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Sharpe's Devil: Napoleon and South America, 1820-1821 (The Sharpe Series, Book 21) by [Cornwell, Bernard]
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Sharpe's Devil: Napoleon and South America, 1820-1821 (The Sharpe Series, Book 21) Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 86 customer reviews

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Length: 323 pages Word Wise: Enabled Audible Narration:
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Review

‘Sharpe and his creator are national treasures.' Sunday Telegraph

'Bernard Cornwell is a literary miracle. Year after year, hail, rain, snow, war and political upheavals fail to prevent him from producing the most entertaining and readable historical novels of his generation.' Daily Mail

'Cornwell's narration is quite masterly and supremely well-researched.' Observer
‘The best battle scenes of any writer I’ve ever read, past or present. Cornwell really makes history come alive.’ George R.R. Martin

Oxford Times

‘Cornwell at his inventive best’

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 423 KB
  • Print Length: 323 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0007235178
  • Publisher: Harper; New Ed edition (25 Feb. 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003GUBHZS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 86 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #8,039 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Six years after the end of the Napoleonic wars, ex-Rifleman Richard Sharpe toils on his French wife's farm in Normandy. Times are a little tough, so when the fabulously wealthy wife of a former Spanish comrade asks him to travel to Chile to find her missing husband, he can't refuse the gold that comes with the request. Naturally, Sharpe rounds up the now-rotund and prosperous tavern-keeper Patrick Harper before setting sail for South America. Their vessel is a Spanish one, ferrying a number of patronizing and foppish Spanish officers who are off to fight the Chilean rebels (who are led by the intriguing half-Spanish, half-Irish gentleman Bernardo O'Higgins). These Spaniards decide to take a minor detour to St. Helena to gawk at the imprisoned Napoleon, and of course Sharpe and Harper can't resist the chance to pay their own respects. The ex-emperor is by now rotting away in his dank mansion, with peeling wallpaper, a poor wine-cellar, and a large British garrison to keep him company. Treated like a curiosity in a zoo, he is disdainful of the Spaniards, but is intrigued by Sharpe and Harper, who are clearly fellow warriors. Cornwell has a lot of fun with this section, as the two old soldiers talk shop, honor each other, and Sharpe, with his customary naivite is unwittingly drawn into intrigue.
Eventually, the ship arrives in Chile, where Sharpe is told the man he is seeking, Captain-General Vivar, is actually dead. Of course, Sharpe is suspicious when a body can't be produced, and soon he and Harper have run afoul of the thoroughly evil Spanish Governor-General Bautista. Events entertainingly run their course, and soon the dynamic duo find themselves on the side of the rebels seeking to eject the Spaniards from Chile.
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Format: Paperback
Interesting solution to keeping Sharpe alive after most of his protagonists have been killed and/or defeated by the time of Waterloo. Even though the Napoleonic wars are over, Cornwell finds a way for Napoleon to influence Sharpe's life, to detach Patrick from his idyllic life and to set the two on another quest. Although this book may not have quite the same capacity to involve the reader in the art of warfare as it happened so long ago, Cornwell produces a credible adventure that keeps the reader's attention throughout... but where can he go now?
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Format: Paperback
Sharpe's Devil is a cracking good read. After the relatively (and only relatively) disappointing Waterloo this is a back to basics Sharpe, a real boys-own, gung-ho adventure. It's different from the Napoleonic novels, not quite as gritty, but it has a fast paced story line and a good plot.
There are some strong characters in this too. Sharpe is pretty much the same, as is Harper, apart from now being enormously fat. Napoleon seems to hang over the book like a shadow and I couldn't believe that Admiral Cochrane existed, but according to the historical note he did, and in reality his larger than life persona was even more so.
Cornwell has got it right yet again, a blend of action and adventure in a highly credible historical setting.
Since he did not write all the novels in chronological order I have often wondered how he avoided anachronisms and in this I think I have found one. Sharpe is engaged in what is described as his first sea battle off the Chilean coast. However, as Cornwell has since penned Trafalgar which is set some fifteen years before - I suspect (though I haven't read it yet) Sharpe had some hand in this most famous battle at sea - an error possibly. Similarly Sharpe is amazed that Cochrane met Nelson, I just bet Sharpe has met him too!
Minor criticisms of an excellent book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Having read all of BC's books this was the last one I had to read and also the last in the Sharpe series. It was ok, but easily the weakest in the whole Sharpe series and also all of BC's books, not quite the struggle that Stonehenge was though. Sharpe and Harper should have just marched off at the end of Waterloo and be done; a book too far!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
As a hugh Sharpe fan (both TV and Book) I thought no more Sharpe after Waterloo - wrong. This book is great. Sharpe on both land and sea. Sharpe is for the reader who likes heroes getting in the thick of the action. Has some reference back to previous books but still great for a first time Sharpe reader. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in a good, fast and enjoying read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is as usual a very good and interesting read. As with all the Sharpe books I thoroughly enjoy the story, and the action.
I have read many of Bernard Cornwell's books and can say without a doubt that he is my favourite author.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
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.
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