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5.0 out of 5 starsIf you like military history, you will like Richard Sharpe
Reviewed in the United States on July 1, 2018
I am fascinated by the character of Sharpe. I keep returning to his exploits, like catching up with an old friend. What has he done since the last time I saw him? Cornwell writes so well, whether it is the Riflemen of the British army during the Napoleonic wars, or the US Civil War, or the 8th century when the Danes almost took over Britain. The people who participate in these events are real, with emotional and psychological lives outside of the historical events taking place around them. Even though some of his books have many characters, Cormwell invests them all with memorable personalities and character traits. The battles are described with fine detail, but no gratuitous violence. The amazing new weapons of their times are described in detail, whether they are cannons or longbows. At the end of the day, I keep reading because I like Sharpe. Were he my contemporary he could be either my business partner or my lover. I would trust him.
5.0 out of 5 starsAnother masterful tale by Bernard Cornwell - I highly recommend it
Reviewed in the United States on March 12, 2016
As usual, Cornwell applies great writing and superior story telling woven into a fantastic tapestry of fiction and history. I'm a Cornwell fan and I love the Sharpe series in it's written form. I watched the TV series long ago and thought it was very good until I decided to read the books. The books are far and away superior to the TV series in depth, description, detail and content. I wouldn't say you should ignore the TV series but whatever you do, read the books. This is another interesting tale of the adventures of Sharpe and Harper, yes beyond belief in the realm of reality but Cornwell suspends my disbelief in his storytelling and as is always the case makes sure every victory, every win, every positive moment comes with a high personal price that leaves readers concerned for the wellbeing of the fictional characters within. What's a good hero without a villainous equal who in Sharpe's case must finally be beaten with brute force and tactical cunning. This book is filled with action both on and off the battlefield and pits Sharpe against domestic enemies. As I said, Cornwell doesn't give anything away to a character for free so even though the battle may be won, the cost may be more than a reasonable person would accept. This book may have some wins that have matching disappointment or tragedies. I highly recommend the book and suggest you should start at the beginning with Sharpe's Tiger and read straight through to the last book. Each book is hours of inexpensive entertainment.
5.0 out of 5 starsThis 18th Richard Sharpe adventure has Sharpe exposing the illegal practice of recruiting and selling soldiers for profit (1813)
Reviewed in the United States on March 10, 2016
The 18th Richard Sharpe adventure. Sharpe returns to London to find out why his supply of replacements has dried up. He discovers that his missing regiment does indeed exist, but the recruits are being auctioned to other battalions. He also discovers that his enemy Sir Henry Simmerson, the cowardly colonel whose inept leadership killed many English soldiers, is involved in the practice of crimping. This is the illegal recruiting and selling of soldiers for profit. In order to expose Simmerson and the dangerous Lord Fenner, Sharpe and Harper must go undercover as new recruits in this missing battalion, which is hidden in a secret location called the Foulness, an area surrounded by dangerous swamps. Sharpe is aided by Sir Henry's niece, the lovely Jane Gibbons, to whom Sharpe proposes marriage. Together they must search for written evidence which will convict Simmerson and Fenner. Sharpe returns with his missing regiment to France and to storm a heavily defended hill with his green recruits. A wonderful, well-written, and engaging story.
Four stars. Not for the writing, but for the professional narration. I had to speed it up otherwise it lost the rich drama of the story and all of the women's voices sounded a like.
I have actually read all of the books and more than twice. This is my first go round with professional narration. I am not reading them in order this time because I know these stories so well that I could probably narrate them verbatim.
I recommend these books to any one interested in the story of the Peninsula Battles of the Napoleonic Wars. I am told that I am too blood thirsty for a female but I see this as and era of justified wars but with the venal avarice of those who ran the war from the rear. In so many cases the leadership was so bad that tis a wonder the Allies prevailed at all.
Officer ranks filled with son's of the rich with nothing other than privilege and their snobbery to serve them. I look forward to reading from the French prospective. Recommendations please.
Love the Richard Sharpe series of books. Got hooked on these books after seeing the tv series and movies on PBS. Great plots, action, romance and characters. Give this book and all the other Sharpe novels a 5 star rating. Everyone should read these books.
Reviewed in the United States on February 14, 2018
This book a a real bast to read. In an effort to include a lot of actual history (even for BC), the author takes you down a path that has some rather absurd elements. It is the history itself that creates these moments. A delight to read, this book sets the stage for Sharpe and Harper to fight Napoleon on his own soil.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 12, 2020
I decided to buy and read all the Sharpe Books and read them in one go. After a while you get to know an author's style and their writing becomes predictable as well as the general plots. There is some of that with Sharpe mainly because it's based on historical events that tended to be enacted in the same way during that period. But, these are very well written books, good research carried out beforehand and full of little snippets of historical information such as how much pay a private had or the price of a commission in the British army or the quality of food etc. Out of all the books I would Sharpe's Revenge is the weakest, Sharpe's Waterloo is the best and the last book in the series, Sharpe's Devil, is really a bit pointless and flat in comparison to the other books in the series.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 17, 2007
In virtually every novel in the Sharpe-series our hero's had to deal with as many enemies from within the British army (Hakeswill being the foremost off course) as from the French but in "Sharpe's Regiment" he has nothing but enemies from within.
At the start of the story Sharpe is in Spain eagerly awaiting the necessary reinforcements for the South Essex Regiment when, to his utter astonishment, he learns that none are coming and the Regiment is likely to be disbanded (a fate only slightly less worse than losing your Colours). When Sharpe travels to England to investigate he stumbles upon a conspiracy by some very high-ranking people, and (no Sharpe-novel's complete without one) a woman he hasn't seen in quite a while.
I found this one of the best Sharpe-novels I've read so far, if only because there's not only the usual action and battle scenes, but Sharpe in England instead of Spain (or India in the first novels) makes for a very welcome change of scenery. An utterly compelling read, as we've come to expect for Bernard Cornwell!
Bernard Cornwell is, in my opinion [for whatever that is worth] the best historical author currently working in the world of narrative fiction; based upon real-life historical events. He pulls no punches in respect to the often extremely violent reality of life during the wide ranging periods of human history he has covered. The net result is an authentic and often contemporary feel, featuring a cast of flawed characters that the modern day reader can identify with [in some cases], and entertained by until it becomes quite addictive.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 15, 2016
Another well written book. Richard Sharpe grows with each chapter. Historical dates are about right and the characters have their own adventures surrounding them. This is a book well worth reading and well worth recommending to friends and family alike.