My dear Mr Cornwell,
Many years ago I happened to pick up a book to read on my flight to London. I had no idea of what reading pleasures would lie ahead. The book was titled “The Archer’s Tale”.
I’ve since read it, and its two companions in the set, a total of three times. I’ve read every Richard Sharpe book (and enjoyed watching Sean Bean in the role) and numerous others by the same, uniquely gifted, writer. Am at present on “The Empty Throne”. The author has become – and I'm a very discriminating reader – one of my top favorites, in a niche reserved for Charles Dickens and a small handful of other authors. When in a reading mood, or mode, I can devour, inhale, a lot of books. Not ashamed to say that I have been a Bernard Cornwell addict.
You are like water in the Sahara, a fresh breeze, a chilled martini at the end of the day, an early Rolling Stones record, a Kinks song, a Haydn symphony, a Handel opera. You are Ray Charles and John Lee Hooker; you’ve introduced me to so many events, places, and people, among them Lord Wellington; with a style that is “just right”. I would imagine that you don’t spend your free time reading current day fiction, so take my word for it that the books are, for the most part, appallingly bad, badly written, poor proofing and editing, some of them really stupid, nothing more than the output of people who’ve stumbled onto an agent and publisher, figured out a formula (a brightly colored dust cover helps a lot) and laugh all the way to the bank. Some of these people should not be allowed to write.
At the end of a Bernard Cornwell book I often look at the brief bio in the book jacket and wonder at the craftsmanship of this man and give thanks that I was so lucky to stumble upon “The Archer’s Tale”.
My kindest humble regards.
Hello, Master Bernard!
My name is Paulo. I am 22 years old and I am from Pernambuco, Brazil.
First of all I apologize for the dubious English ... I hope you understand.
Last weekend, I finished the chronicles of Arthur, the sixteenth book of yours that I read only this year! And what an end of a long journey!
In mid-April I met Uhtred's stories and fell in love since the first book. Your descriptions of places ... people ... are very sensitive. The genre of historical romance by his hands captivated me in an unbelievable way. One of the things that surprised me most was the humanity of the characters. Uhtred is very human, is a man with doubts about himself and about others. I could see a lot of myself in it. In this, I can thank you personally for talking so deeply with your readers that you have to reflect on life. In addition, I fell in love with his literature full of violence but with a great sensitivity to these problems and with several current discussions. I say that I fell in love because I do not like books made solely to discourse on a problem ... I like to reflect on society and life ... but together with a great epic battle !!! And in that the Lord became the Lord of Books.
And what battles !!!
At the end of Uhtred's second book, try to imagine the battle for Uhtred's first-person vision and not the third ... with his description it was easy ... What an experience !!! I'll never forget!! I swear I could feel the fear !! The rain!! The smells !! How terrible! But incredible at the same time! Unforgettable!
So I borrowed the Grail Quest books. Again I found myself in the descriptions and sensations ... in the persanalidad of an archer in doubts with himself ... Wrapped in a gigantic and mysterious plot ... doing searches in the internet to know more and more on the bottom ... and I saw listening to the noise of a yew bow ... So incredible !! I love bowing and I tell you that one day I will create a long bow with my own hands! Oops, I was forgetting ... I saw myself in that dark but beautiful end to Thomas's third book ... A shocking but incredible closure ...
So I borrowed Arthur's chronicles, thinking that my book timeline was going to make me feel unwilling to go back to the past ... I could not be more wrong ...
How can you keep the level always ???
The chronicles of Arthur surprised me in many ways ... The story a little melancholy for the sad future of the British ... The remains of Rome ... The mystery behind the magic of the druids ... The subtlety of this magic !! You never know when it's magic or trick, you have to think a lot !!!
More and more captivating characters ... incredible descriptions ... dark times and happy moments ... Arthur's chronicles were a mixture of unforgettable experiences ... and nothing in his other fifteen books that I read prepared me for that end .. .
It was very sad, I cried for that final, that farewell. I was so moved that I could not help but write this humble testimony from a fan who devoured 10 Uhtred books, 3 Thomas books and 3 Derfel books in a few months.
I really wanted to thank you for your hard work, sensitive, attentive, caring to your fans in creating unforgettable stories ... I have no words to describe the moments I had in your readings, I can only thank. I believe that I have to thank only for the fact that you write what I like to read, I think I appreciate the fact that you are a master of stories, have so much love with them and pass them that way to the pages of books.
I just have to thank you, Master Bernard, for everything. I will continue to be your unconditional fan and hope one day to open your hand and thank personally for the stories you told me.
Affectionately and with the razor sharp blades for "War of the Wolf",
Paulo Henrique da Silva.
Dear Mr Cornwell
I thought you might be interested in this article:
Also, just to say that War of the Wolf was as excellent as ever!
Thanks and kindest regards
Terry - From a very damp and autumnal south Essex
I was interested and appalled. Thank you for leading me to the article which I hadn’t seen.
I'd rather you write your books than have me take your time up, so I'll be as brief as I can. My favourite authors were Tolkien, Patrick O'Brien, PG Wodehouse, and James Herriot. I enjoyed Sharpe, but the Uhtred novels (as I shall call them) elevate you to that list. Beautifully constructed, great characters, often capricious and flawed and very human, against an ill-documented and fascinating historical backdrop. Also with my having a classically obsessed daughter taking Ancient and Modern History at Oxford, I can understand where Uhtred's remarks about Rome come from. The consistency of quality across all the novels is outstanding and I can only think the family connection inspired you particularly. Thank you for writing what you have written. I have learned and I have enjoyed.
Hello, Mr. Bernard Cornwell.
I am writing this commentary just to say congratulations for your success and I would like to say that I am the biggest fan of your job in The Last Kingdom. If you need any soldier remember me. Just send me an e-mail and I will be there. I know kung fu technics that could help perhaps.
I am artist painting and I start to write some stories. So I hope one day I will be able to be famous as you are now.
It is my pleasure write for you as a good friend.
Please continue your great job because this is the only way for the public learn history in a fun way.
The best regards
I am a winery owner in Tennessee, very successful if I may say. I enjoy a good book. I have recently discovered your books, The Last Kingdom series on Audible. I just wanted to tell you that I enjoy your work more than any I have read or listened to. I have often wondered about the early history of England and you have pulled back the curtain for me. So, as someone who appreciates an honest "thank you", I just want to say "thank you" for your work
I’ve just finished the War Of The Wolf, a wonderful continuation of the Uhtred story. I don’t usually do this but your books have given me so much enjoyment over the years I felt I had to say thank you. I am looking forward to the next one, as I have every one so far.
My local librarian suggested a Sharpe book to me many years ago and since you have given me many hours of pleasure. Currently reading War of the Wolf. I love the maps which you always use. I even got my wife to read Fools and Mortals a while back. History has always been such fun for me and to learn history while having a good story was a great idea for someone, maybe you. I've since learned of others who are good (not as you) like Wilbur Smith, Philip Kerr, and Allan Furst. I live in the upstate of South Carolina. Thank you so much.
Just wanted to say how much I have enjoyed Uhtred's journey. I particularly enjoy the realism and how you have captured the harsh living conditions of the age. Just started War of the Wolf and wanted to let you know how much I and my brother have enjoyed your work. Thank you for the adventures and long may they continue!
Hi Mr. Cornwell,
I was just reading through the comments and questions and I concur with the consensus: we love your books so please write more!
Perhaps, if Uhtred's age becomes an issue you could do what you did with Sharpe and fit some stories in between existing stories.
We don't care, we just want more.
And thank you.