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4.0 out of 5 stars Sharpe finds himself in the thick of Nelson's Battle But why
Bernard Cornwell's latest addition to the Sharpe saga fits between Sharpe's Fortress and Sharpe's Rifles. He is an Ensign and needs to get back to England to join the newly formed rifles. He joins a ship of the East India company convoy and is forced to travel in the worst accomodation. Also on board he meets Pohlmann, whom enthusiasts will remember from a previous...
Published on 29 April 2000

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Where is the Sharpe of old?
Most of us reading this page have a lot of time and enthusiam invested in Richard Sharpe's brilliant career. On finishing the Sharpe series, I reluctantly launched off into O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin saga - very sorry to leave the dashing Sharpe behind. Now, with the 20 volumes of O'Brian's wonderful work just behind, I looked forward to Cornwell's...
Published on 9 Jun 2000


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Where is the Sharpe of old?, 9 Jun 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Sharpe's Trafalgar (Hardcover)
Most of us reading this page have a lot of time and enthusiam invested in Richard Sharpe's brilliant career. On finishing the Sharpe series, I reluctantly launched off into O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin saga - very sorry to leave the dashing Sharpe behind. Now, with the 20 volumes of O'Brian's wonderful work just behind, I looked forward to Cornwell's "Trafalgar" as a way to keep the magic of the Royal Navy with me. O'Brian is probably an impossibly high standard by which to measure this book, but what has struck me painfully on reading "Trafalgar", was how cartoonish Richard Sharpe has become. Sharpe was always "pulled up from the gutter" not only by his own bootstraps, but also from the strength of his character. His always seeminly sullied integrity that would come shining through, alongside his almost always James Bondian heroics, was the essence of the Sharpe books. Here, he's not even at war and he commits a murder. Why? We're told it's because the victim had "made an enemy" of Richard Sharpe. In sum, this is not the Richard Sharpe of the other 16 books. The characters here, including Richard, are all thin - to the point of being two dimensional. "Trafalgar" unfortuately is not an integral part of the Sharpe sequence and could just as well be left off the list. If the Royal Navy of the Peninsular War sparks your interest, read O'Brian.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Sharpe finds himself in the thick of Nelson's Battle But why, 29 April 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Sharpe's Trafalgar (Hardcover)
Bernard Cornwell's latest addition to the Sharpe saga fits between Sharpe's Fortress and Sharpe's Rifles. He is an Ensign and needs to get back to England to join the newly formed rifles. He joins a ship of the East India company convoy and is forced to travel in the worst accomodation. Also on board he meets Pohlmann, whom enthusiasts will remember from a previous book. Lord William, Sharpe's obligatory upper class rival, and his beautiful wife Lady Grace, and yes, he does. The ship is betrayed by the Captain and captured by the French ship "Revenant". The ship is en route to be sold when it is recaptured by "Pucelle" Captained by Sharpe's friend Captain Chase. The next part of the book consists of a fascinating chase by "Pucelle" after "Revenant" and the even more fascinating indiscretions of Sharpe and Lady Grace. Finally "Revenant" joins the Franco Spanish fleet and "Pucelle" Nelson's fleet and they head off to battle off the point of Trafalgar and you know the result of that. Suffice to say Dick does us proud. The book, as you'd expect, from Cornwell is researched beyond belief and Bernards startlingly descriptive writing of battles on land has been effectively transferred to sea. The smell burns your sinuses and the cloying smoke and heat as you stand amidst the caldron of the lower gun decks and atop the rigging leave you wide eyed. Stood alone, a fascinating account of the battle and, as expected, a damn good read but, for me, Sharpe's presence spoilt it! Having read all the novels in the series it struck me that Bernard had put him there to satisfy some pressure to perpetuate the saga. I don't think he should have. Sharpe should be left on his Normandy farm in 1819. But read this book as a "stand alone" and you will be struck by the pictures Cornwell can write. In short Bernard more battles please but Sharpe has had his day.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Another great adventure with Mister Sharpe!, 25 April 2000
This review is from: Sharpe's Trafalgar (Hardcover)
With a final parting shot to India, Ensign Sharpe finds passage home to England aboard the Calliope. But the journey is to be an eventful one, fraught with danger and conspiracies aplenty! The estranged Peculiar Cromwell, adventuring Royal Navy Captain Chase, the beautiful Lady Grace, and the cold and calculating Sir William Hale - all conspire to liven the voyage westwards. Richard Sharpe is a fish out of water, getting used to life on the ocean wave. He soon proves his mettle at Trafalgar, however, and helps turn the tide against a determined foe. Revenge is at hand. Sharpe is out for blood in a nautical world of cannon and cutlass. There is a brief meeting with Lord Horatio Nelson, before the hounds of war are released. Good adventure, good reading. Perhaps not the best Sharpe novel, but certainly added a different perspective to Sharpe's campaigns. Lovely climatic ending. As ever, Bernard Cornwell's attention to detail proves his research into historical fact is faultless. One almost imagined being there: the crashing waves, the snapping canvas, the creak of timber, admist the smoke, blood, and roar of guns. Richard Sharpe is one of England's unsong heroes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The highlight of the series so far, 21 July 2013
This review is from: Sharpe's Trafalgar: The Battle of Trafalgar, 21 October 1805 (The Sharpe Series, Book 4) (Paperback)
This book covers Sharpe's voyage home to England from India, as the title implies via the Battle of Trafalgar. The book has real pace from start to finish with an interesting sub plot in the form of Sharpe's romantic involvement. The historical backdrop is interesting and full of detail. Overall an excellent read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sharpe kicking arse yet again! Brilliant!, 24 July 2012
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Sharpes creator does another excellent job of dropping him right in the doo-doo yet again.
I really appreciate the afterwords where Mr Cornwell explains where, when, and who inspired the acts credited to Sharpe. I think that the memories of those who were really there are well served.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars On the way home from India Sharpe gets caught up in Trafalgar, 7 Jun 2007
By 
Marshall Lord (Whitehaven, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Only Richard Sharpe could get caught up in a fleet battle on the way home from India and find romance on a Royal Navy line-of-battle ship. But he does, and it's a highly entertaining read, if a little dark and implausible in places. Bernard Cornwell had to stretch things a bit to explain what an army officer was doing at a sea battle, and although Sharpe has always had a brutal way with bad guys, he is particularly ruthless with a minor villain in this book.

"Sharpe's Trafalgar" is set after the conclusion of the prequel trilogy of novels set in India, in which he obtained a fabulous treasure, was promoted to be an officer after saving the life of General Wellesley (the future Duke of Wellington), and dealt with the traitor Dodd. Shipping home to join the 95th Rifles, Sharpe initially takes passage on an East Indiaman, and finds an old opponent as one of the passengers. Treachery follows and the ship is captured by the French.

However, as the story is about Sharpe's Trafalgar, we know that he will not remain a prisoner of war for long. Sure enough, after an involved series of events, including the obligatory rescue of a lady in distress, Sharpe and his fellow passengers find themselves guests on a Royal Navy 74 gun ship of the line, chasing a French battleship half-way round the world. Until both ships arrive off Cape Trafalgar on 21st October 1805 ...

As usual Bernard Cornwell has done a great deal of research so that the Napoleonic era battles he describe seem real, and in the historical note at the end he explains that many of the events described during the battle of Trafalgar were based on things which really happened.

The next novel after this in the chronological sequence is "Sharpe's Prey," the main action of which is set two years later in 1807 when Napoleon's continental blockade results in war between Britain and Denmark. That book also tells you what happens to Sharpe's relationship with Lady Grace, the heroine of "Sharpe's Trafalgar".

If you liked the other Sharpe books, there is an excellent chance that you will like this one.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Another great Sharpe novel, 10 May 2000
This review is from: Sharpe's Trafalgar (Hardcover)
Once again Cornwell manages do another throughly enjoyable Sharpe (You would think that after all the novels so far he would run out of Ideas) this time with our hero pursuing a French privateer at see. Although I would rather have seen a final confrantion between Sharpe and Antony Pholam (makes a welcome return from Sharpes triumph). And with having Sharpe at Trafalgur it contradicts Sharpes Devil in which it says that tbattle was Sharpes first sea battle. Cannot wait for the next Sharpe though and how he gets promoted to Leiutenant
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4.0 out of 5 stars Not the best, but still damn good., 22 Jun 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Sharpe's Trafalgar (Hardcover)
This is not the best of the 'new' sharp novels - Fortress is better - but this is a massive improvement upon some of the more lackluster Sharpe novels from the late 70's/early 80's. Cornwell manages to portray his hero as both noble and brutal - difficult but he pulls it off.
Of great suprise to me was of course the name of the ship - I've used it as an internet name many times previously ...
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good but not the best!, 13 April 2000
By A Customer
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This review is from: Sharpe's Trafalgar (Hardcover)
Well even Bernard Cornwall recognises that Sharpe being at Trafalgar is somewhat tenuous! Yet that fact doesn't detract from what is, as usual, a good Sharpe yarn!
Not as good as some of the others maybe, but all Sharpe fans will love it and devour it! The usual mixture of heroes, villeins and damsels in distress, and of course Richard Sharpe carving his way through enemies!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Marvellous Adventure Story !, 18 April 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Sharpe's Trafalgar (Hardcover)
Cornwell once again succeeds in creating a wonderful story for his hero Richard Sharpe. The story moves along at a great pace, and Sharpe's meeting with Admiral Nelson is one of the high points of the book, illustrating extremely well Cornwell's ability to blend fiction with exceptionally accurate historical fact. A book you will find difficult to put down.
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Sharpe's Trafalgar: The Battle of Trafalgar, 21 October 1805 (The Sharpe Series, Book 4)
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