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Publisher's Summary

It is 1810, and in Napoleon's determination to conquer Portugal, and push the British back to the sea, he sends his largest army yet across the Spanish frontier. But between the Portuguese border and Napoleon's seemingly certain victory are two obstacles; a wasted land, stripped of food by Wellington's orders, and Captain Richard Sharpe.

But Sharpe is in trouble. The captain of the Light Company is threatened from inside and out: first by an incompetent British officer, who by virtue of family connections is temporarily given Sharpe's command. An even greater danger is posed by two corrupt Portuguese brothers, Major Ferreira, a high-ranking officer in the army of Portugal, and his brother, nicknamed "Ferragus" (after a legendary Portuguese giant), who prefer to rule by crude physical strength and pure intimidation. Together the brothers have developed a devious plot to ingratiate themselves with the French invaders who are threatening to become Portugal's new rulers.

Sharpe's interference in the first stage of their plan earns the undying enmity of the brothers. Ferragus vows revenge and plots a merciless trap that seems certain to kill Sharpe and his intimates. As the city of Coimbra is burned and pillaged, Sharpe and his companions plot a daring escape, ensuring that Ferragus will follow on toward Lisbon, into the jaws of a snare laid by Wellington that is meant to be a daring and ingenious last stand against the invaders. There, beneath the British guns, Sharpe is reunited with his shattered but grateful company, and meets his enemies in a thrilling and decisive fight.

Don't forget to check out the rest of Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe series.

Don't miss the rest of Bernard Cornwell's literary masterpieces.

©2004 Bernard Cornwell; (P)2004 HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Another thrilling adventure." (Booklist)
"With fully fleshed-out characters and keen human insight, Cornwell just keeps getting better." (Publishers Weekly)
"Adroitly capturing character, Patrick Tull sounds like a grizzled, gin-soaked foot soldier who saw it all firsthand and who enjoys nothing more than telling war stories." (AudioFile)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Jesse
  • Saanichton, BC, Canada
  • 04-03-07

Classic Cornwell, Terrible Tull

This is my first audiobook review after several years and hundreds of downloads. I have listened to a lot of books by a lot of readers but have to say that while I'm a HUGE fan of the Sharpe Novels I absolutely can NOT stand Tull as the reader. Like others have noted it sounds like he has his mouth full or a serious speaking disorder. It's both aggravating and distracting. Unlike every other book I find myself looking at the counter not dreading the end of the narrative but hoping for it! I've listened to books where the writer has pushed the bounds of credibility to the point where I roll my eyes, but this book makes me grind my teeth, not from the story but from the reader. For Sharpe fans I would recommend buying the paper back and skip this audiobook.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Please Bring Back Frederick Davidson!!

This being my first opportunity to hear Mr. Tull as a reader, in my opinion, Frederick Davidson is much superior for this particular series. Mr. Frederickson style denotes a sense of the true rogue, which is what Richard Sharpe's character is all about, while, Mr. Tull's style, while worthy; seems almost bland and unclear by comparison. Is he is eating a banana while reading? It seems so at times. I started then stopped listening to this book several times before I could finally bring myself to complete it. I would recommend any first time listeners of the Sharpes Series to listen to Mr. Davidson's rendition first, then Tull's as a last resort. The story itself is classic Sharpe. Enough said.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Three cheers for Patrick Tull!

I am very pleased that Patrick Tull is starting to narrate the Sharpe series. I'm almost through Patrick O'brian's Aubrey/Maturin series, also narrated by Patrick Tull (note: don't even consider trying an Aubrey/Maturin audiobook if it isn't narrated by Tull) and discoveringCornwell's Captain Sharpe takes the edge off of the inevitable O'brian withdrawal.
Sharpe's Escape is a great listen, with well-developed characters and (unlike Scharra's historical fiction) realistic dialogue.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jean
  • Santa Cruz, CA, United States
  • 10-08-11

Sharpe's Escape

Another great story from Bernard Cornwell. This one has lots of battle scenes and great descriptions of the Portuguese country side. No wonder the people of the conquered countries hated the French with their destruction of cities and rape of women and children. But I assume all conquering armies act the same. This book revealed the more stubborn side of Sharpe and his brilliance as a soldier. Patrick Tull does a great job narrating this book.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • David
  • NAMPA, IDAHO, United States
  • 11-18-05

Another Obrian/Tull fan

If you like Patrick Obrians books read by Tull you will like this one. I very much hope Tull reads more of the Sharpe series.
One of my favorite aspects of the Aubrey/Maturin Series is the comedy between the two freinds. The comedy is different in these books but its just as good, and the action/detail is perfect.

Listen to it, you wont be sorry.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Tull's narration

There are currently 2 primary narrators for the Sharp series, Davidson and Gaminara. Although I strongly prefer Davidson's characterization of Sharp's personality, Gaminara is different but a similar character comes through. For some obscure reason, P. Tull is the only narrator for Book X. Tull totally loses the character, slurs his presentation and makes all characters sound like old men who are simply incoherent. I really cannot follow the story and would suggest skipping Book X rather than suffering through Tull's presentation. It is only Cornwell's wonderful writing that keeps me listening to this book.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Cameron
  • Monterey, CA, United States
  • 10-05-08

Really enjoyed this one

One of the best Sharpe books. I love the scene where Sharpe and his companions are trapped in the cellar.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • victoria
  • New York, NY, United States
  • 07-10-07

Thumbs down on Tull

I couldn't even finish this one -- the narrator just didn't take me to Portugal or help me to care about the characters. His depiction lacks the clarity and character definition that I've come to depend on from David Case/Frederick Davidson (try his Forsyte Saga, or Bleak House and other Dickens). I'm guessing the book itself is up to the author's usual high standards of vivid and exciting story-telling. But it's too hard getting there! Will perhaps come back when I've finished the rest.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Can't stand Tull

Loved the book but hated the reader. I've listened to most of the Sharpe series and skipped this one until now, but I will not listen to Tull again. It sounds like the narrator is constantly spitting and gasping for breath. The spitting sounds are very distracting, bet he buys microphones by the gross.

7 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Tull, Cornwell & O'brian ...

As put sooo well by Bradley above, the combination of Cornwell & Tull is dangerously close to the O'Brian & Tull collaboration! Why is there not more Cornwell/Tull narratives?
After listening to the O'Brian-Tull stories for the 4th time (it never gets boring), I search for more Cornwell and Tull is by far and away the best voice for his tales. Such companions they've become! Give them 5 stars! And Ganimera is a good second choice, too!
Being a history buff, I revel in Cornwell's detailed grasp of the era, its people and society, and it is so very easy to fall under their sway.
One work of advice, start at the beginning and read them all!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful