesting really happened. There also many spelling mistakes. In was spelled inn but that may have been a play on words. Still it seemed kind of silly to me. Guest was spelled gest. Really, I expected more from this book.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Shijia

    OH MY

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sahitya

    As I keep reiterating all the time on the blog, I didn’t grow up on classics so while I know the basic premise of Robin Hood, I’ve never actually read the book nor watched any adaptations. In a similar vein, I bought a book about the Crusades years ago but like many others, I never managed to read much of it. So when I saw this classic and history colliding in this remix version, I knew I would enjoy this book and I’m glad that I did. I preordered this audiobook because I had a feeling it would As I keep reiterating all the time on the blog, I didn’t grow up on classics so while I know the basic premise of Robin Hood, I’ve never actually read the book nor watched any adaptations. In a similar vein, I bought a book about the Crusades years ago but like many others, I never managed to read much of it. So when I saw this classic and history colliding in this remix version, I knew I would enjoy this book and I’m glad that I did. I preordered this audiobook because I had a feeling it would be cool and it really was such an easy one to get through. The narrator Shiromi Arserio kept me engaged with her beautiful voice right from the get go and I didn’t take much breaks while listening. It also helps that this is a quick read, throughly entertaining, and with a motley group of characters who are easy to like. Even though the storyline is set during the Crusades, in the middle of the war between multiple countries, factions and religions, and Jerusalem stands as a prize to be snatched, we mostly only get a sense of adventure here and other than a couple dark and emotional scenes, we don’t see the gruesome effects of this war first hand. Similarly, our characters are traversing through multiple sieges and armies and while the stakes seem too high and dangerous, after the first couple of times, I was sure that nothing would happen to any of them. Then it was time to just enjoy their adventure. We only get one POV, that is Rahma and she is a fun one to be in the head of. She landed up so far away from home because she couldn’t let her elder sister go alone to war. Her heart may not be in fighting for a cause like religion and the Holy Land but she is a scrappy survivor and resourceful enough to get herself out of tricky situations and protect her sister by coming up with one harebrained scheme after another. But she also has this kind and compassionate side to her and even though she doesn’t have a cause like all the others fighting in the war, she makes it her choice to fight for all the normal people who are suffering due to the warmongering of their rulers. Her path to becoming an accidental Robin Hood-esque figure is both endearing and fun and I loved her maneuvering everyone into doing what she wanted. And there’s the accidental crew or found family she gathers around her who are very different from each other but also fit together so perfectly. First there’s Rahma’s sister Zeena who has deep conviction that she needs to fight for the Holy Land and is full of anger. Both of them are bickering almost every single moment and while it took me a while to get to used to, their love for each other is immense. They are first joined by Teni, a warrior from beyond the steppes, who isn’t ready to go back home yet and joins them to maybe find her own adventure. Then comes Viva who is young Jewish alchemist who doesn’t really have a home because of how all the invaders have destroyed her people. And then the group is rounded off by John, who is a disillusioned chaplain with the Knights Templar and also a healer, who probably just wants a new purpose in life without the violence. They are also joined sometimes by Majid, a mysterious spy and Rahma’s childhood friend who might be more than that. Teni’s bravery, Viva’s honesty, John’s quick thinking and Majid’s convincing skills all combine with Rahma’s scheming to give us a whole lot of adventures along their journey. I also loved how the author managed to get together a crew belonging to all the faiths who have stake in the Holy Land and despite what the wars the rulers representing these faiths are fighting, the author managed to convey beautifully that the common people could get along well if they wanted to because ultimately they were suffering equally. It was also interesting to see the other side of this, getting small glimpses into what Richard the Lionheart, Sultan Saladin and Queen Isabella of Jerusalem. In conclusion, this one felt like a classic adventure tale that captured the spirit of Robin Hood while giving us a very interesting setting like the cities around Jerusalem during the Crusades in the late 12th century. While I can’t say how close or different it is from the original, I thoroughly enjoyed this one. And even though things felt like they came too easy for our heroine, it was still a fun journey to be on with a cool group of characters. This remixed classics series is turning out to be such a unique experience and I can’t wait to next get my hands on the new versions of Wuthering Heights and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Adrian

    Just a fast fun read. Lots of adventure, chaste (longing glances, one kiss) romances with a few of the crew. Predominantly female-led cast. Tricks and schemes galore.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Musings on Living

    A fun, fast paced story that you will speed right through! While I thought it was a YA fantasy, there is only a slight use of alchemy - things get blown up, which was great but I would have loved more. But that definitely did not detract me from enjoying such a witty story, this is the Muslim gender switching Robin Hood retelling that I didn't know I needed. IG: @musingsonliving A fun, fast paced story that you will speed right through! While I thought it was a YA fantasy, there is only a slight use of alchemy - things get blown up, which was great but I would have loved more. But that definitely did not detract me from enjoying such a witty story, this is the Muslim gender switching Robin Hood retelling that I didn't know I needed. IG: @musingsonliving

  15. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    4.5 stars. I saw this author in a couple of panels at the North Texas Teen Book Festival and got excited about this book so had to read it right away. The author said that what she most wanted to write was just a really fun book, and she definitely accomplished that. I really enjoyed the characters and I love the found family trope so this book was right up my alley. The book doesn't waste time in the beginning and jumps straight into the action, with the merry band getting together quite quickly 4.5 stars. I saw this author in a couple of panels at the North Texas Teen Book Festival and got excited about this book so had to read it right away. The author said that what she most wanted to write was just a really fun book, and she definitely accomplished that. I really enjoyed the characters and I love the found family trope so this book was right up my alley. The book doesn't waste time in the beginning and jumps straight into the action, with the merry band getting together quite quickly. Although in some ways the plot felt a little weak (what exactly were they trying to accomplish, especially at first?), there was never a dull moment. And the characters, especially the main one (Rahma) developed along the way, discovering who she was independent of her sister. Technically this book is historical fiction, but if you're hardcore into historical fiction and need your fiction to be completely historically accurate, this book may not be for you. There are some anachronisms in speech and it has a fairly modern sensibility. But honestly, you shouldn't go into this book looking for super accurate historical fiction (although the author clearly did her research) because that's not the intention behind this book. So if you want just a fun read, a bit of a heist found family type of book, give this one a try.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for providing this eARC in exchange for an honest review. Travelers Along the Way reimagines the classic story of Robin Hood. We follow, instead, Rahma al-Hud, who followed her sister Zeena to war during the Third Crusade in Jerusalem. I absolutely adored this installment in the Remixed Classics series from MacMillan. As with prior installments, Travelers Along the Way breathes new life into a story we all know and love. The world is rich and well-researche Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for providing this eARC in exchange for an honest review. Travelers Along the Way reimagines the classic story of Robin Hood. We follow, instead, Rahma al-Hud, who followed her sister Zeena to war during the Third Crusade in Jerusalem. I absolutely adored this installment in the Remixed Classics series from MacMillan. As with prior installments, Travelers Along the Way breathes new life into a story we all know and love. The world is rich and well-researched, the characters are beautifully diverse, and the story itself holds true to the spirit of the original. Rahma was such a fun character to follow; she is clever and confident and kind, and has a hilarious flair for just the right amount of drama. She is a hero girls can look up to, and as an added bonus, even within her own story, she actively subverts the preconceived idea of who and what a hero really is. I am beyond excited for this book to make it into the hands of readers who may not have liked classics before, as this novel has the perfect blend of a culturally conscious and diverse lens and the spirit and adventure of the original classic.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Anniek

    On the one hand, I had a lot of fun reading this, but on the other hand, I came away from it feeling conflicted. I do want more historical YA though, especially set during medieval times! I unfortunately found it pretty hard to follow along with the plot and determining what the plot even was. There was a lot of moving around, a lot of action, but not a clear goal or a thread that seemed to be followed. I did enjoy seeing the cast of characters grow as they moved around! What saved this book for m On the one hand, I had a lot of fun reading this, but on the other hand, I came away from it feeling conflicted. I do want more historical YA though, especially set during medieval times! I unfortunately found it pretty hard to follow along with the plot and determining what the plot even was. There was a lot of moving around, a lot of action, but not a clear goal or a thread that seemed to be followed. I did enjoy seeing the cast of characters grow as they moved around! What saved this book for me though, was the writing style. I expect some people will dislike this, as the writing style, which is modern, lighthearted and humorous, sort of clashes with the content matter of a historical adventure novel. But this really worked for me, and it made for a really fun reading experience. The chapter headers were especially funny!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Fabienne Schwizer

    Travelers Along the Way by Aminah Mae Safi is exactly the kind of retelling I adore. It reworks the well-known story of Robin Hood, that legendary outlaw active in Sherwood Forest outside of Nottingham during the last decade of the twelfth century, stealing from the rich to support the poor while Richard Lionheart, the King of England at the time, was off on Crusade in the Holy Land. In the traditional story, the main antagonists are John, Richard’s younger brother, who rules England in his stea Travelers Along the Way by Aminah Mae Safi is exactly the kind of retelling I adore. It reworks the well-known story of Robin Hood, that legendary outlaw active in Sherwood Forest outside of Nottingham during the last decade of the twelfth century, stealing from the rich to support the poor while Richard Lionheart, the King of England at the time, was off on Crusade in the Holy Land. In the traditional story, the main antagonists are John, Richard’s younger brother, who rules England in his stead, and the Sheriff of Nottingham, who is Robin’s immediate nemesis. The story centres around the unfair treatment of peasants by the gentry, the cost of war – not just in terms of men, but also taxes – and the futility of trying to stand up against the powers that be in a society that thrives off status. It is also the original heist story, featuring a motley crew of outcasts banding together to fight against the status quo, trying to pull off the impossible. And as such, it has been one of the most popular tales to survive through the ages. Travelers Along The Way is probably the best take on the source material I have read. It takes all of the important themes of the original story and reworks them into a unique and modern novel, set in the same period, but transported to the Holy Land. Safi has her Green Hood–the Robin Hood equivalent–be a young girl, visually perceived as a man due to her height when disguised by the green hooded cloak, a muslim caught up in the events of the Third Crusade. Similar to the original story of Robin Hood, the protagonists of this story did not set out to be heroes–or thieves for that matter–but ended up sliding into it trying to survive, trying to make the best of the situation that they found themselves in, trying to help the people they encounter on their way. And thus, their band of misfits grows, and with it their reputation (or infamy, depending on who you ask). While the original story focuses on society being unhappy with John’s overlordship of England in his brother’s stead, Travelers Along the Way has Isabella–a foreign queen desperate to hang on to power in the Holy Land through any manner necessary. We do see part of the story told through her eyes, but while the reader becomes sympathetic to her plight, she never becomes a likeable character. The reader also encounters more well-known historical characters such as Richard Lionheart or Saladin, though it is not exactly a historical novel. It is wonderful to see this traditional story transported to this more diverse setting. As part of the band of the Green Hood, we see members of the major religions working together and crossing those boundaries that were ostensibly at the centre of the conflicts. There is a sweet sapphic relationship and the story is full of fantastic characters in general, none of which fall flat. I should mention that this is part of Feiwel and Friends’ Remixed Classics series, where different authors of colour each take a classic story and rework it–all of the ones I’ve had the chance to read so far have been great!

  19. 5 out of 5

    On the Same Page

    ARC provided by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I was excited as soon as I heard about this book. A genderbent retelling of Robin Hood, set in Palestine, during the crusades, with Muslim main characters? Yes to all of that. And then it got a gorgeous cover to boot. This is a fun and fast read overall, but I did have some issues with the execution. The writing feels very modern for historical fiction. It didn't bother me personally, but I do think it's something ARC provided by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I was excited as soon as I heard about this book. A genderbent retelling of Robin Hood, set in Palestine, during the crusades, with Muslim main characters? Yes to all of that. And then it got a gorgeous cover to boot. This is a fun and fast read overall, but I did have some issues with the execution. The writing feels very modern for historical fiction. It didn't bother me personally, but I do think it's something to know going in. The author frequently breaks the 4th wall and has her main character address the reader directly; for example, the main character is narrating what happened, followed by something like "you may be wondering why I'm telling you this but don't worry, it will all make sense later on". The plot meanders and lacks any clear direction until well into the second half. The way the merry band got together also felt clunky at times, with the characters just appearing on our protagonist's path one after the other, without anything else happening in between. Despite all of this, I loved following Rahma as a main character. She's fierce, protective, and compassionate, but also impulsive and has a snarky sense of humor. Her strong moral compass was evident throughout the story, and she didn't deviate from it even when many in her group tried to argue against her plans. In short, she was just a really fun heroine. However, the rest of the characters felt flat in comparison, and I didn't feel like any of them got to develop into well-rounded characters. Zeena is the angry one, Viva is the scientist, John is the healer, etc. As always with any book featuring Muslim characters, I was most worried about the representation, but the author took a lot of care to make sure that Rahma is clearly, unabashedly Muslim. From using the casual phrases most Muslims will use on a daily basis (elhamdulillah, mashallah, etc), references to stories from the life of the Prophet Mohammed, to even tackling the thorny issue of discrimination amongst Muslims when it comes to different sects (Sunni vs Shia). I was never once left wondering if Rahma was actually Muslim, because she constantly showed me she was.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Karinas.lit

    Travelers Along the Way Review First of all, I would love to thank Macmillan, FierceReads, and Amina Mae Safi for giving me an eARC of Travelers Along the Way in exchange for an honest review! With world building so detailed you’ll feel like you were transported back into 1192. Perfect for fans of the political aspect of The Cruel Prince, this historical ya fantasy is a 2022 must read. Overall Review: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 Plot: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 The plot wasn’t very direct or clear, but I couldn’t stop reading Travelers Along the Way Review First of all, I would love to thank Macmillan, FierceReads, and Amina Mae Safi for giving me an eARC of Travelers Along the Way in exchange for an honest review! With world building so detailed you’ll feel like you were transported back into 1192. Perfect for fans of the political aspect of The Cruel Prince, this historical ya fantasy is a 2022 must read. Overall Review: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 Plot: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 The plot wasn’t very direct or clear, but I couldn’t stop reading the book Characters: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 You can clearly see the thought and effort put into making each character unique, and I am obsessed with EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. Rhema: miss ma’am is an actual bada$$. Criminal mastermind genius Zeena: I love her and her grumpiness Viva: LOVE LOVE LOVE Teni: multi-talented queen Majid: sir is charming as heck John: awww angel babycakes World Building: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 The world building was amazing! While reading this book I felt like I went back into time. It also helped educate me on what happened in this area during this time period. Romance:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 Romance was definitely not the main focus of the story, which I was a bit disappointed by. I would’ve liked to see a little more of the relationships of the couples, but the glimpses I did see were beautiful! Writing Style: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 I have no idea what it was, but the writing kept me sucked into the world the whole time. This historical fantasy was beautifully and intricately written. It got me out of a giant reading slump, and is one of the best books I’ve read!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Karis Rogerson

    (Thank you to the publisher via Netgalley for an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.) 5/5 stars This book is absolutely stunning. Aminah Mae Safi did THAT and absolutely killed this book. Like it's one of the best books I've read in a year of incredible books! The characters - Rahma al-Hud is the perfect Robin Hood remix protagonist. She's cheeky, confident, skilled, and has the biggest heart. Willing to give away anything to help those in need and do anything to protect the ones s (Thank you to the publisher via Netgalley for an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.) 5/5 stars This book is absolutely stunning. Aminah Mae Safi did THAT and absolutely killed this book. Like it's one of the best books I've read in a year of incredible books! The characters - Rahma al-Hud is the perfect Robin Hood remix protagonist. She's cheeky, confident, skilled, and has the biggest heart. Willing to give away anything to help those in need and do anything to protect the ones she loves. She's got it all. The rest of her merry band of travelers are also incredible - they all clearly serve a narrative purpose but are also well-crafted characters with sparkling personalities of their own. I loved the story, like the plot arc? Utterly brilliant. The way it was set up so the final twist was bigger than all the other heists and cons, and also believable because of the setup -- excellent. I'm amazed, I want to write a book with as tightly-plotted & well-thought out an arc as this someday. This is the genderbent retelling of Robin Hood that you *need*. With diversity of religion, background, sexuality, and personality, the cast of characters is vibrant and alive and the story sings along from page to page. All in all I had a rollicking good time with this book. My one complaint is that I want a sequel but that's not a complaint, that's a compliment.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Monica

    Initial Thoughts This book wasn’t on my radar until I received the NetGalley widget from the publisher - but, it sounded really good so I was eager to give it a read. Some Things I Liked Those glorious chapter titles. They were so perfect and my music loving self appreciated every single one. Gender bent retelling in a fresh setting. This wasn’t a standard retelling. It was so much more than that and I loved it for that. We got the classic Robin Hood characters but we also got a lot more. I love Initial Thoughts This book wasn’t on my radar until I received the NetGalley widget from the publisher - but, it sounded really good so I was eager to give it a read. Some Things I Liked Those glorious chapter titles. They were so perfect and my music loving self appreciated every single one. Gender bent retelling in a fresh setting. This wasn’t a standard retelling. It was so much more than that and I loved it for that. We got the classic Robin Hood characters but we also got a lot more. I loved the found family vibes and I loved that the story was moved out of the traditional setting and into a time and place that I really don’t know much about. The romance. I loved the romance plots, especially Zeena’s story. Plot twists. As I’d expect with a story of outlaws and thieves, there were twists a plenty in this book and I loved them. This story kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time. Series Value I’d absolutely adore more books about this crew but this story feels complete. However, I’d like to read more by this author and I’d like to read the rest of the Remixed Classics series! Final Thoughts I wasn’t expecting to love this book as much as I do. This was a really pleasant surprise and I hope to see more people talking about this one soon!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lena

    To be honest, I didn't have any expectations when it came to this book. And I was pleasantly surprised! I had so much fun reading about Rahma al-Hud and her band of merry misfits. These random people from different backgrounds were just out and about stealing from the queen of Jerusalem and saving people in the Holy Land. This isn't a book to take very seriously–the writing is way too modern for historical fiction and it's quite unlikely that 3 Muslim Middle Eastern teens, a Mongolian, a Christian To be honest, I didn't have any expectations when it came to this book. And I was pleasantly surprised! I had so much fun reading about Rahma al-Hud and her band of merry misfits. These random people from different backgrounds were just out and about stealing from the queen of Jerusalem and saving people in the Holy Land. This isn't a book to take very seriously–the writing is way too modern for historical fiction and it's quite unlikely that 3 Muslim Middle Eastern teens, a Mongolian, a Christian English boy and a Jewish Andalusian would just hang out with each other, become a found family and trick the invading rulers during a crusade. So I see this more as a historically inspired fantasy. The characters were great and each special in their own way! I was rooting so much for the sapphic romance between the MCs sister and another traveller ♥♥♥ I always love it when novels include sibling dynamics, even though these sisters really didn't have the best relationship. Rahma's 'romance' romance could've been better–feelings were mentioned and the characters flirted but it never led to anything which was a little unsatisfying.

  24. 5 out of 5

    space queen of narnia

    hi hello this sounds SO GOOD I love the idea of these authors taking fairytales/folktales everyone knows and loves and turning them into something to represent the author's culture. Just such a wonderful idea. I can't wait to pick this one up!! hi hello this sounds SO GOOD I love the idea of these authors taking fairytales/folktales everyone knows and loves and turning them into something to represent the author's culture. Just such a wonderful idea. I can't wait to pick this one up!!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Advanced Reader’s Copy provided by NetGalley, Macmillan Children's Publishing Group, and Feiwel & Friends in exchange for an honest review. I would follow Rahma al-Hud wherever she wants to go, because I know it'll be an awfully big adventure. Rahma and her band of merry friends are dynamic and interesting. Each is flawed and their dynamic is what makes found families so amazing. Safi takes the heart of what makes Robin Hood so timeless and reimagines it through the eyes of a teen muslim girl. Whi Advanced Reader’s Copy provided by NetGalley, Macmillan Children's Publishing Group, and Feiwel & Friends in exchange for an honest review. I would follow Rahma al-Hud wherever she wants to go, because I know it'll be an awfully big adventure. Rahma and her band of merry friends are dynamic and interesting. Each is flawed and their dynamic is what makes found families so amazing. Safi takes the heart of what makes Robin Hood so timeless and reimagines it through the eyes of a teen muslim girl. While the crusade plot line is a little hard to follow unless you know the historical context, the overall plot was such a fun read! TRAVELERS ALONG THE WAY is a hard novel to put down and I'd love more novels with Rahma and her band of misfits.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Alli

    When I first started this, I wasn't quite sure how I was going to feel about it. My knowledge of the Third Crusade is small at best, and while I know the story of Robin Hood, it's not one of my favorites. So I was pleasantly surprised when this ended up being an exciting story I fell in love with. The story is told from the perspective of Rahma al-Hud, a narrator with a voice that reminded me of Flynn Rider from Tangled, or Kuzco from The Emporer's New Groove - that dry, sarcastic, humor that alw When I first started this, I wasn't quite sure how I was going to feel about it. My knowledge of the Third Crusade is small at best, and while I know the story of Robin Hood, it's not one of my favorites. So I was pleasantly surprised when this ended up being an exciting story I fell in love with. The story is told from the perspective of Rahma al-Hud, a narrator with a voice that reminded me of Flynn Rider from Tangled, or Kuzco from The Emporer's New Groove - that dry, sarcastic, humor that always makes me chuckle. It was so fun to get to be inside her head, and I would've loved to have gotten to spend a few more pages there. Every handful of chapters there's also a chapter from a historical figure (think Queen Isabella and King Richard), which helped to provide historical context. I also really enjoyed the side characters and their relationships with Rahma and each other. They all felt fully fleshed out, which is great to see since it isn't always the case in stories. The plot never had a dull moment, and the action and tricks never let me figure out what was coming next. And maybe this is silly, but I loved reading a book with actual chapter titles (especially since they were mainly puns or references). Overall, I enjoyed this much more than I anticipated, and highly recommend it! I received an advance copy from NetGalley and Macmillan, all opinions are my own.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Grant

    A fast-paced and extremely diverse retelling of Robin Hood set during the Crusades. An inclusive cast led by a cunning and kind female "robin" named Rahma al-Hud are thrust onto a dangerous landscape, but get themselves into plenty of sticky situations themselves. A handful of simple but effective heists truly dive into the Robin Hood drama of it all, but with a very new and fresh lens. Safi pays attention to the details and pays respect to all the religions that call the region home while point A fast-paced and extremely diverse retelling of Robin Hood set during the Crusades. An inclusive cast led by a cunning and kind female "robin" named Rahma al-Hud are thrust onto a dangerous landscape, but get themselves into plenty of sticky situations themselves. A handful of simple but effective heists truly dive into the Robin Hood drama of it all, but with a very new and fresh lens. Safi pays attention to the details and pays respect to all the religions that call the region home while pointing out the real enemy being human greed and lust for power. If you like quick, historical fiction with inclusive representation and a strong sense of place: read this book!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Elevetha

    *DNF at 102 pages* Simply not doing anything for me by 100 pages in. I liked the sister element and the lack of romance so far but they definitely weren't enough to keep me interested. The plot was I think a bit too complex to just dive into without really giving us any background or an explanation/definition at the beginning of the book for who the main players as far as race/nationality were as the names they are referred to throughout the book isn't likely the names the average person has ever *DNF at 102 pages* Simply not doing anything for me by 100 pages in. I liked the sister element and the lack of romance so far but they definitely weren't enough to keep me interested. The plot was I think a bit too complex to just dive into without really giving us any background or an explanation/definition at the beginning of the book for who the main players as far as race/nationality were as the names they are referred to throughout the book isn't likely the names the average person has ever heard them referred to as before.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lauren Khoury

    Travelers Along the Way is the Muslim, gender-swapped Robin Hood remix that we all needed. It transplants all of your beloved characters and their iconic escapades into the Third Crusade, pitting them instead against Richard the Lionheart and his opponents as they vie for control of the City of Jerusalem. Rahma al-Hud and her merry band are still the fantastically clever thieves we all love and the fair maid Marian is replaced with the dashing Majid. The story is action-packed, funny, and deeply Travelers Along the Way is the Muslim, gender-swapped Robin Hood remix that we all needed. It transplants all of your beloved characters and their iconic escapades into the Third Crusade, pitting them instead against Richard the Lionheart and his opponents as they vie for control of the City of Jerusalem. Rahma al-Hud and her merry band are still the fantastically clever thieves we all love and the fair maid Marian is replaced with the dashing Majid. The story is action-packed, funny, and deeply human despite its brutal backdrop. The characters, heroes and villains alike, were masterfully crafted, and I thoroughly enjoyed the POV dips into the minds of the opposing rulers. Travelers Along the Way does a fantastic job of preserving the unique facets of each character throughout the length of the story. I've been finding that characters can sometimes lose their unique traits during the climax of the adventure, everyone so focused on their goal that they become robotic. But these characters felt so human and so real. I loved constantly rolling my eyes at Zeena and cackling at Viva being predictably unpredictable. Thank you to Macmillan and Amina Mae Safi for giving me an eARC of Travelers Along the Way in exchange for an honest review.

  30. 5 out of 5

    USOM

    (Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) If you're a fan of sister shennanigans, found family (with some seriously sweet moments), and tons of sneaking you have to read this one. The sister relationship is an element I immediately loved and still one of my favorite elements. And they're not just sisters, but also sisters who are hatching plans and adventuring together! The found family trope is done so perfectly here. Tr (Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) If you're a fan of sister shennanigans, found family (with some seriously sweet moments), and tons of sneaking you have to read this one. The sister relationship is an element I immediately loved and still one of my favorite elements. And they're not just sisters, but also sisters who are hatching plans and adventuring together! The found family trope is done so perfectly here. Travelers Along the Way is rich in historical elements carefully balanced with sabotage, thievery, and betrayals. full review: https://utopia-state-of-mind.com/revi...

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