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: Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson (1850-1894), a Scottish novelist, poet and essayist, was influential to the likes of Ernest Hemingway, Rudyard Kipling, and J. M. Barrie. His most famous works include "Treasure Island" and "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde". Originally intending to study engineering at the University of Edinburgh, Stevenson expended more energy dodging lectures than attending them. He shifted his studies to law, passing the bar but never actually practicing the profession. Instead he began to seek success through writing, beginning with travel novels, exploring Europe and weaving stories from his own experiences. "The Black Arrow" is a tale comparable to his most famous works, the plot swiftly carried by thrilling suspense and narrow escapes. Set during the Middle Ages, Stevenson depicts the harsh conditions of life at that time, as well as the horrors of civil war, dealing in particular with the fifteenth-century War of the Roses.