Monday, 20 October 2008

Bernard Cornwell - "Sharpe's Trafalgar"

Bernard Cornwell - "Sharpe's Trafalgar: Richard Sharpe and the Battle of Trafalgar, 21 October 1805"
Publ: 2000 ISBN: 0002258749
Rating: *****

The fourth book in the Sharpe series sees Sharpe leave India and ship back to England, stopping en route to take part in the Battle of Trafalgar. War at sea making a change (for him and the reader) to his usual war on land is nevertheless equally brilliantly described. Apart from Trafalgar he has a few other adventrures on the way including being on board an East India ship when she gets captured by a formidable French warship, the Revenant, which has been terrorizing British nautical traffic in the Indian Ocean. Sharpe ends up aboard a 74-gun man-of-war called Pucelle and takes part in vanquishing the combined naval might of France and Spain at Trafalgar.

Since my first Sharpe book (Sharpe's Tigers) the rating for Cornwell's stories has still not dropped below a four and this just crept into the five star category because of the excellent portrayal of the battle - though it's all a bit arbitrary and any one of the previous ones might have been the one to get the five stars.

As always there is a postscript few pages to sort fact from fiction which is most helpful and leaves one feeling not only replete with good storytelling but educated at the same time.


1 comment:

  1. Very appropriate timing given that today (21st October) is the anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar). You knew that. But I thought I make the comment anyway.


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