A guttersnipe who has risen through the ranks of the British army, Ensign Sharpe is sailing home to England from his latest campaign against Napoleon. Anticipating an uneventful voyage, the dashing young maverick discovers the intriguing and very married Lady Grace Hale on board the Calliope. But just as he wins his way into her heart, the ship is fired upon and, suddenly, he finds himself in the thick of one of history's most spectacular incidents: the Battle of Trafalgar.
Patrick Tull's vibrant narration bedazzles listeners with this breathtaking retelling of one of Europe's most ferocious sea battles.
©2002 Bernard Cornwell; (P)2002 Recorded Books
Sharpe finishes his campaign in India and heads home to Britain. If you like the Master and Commander Series by Patrick O'Brian and the Horatio Hornblower you'll enjoy this book being put into the mix. I appreciate that Cornwell explains some of the concepts of battle at sea and why they do things a particular way so land lubbers like me can understand.
The story is great, love the change where Sharp is on a sea voyage and sea battles, but the narration leaves something to be desired.
The recording as much as the narrator is just low quality. Voice goes from low to high and there is no happy medium. Turn up the volume and the volume hurts when the narrator raises the voice, turn it low and you cant hear the quiet parts.
I wish this book is re-recorded.
if Cornwell's goal was to bore us as much as the passengers on a four month cruise from India to Britain then I'd say this book was rather successful, but I seriously doubt that was his objective. In other books Sharpe is a dark hero but in this he is
nothing but an adulterous murderer, why?
The reading of this book was annoying at best. Why Mr. Tull wouldn't have read it in his own and then added character voices is beyond me. Instead he read it in a shrill voice that went up and down to where at times I could barely hear him and at others he nearly deafened me.
All and all, two stars is being generous
An avid book "listener". As I own my own dental lab,I make teeth sitting at a bench all day, I have plenty of time to enjoy Audible titles
Being a fan of Napoleonic war and that strange time in history with new military geniuses, swords, pikes, halberd, guns and cannon, how could one not appreciate the talents of Bernard Cornwell's "in the moment" take on, what would arguably be, the most brilliant and lopsided sea battle ever fought.
Sharpe's perspective on the approach to breaking the combined fleet's line.
Patrick Tull brings life to each of the character's that he performs and I truly appreciate his ability to let me know who is talking, just by the accents and inflections that he brings to each character.
If you like Patrick Tull's reading here, you should definitely listen to his reading of the O'brien Aubrey and Maturin series starting with Master and Commander.
The Battle of Trafalgar is the backdrop for one of Sharpe's most interesting adventures. In the midst of the runup to this pivitol battle, Sharpe is caught up in an affair with the wife of an aristocrat which threatens both their lives. Sharpe's experiences aboard ship also give the reader a graphic understanding of life in Nelson's navy and culminates with the bloody action off Trafalgar. Patrick Tull's narration is superb and brings the characters and events to life. If you follow the Sharpe series or just enjoy a gritty naval yarn, purchase this book.
Part 2 of this book is missing a large chunk at the beginning. I have compared this to my local public library's print book and book on tape. I believe that Audible needs to fix this as this seems to me simply a technical error and not an issue of "abridged" vs. "unabridged". This is a defective item pure and simple and subscribers should not be charged for a defective item.
Otherwise I agree that Patrick Tull is often difficult to understand as a narrator. I consider this one of the weaker Sharpe novels but they are all enjoyable nonetheless.
Tull uses the same voice - his own - for every character: Men, women, boys, Scotts, Indian, English. And takes no cue from the book as to how the voice should inflect: Scared, angry, happy, sad, quiet.
On the rare occasion that he does start out with the accent of the character, he doesn't hold the accent. And, most annoying of all, he'll go back and forth between his own voice and the character's and it sounds as if two people are speaking!
Instead of listening for pleasure I've been listening intently just to follow the story and often having to skip back.
Tull isn't the worst narrator I've heard, but he's certainly the most boring. The entire rich text is pure monotony. He does, indeed, make the world British.
How the publishers justify using idiots to narrate when so many fine men and women are mere phone calls away is mystifying.
Cornwell is brilliant. That's the only reason I'm continuing to listen and will listen to the next Sharpe book even though Tull narrates it, as well.
Davidson reads much too fast, but at least he has a voice for each person.
As usual, Cornwell weaves a compelling historical story that had me rooting for the good guys. It finishes satisfactorily, each baddie getting his in the end and the heroes overcoming against all odds.
Unfortunately the narration was done by a banjoist. Every character sounds like a hillbilly British Burl Ives. Rather than listen to any other Sharpe novels narrated by Tull, I just ordered the print versions. The Frederick Davidson narrations are excellent.
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