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Publisher's Summary

1799. As the British Army fights its way through India toward a diabolical trap, the young and illiterate private Richard Sharpe must battle both man and beast behind enemy lines, in an attempt to push the ruthless Tippoo of Mysore from his throne and drive his French allies out of India.

Posing as a deserter, Sharpe must penetrate into the Tippoo's city and make contact with a Scottish spy being held prisoner there. Success will mean winning his sergeant stripes; failure, being turned over to the Tippoo's brutal executioners or his man-eating tigers.

Picking his way through an exotic and alien world, one slip will mean disaster as Sharpe learns that he must fight his old comrades in order to save his own neck. Along the way, he keeps an eye out for Mysore's beautiful prostitutes, any stray loot he can get his hands on, and the chance to learn his ABCs. But when the furious British assault on the city begins, Sharpe must fight with the fierceness and agility of a tiger himself to foil the Tippoo's trap, and to keep from being killed by his own side.

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.

©1997 Bernard Cornwell (P)2000 Blackstone Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

"Cornwell writes more gripping battle scenes than any other contemporary author." (Kirkus Reviews)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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  • Erik
  • Sooke, British Columbia, Canada
  • 01-17-15

The start of the Sharps series

Like many, the character of Sharpe was not new to me, but I had always seen and read various stories in an order very different than the series progressed. This book is where it all starts, and it is a must read for those interested in the series and the character of Sharpe. As with most, if not all, of Cornwell's works, this is well researched and written.

Unfortunately, this is one of the rare cases where the narrator detracted from the story. I found his cadence disjointed, with frequent pauses in areas that interrupted the flow. Inflection and modulation was also missing, no matter how urgent the action or scene. Maybe it was just me, but I found the audio version hard to listen to.

My final recommendation: read the book. The book itself is a "must" for fans of the series, but avoid the narration.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Sharpe's Tiger

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes I would. There is no such thing as a bad Sharpe book.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Sharpe's Tiger?

Yes it has. I have read all of the Sharpe books. I read them before I bought the Audible narration.

What does Frederick Davidson bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Cornwell is a wonderful story teller. As the volumes increased there are many instances of Cornwell plagiarizes himself.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

As with other read and listen narration, it's a bit slow.

Any additional comments?

If you've watched Sharpe's Rifles you have a face to go with the characters. It makes the story so much better.

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  • Jake
  • Marietta, GA United States
  • 02-17-14

Great historical fiction

Would you consider the audio edition of Sharpe's Tiger to be better than the print version?

I was afraid this would be a story written with modern attitudes, sensibilities, isms, etc and be merely labled as historical fiction as is so often the case. Aside from characters, plot, etc. what I really like about this series is that it seems sociologically realistic. One imagines 1800s Brit sociology, esp military, very much not PC by modern sensibilities. This was back when people actually still dueled from time to time. There were great, interesting characters, both male and, which is more rare regardless of genera, female. Sharpe's lady love isn't a basketcase, genius prodigy despite having no education either, nor more butch than the guys, or any of that stuff from modern settings I usually find teleported back and passed off as a historical novel. She has a good head on her shoulders, like Sharpe, and I but how things work out for them. Overall a great adventuring romp.

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  • Stephen
  • Marietta, GA, United States
  • 01-07-14

The Story of Mr. Sharpe Begins

What did you love best about Sharpe's Tiger?

It creates the character of Richard Sharpe of course. Gives a little more detail on how he was able to rise from the ranks and gives a great background to the Napoleonic Conflict to describe the various British / East India Company battles in India (though, much like the American conflicts with Native Americans, there isn't much glory in the British "invasion" of India, nor does Mr. Cornwell place any.)

What other book might you compare Sharpe's Tiger to and why?

It compares well with any of the Sharpe novels. As it was written chronologically after many of the Napoleonic Sharpe novels, the author does a wonderful job of going back and explaining the background of many of the Sharpe characters and story lines.

Which character – as performed by Frederick Davidson – was your favorite?

Again that would have to be Richard Sharpe, for fairly obvious reasons.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

As I didn't start on the Sharpe novels until last year, it raised my anticipation level for the remaining Sharpe novels (which, with one exception, I devoured in about a months time).

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  • V.Straka
  • Ontario, CA United States
  • 09-20-13

Couldn't Wait to Get Into the Car

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

The story is fast paced and historically interesting. The narrator does a great job moving between the different characters. I felt like I was listening to a master story teller, rather than listening to someone read a book aloud. I listen to audible books primarily in the car, and I couldn't wait to get into the car and listen. I have read most of the Sharpe series over the past 20 years so I expected the story to be entertaining, but the narrator really brings this book to life.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Sharpe's Tiger?

Sharpe's individual encounter with the tiger guarding the prison cells is a very memorable moment.

Which scene was your favorite?

My favorite scene is either Sharpe's enounter with the tiger at the prison cells or when Sharpe is first tested by the Tipoo.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes. I found myself looing for a reason to get into the car so i could continue listening to the story.

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Enjoyed my Introduction to Sharpe

Where does Sharpe's Tiger rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This book ranks among my enjoyable books. It was not among the outstanding, but good nonetheless.

What other book might you compare Sharpe's Tiger to and why?

This book made me feel like I was on the infantry side of the Aubrey/Maturin series.

Any additional comments?

The narration was good. Sometimes the suspense was drawn out too long, but overall well done and an interesting read.

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Wellington's Honorable Rogue

Prepare to be hooked on Richard Sharpe. From the moment our uneducated, street-smart, ruthless hero steps onto the pages, you will fall in love with Private Sharpe. He may not be book educated, but through his native cunning and ruthlessness, he sure knows how to get out of a scrape with his skin intact. An honorable rogue is our Richard too.

Bernard Cornwell introduces the reader to a really enjoyable everyday guy who is just trying to survive the army. Lurching from one mistake after another, Sharpe almost loses it all... only to hit the jackpot in the end.

From my first reading so long ago, I have loved every story about Sharpe. The writing is excellent, the storyline enjoyable, and the characters believable. This book is an excellent way to pass a day or two.

Frederick Davidson is an outstanding narrator. His British accent adds realism to the story and his narration is a pleasure to hear. Yet his accent does not become a barrier to the enjoyment as I have found with Patrick Tull.

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Surprised me

Was not expecting such an entertaining historical novel. Felt like you were there. Good main character development and a lot of action.

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Nothing like a good Cornwell novel.

If you could sum up Sharpe's Tiger in three words, what would they be?

Elegant, Fun, Sharp...e

Who was your favorite character and why?

Richard Sharpe of course

Which character – as performed by Frederick Davidson – was your favorite?

They are all spot on.

If you could rename Sharpe's Tiger, what would you call it?

No need to rename it.

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  • Elizabeth
  • Carnation, WA, United States
  • 12-03-12

not engaging

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

no

If you’ve listened to books by Bernard Cornwell before, how does this one compare?

no

What three words best describe Frederick Davidson’s voice?

pompous, stilted, slow

Did Sharpe's Tiger inspire you to do anything?

no

Any additional comments?

I want to learn history while being entertained. This book didn't succeed in either. I gave it a 3 rating because it was a reasonable attempt.