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Sharpe's Havoc: The Northern Portugal Campaign, Spring 1809 (The Sharpe Series, Book 7) by [Cornwell, Bernard]
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Sharpe's Havoc: The Northern Portugal Campaign, Spring 1809 (The Sharpe Series, Book 7) Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 92 customer reviews

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Length: 385 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Amazon.co.uk Review

One thing is as sure as death and taxes: that each successive Bernard Cornwell novel will be as exhilarating as its predecessor. Sharpe's Havoc continues the trend, demonstrating once again why the Richard Sharpe books by Cornwell are among the most cherished examples of historical derring-do around. While the novels are all assiduously detailed, with a precise sense of period, Cornwell knows how essential it is that his hero, the danger-prone Richard Sharpe, is as vividly characterised as ever. True to form, in Sharpe's Havoc we never lose sight of the character of the protagonist and the many members of the idiosyncratic supporting cast.

This time, we are taken to the spring of 1809 when a few British soldiers are stationed in Lisbon as Marshal Soult undertakes his assault on the garrison of Northern Portugal. It's not for Sharpe and his trusty crew of riflemen to dwell on the finer points of politics when they are sent into the city of Oporto to save the lives of two British women who have elected to stay. But when one of the women, Kate Savage, goes missing, Sharpe (along with Sergeant Patrick Harper and several battle-hardened colleagues) finds himself besieged in the city when the bridge over the river falls to the enemy. The English are forced on in a desperate journey back to the safety of the British encampment, but things become very murky when an enigmatic English officer informs them that they will be staying in the hellhole that is Northern Portugal.

Cornwell admirers will know exactly what to expect, and all the heady pleasures that distinguished such earlier books as Sharpe's Battle and Sharpe's Company are fully in place here, with the added impetus that comes from a notably picaresque narrative. All the central characters are drawn with the customary forcefulness, and instead of the expected tension and release that is the hallmark of most Cornwell novels, there's a steadily increasing excitement engendered here that leads to an all-stops-out finale. --Barry Forshaw

Amazon Review

One thing is as sure as death and taxes: that each successive Bernard Cornwell novel will be as exhilarating as its predecessor. Sharpe's Havoc continues the trend, demonstrating once again why the Richard Sharpe books by Cornwell are among the most cherished examples of historical derring-do around. While the novels are all assiduously detailed, with a precise sense of period, Cornwell knows how essential it is that his hero, the danger-prone Richard Sharpe, is as vividly characterised as ever. True to form, in Sharpe's Havoc we never lose sight of the character of the protagonist and the many members of the idiosyncratic supporting cast.

This time, we are taken to the spring of 1809 when a few British soldiers are stationed in Lisbon as Marshal Soult undertakes his assault on the garrison of Northern Portugal. It's not for Sharpe and his trusty crew of riflemen to dwell on the finer points of politics when they are sent into the city of Oporto to save the lives of two British women who have elected to stay. But when one of the women, Kate Savage, goes missing, Sharpe (along with Sergeant Patrick Harper and several battle-hardened colleagues) finds himself besieged in the city when the bridge over the river falls to the enemy. The English are forced on in a desperate journey back to the safety of the British encampment, but things become very murky when an enigmatic English officer informs them that they will be staying in the hellhole that is Northern Portugal.

Cornwell admirers will know exactly what to expect, and all the heady pleasures that distinguished such earlier books as Sharpe's Battle and Sharpe's Company are fully in place here, with the added impetus that comes from a notably picaresque narrative. All the central characters are drawn with the customary forcefulness, and instead of the expected tension and release that is the hallmark of most Cornwell novels, there's a steadily increasing excitement engendered here that leads to an all-stops-out finale. --Barry Forshaw


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2534 KB
  • Print Length: 385 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; U.K. edition (24 July 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002RI9QNA
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars 92 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #8,237 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
For long-time fans like me who found "Sharpe's Prey" a bit below par, I'm pleased to say that this one returns to first principles, frog-bashing in the Peninsula; and the author is back on form. If you wondered what happened to Sharpe, Harper & Co. after they joined forces on the retreat to Vigo (Sharpe's Rifles, Jan.1809) and before Talavera (Sharpe's Eagle, July 1809), here's the answer. The Greenjackets are in the wilds of Portugal, where the best Sharpe stories are set, on a mission for Capt. Hogan, the future spy-master. Marshal Soult, 'Duke of Damnation' and aspiring King of Portugal, is closing in. Is all lost? Wait! an obscure sepoy general called Wellesley has landed at Lisbon ...
I'll leave the plot there except to say that it's a ripping yarn (and I've been reading them for twenty years). We meet an upper-class villain fit to take on Sir Henry Simmerson; a beautiful, runaway heiress; and a young Portuguese officer of character and education who has a thing or two to learn from Sharpe. Deja vu? Well, some of the best vus are deja. There have been better ones than this but not many. The atmosphere is as thick as Dan Hagman's tea. There are passages of real sardonic humour, which comes as a relief after the last outing. The action sequences are many and unsurpassed. My only regret is that an old favourite, Sweet William, hasn't shown up yet.
The time slots are filling up but Cornwell makes good use of them. Sharpe and Harper march again. What are you waiting for? And if you didn't understand any of the above, still read the book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This story grabs you from the start, I have read and re read the whole series several times and each time I have become totally involved in the story. Sharpe is a Hero although a very unconventional one. Whilst you know the book is fiction you are still really involved in the story. Long live Sharpe!
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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: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I paid 99p for this book and I am glad I didn't pay more! It is not worth it!
The book follows on from Sharpe's Rifles, which was a much better book and more full of
action.
It is set completely in Portugal, which interested me as I now live in that country, so I
could understand the scenery and the attitude of the locals.
Sharpe and his men are cut off from the main army and have to protect an English girl
supposedly married to a Colonel, who turns out to be a traitor and out to feather his
own nest. There is too much hanging around at the quinta (a farm) waiting for orders until
the men finally get into a battle.

The characters are not developed and the battles are repeats of previous books. You could
skip this book and not lose anything in the reading.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Warts & all, Richard Sharp is admirable, courageous, very intelligent, and extremely lucky. This tale is exciting and as always a history lesson at the same time. This is the first time that Sharp finds his way as an officer, earning the respect of the men, who despise his origins as much as the gentleman officers do. The prejudices of the period are exposed in all their ugliness, but Sharp has powerful friends too.
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By Valerie Gail bartlett TOP 500 REVIEWER on 30 Oct. 2015
Format: Paperback
A small British army is stranded when the French invade northern Portugal and Lieutenant Richard Sharpe meets the future Duke of Wellington. Sharpe is stranded behind enemy lines, but he has Patrick Harper, his riflemen and he has the assistance of a young, idealistic Portuguese officer. When he is joined by the future Duke of Wellington they immediately mount a counter-attack and Sharpe, having been the hunted, becomes the hunter once more. Amidst the wreckage of a defeated army, in the storm lashed hills of the Portuguese frontier, Sharpe takes his revenge. Soldier, hero, rogue - Sharpe is the man you always want on your side. Born in poverty, he joined the army to escape jail and climbed the ranks by sheer brutal courage.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Like the previous six books in the Sharpe's series this is a superb read. It is so well written that you can imagine being on the battlefield with the 95th. Rifles.
I would recommend any of the series of 24 books. I will read all of them but i think they are best read in order so that you don't lose the thread of events as they unfold.
I have given it 5 stars as I think you will not find a better read in this genre.
Buy any of them on Kindle or book form, you will not be dissapointed.
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Format: Hardcover
The first question is, do I have to have read the other Sharpe books to enjoy this one?
The answer is absolutely not! As a book in it's own right this is a cracking read. The characters are superb, the historical setting spot on, and the pace of the book excellent.
The storyline is a little simplistic, but this in no way detracts from the core of the novel which revolves around Richard Sharpe's character - and a better rogue to lead you into battle there ain't.
The second question is, I've read the others, is this as good?
Everyone has their favourite Sharpe novel. If you like Sharpe to be in the middle of the action, leading his troup of reprabates against the French, this is up there with the best.
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