Bulletin Board

Q

I hope you can bare with my horrid spelling and grammar as I am not the most avid spelling guru, but regards to the several books you have written on Uhtred's journey through life I must give you a salute and a bow as to the pleasure it is to read these books, my ancestry is a huge part of how I place myself in situations and while reading these books I lose myself I cry I feel my heart thud in a shield wall as though I am in it locked shield to shield with a Saxon or Dane. I just finished The Pagan Lord a few days ago and every day I wish I could get lost in his story and it may never end, but as I have seen you started him from a pup to now a Lord. The desire to know how my ancestors lived has been huge and I thank you for giving me an idea. You never forgot the smell of blood nor of men shitting themselves but the thrill of battle is in every young warrior to gain his honor and reputation.

I just want to tell you its honestly such a pleasure reading your book and it has been and ever will be my favorite series.

The warriors life lives in me yet as I am United States Marine, but to have a tale told such as Uhtred's will never be. Again and forever more thank you sir.

P.S. The Christian God got me, lets hope Uhtred can keep his hammer around his neck.
Levi Ryan Rodden


Q

Mr Cornwell,
I have just finished reading the first 8 books of your early English novels.
I have found them to be just wonderful to read.  I find myself really getting
into the characters.  Thomas of Hookton and the fella looking to get his
ancestral home back from his scheming uncle.
Thank you so much for a wonderful escape from life"s tribulations.
Robert Reinecke


Q

There is a most-interesting article in March, 2014, SMITHSONIAN magazine, p. 44, entitled, REVENGE OF THE VIKINGS, by Franz Lidz:   (After decades of scholarship that emphasized their kinder, gentler side, the bad boys of the North are back with a vengeance).  To quote from p. 48 of this article, it states that with the publication of Peter Sawyer’s THE AGE OF THE VIKINGS -1962. . .  a cuddly makeover BEGAN to change the popular perception of the Nordic voyagers . . . ‘to clean something up enough so that it is appropriate to discuss in your living room.”
The article tells of a major exhibition:  The Danes [themselves] are on hand for the final day of “Viking,” A MAJOR EXHIBITION THAT REOPENS AT THE BRITISH MUSEUM ON MARCH 6 AND RUNS THROUGH JUNE 22 BEFORE MOVING ON TO BERLIN. . . :   “Over the last few decades much new evidence has come out that has changed our perception of Viking culture . . . “
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British Museum's Viking show locates the original Scandinavian Noir
The academic discourse has been veering in that direction for over 50 years now, and if anything the British Museum is putting a bit of cold steel back into the debate ... falcons and slaves went one way and weapons …theguardian.com • 8 hours ago
British Museum to host "Vikings" exhibition
London: "Vikings," the British Museum's first major exhibition on the northern invaders for decades, will feature a 121-foot warship - the longest Viking vessel ever found - plus swords, axes, religious images and enough coins and jewelry to cause pirate envy.San Francisco Gate • 2/20/2014
The Viking warlord did not go quietly to his death — they never did. Ragnar ‘Hairy Britches’ was legendary for leading a fleet of longships up the Seine and pillaging Paris, but when he turned his band of marauders to …Daily Mail • 2/22/2014
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Vikings Invade UK on Ragnarok as British Museum Opens Biggest Exhibition in 35 Years [VIDEO]
A new exhibition at the British Museum in London explores the myth of Viking warriors as bloodthirsty looters and pillagers. The latest historical interpretations place warfare and a savage warrior mentality at the heart of …International Business Times • 2/22/2014
Treasures of the Vikings: The elaborate carvings, gold jewellery and 120ft boat that show how the brutal raiders were also the …
The centrepiece of the landmark exhibition is a 120ft-long boat, known as 'Roskilde 6', which stands as a compelling testament to the Norsemen's great achievement in sailing around the world, from Turkey to North …Daily Mail • 5 hours ago

On the one hand, the Vikings are part of us, because they settled in areas of Britain ... The exhibition’s pièce de résistance is the display of the longest Viking warship ever found (one of the largest that could have …New Statesman • 1 day ago
The truth about Vikings: Not the smelly barbarians of legend but silk-clad, blinged-up culture vultures   The construction of the ship has been dated to around AD 1025, the high point of the Viking Age when ... Peter J Mather, Group Regional Vice President, Europe and Head of Country, UK, BP.tnp.no • 2/20/2014
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This exhibition focuses on the (original?) Vikings . . . those who were bullies in Britain, France, and who pillaged as far as Baghdad . . . and these adventurers were long known as bloodthirsty barbarians. Of course, Christian monks, the article states, could well verify this.
I found this article most interesting, my interest in Vikings having been sparked by your books, Mr. Cornwell.  The article states (p. 48) that “The Vikings are raiders and marauders and they are traders and explorers and craftsmen.  Fundamentally they are travelers—and travelers with open minds.”
The article (p. 49) states (as you wrote, Mr. Cornwell) that “Vikings were fond of bestowing nasty nicknames on weapons, like Leg-Biter and Skull-Splitter.”
Of course, I don’t intend to write of all in the entire article here; however, perhaps your readers (or you?) may wish to read further; moreover, to visit the British Museum to see this focus on Vikings and their culture.  The article ends with “They lived on islands . . . and on islands you don’t get anywhere unless you row or sail. . . despite Vikings’ violent bent, they swore by the ancient verities:  the importance of family, generosity of spirit, a sense of fair play and personal honor.  Physical bravery was a given.  Most critical virtue:   self-control. . . they had morals—just not necessarily our present-day morals.”
I think perhaps even you, too, Mr. Cornwell, may enjoy this article—and a visit to the Museum?
ELFRETH

A

Thank you!  I’ve been amused by the revisionist history that tries to recast the Vikings as peace-loving and cuddly tourists, and I’m hugely looking forward to the BM’s Viking exhibition. I’ll read the article you mentioned, and thank you again.


Q

Dear Mr Cornwell.
having read some fifteen of your novels, I am totally mesmerized by the general accuracy of your accounts which,I regularly check on internet (understanding that these are historic "novels" with built-in characters and events
I would love to see you write a book about the Spanish conquistadores , their invasion of the South American continent and almost literal extermination of the Incas amongst others.
I thank you for enriching my knowledge of history whilst entertaining me
Thorsten


Q

During the last two weeks I have ravenously devoured the entire Saxon series. I must say I haven't been that enamored of a series in quite some time. Wonderful writing, superb characters. I cannot wait for the next book. Thank you :)
Lisa Rayborn


Q

bring starback back.
Jim

 

Dear Bernard,
Have just finished re-reading (5th or 6th time) 'The Bloody Ground' and, as always, I am left with the feeling that there are a few loose ends which really do need tying off. The main one, of course, is when (and how) is Billy Blythe going to get his come-uppance?
I mean, you do such a wonderful job creating your scoundrels that your readers inevitably develop an intense interest in knowing just how they eventually meet their end - at least, this reader does. For example, I experienced considerable (vicarious) satisfaction when fate finally caught up with Obediah Hakeswill even though I know you regret killing him off.
I realise, of course, that Starbuck and the American Civil War presents a vast canvas and it is unlikely (through your pen) that we will ever see Starbuck make it to 1865. But please, one more campaign, Gettysburg perhaps. Seems a fitting place for the dastardly Blythe to meet his end.
Regards,
Mike

 

Dear Mr. Cornwell,
I know you do not know when the next Starbuck book will be published (or even written), but do you think you could give your readers at least two months notice of publication as I for one will have to re-read all four of them again. I find, as with most people, that as I get older my memory is not quite as good as it was.
I have read and enjoyed most of your books but please please let us have another Starbuck soon.

Yours sincerely
Tony Riley

A

I think you would get a least a two month notice.


Q

Dear Mr Cornwell
I have read, I think, all your books with great pleasure and have just finished The Pagan Lord.
Could I just suggest, tactfully, that it is probably time to bring Uhtred’s story to its conclusion?
Looking forward to the next one.
Best regards,
Tim Levingston


Q

The last  few days have been amazing for the traits in some of the heroic characters you have created have suddenly burst to the surface of my awareness. Even though I am an aging female I am beginning to feel the stirrings of  a strength that I know to be quite masculine. I must admit that some part of me has always been aware of this inner masculinity but I have never owned it before because I felt ashamed of such stirrings, but now the authority within your writing has acted as some type of release which has enabled me to accept this hidden part of me. This is me....this is who I am....but also I am a mother, a grandmother! A sensitive caring female – all in the same body -  isn't this remarkable?  These soft, caring attitudes are in some of your heroes and I feel this a vital aspect of your writing for you have managed to bring to life a soldier who is both tender and loving while being fiercely courageous. He loves, and he kills. This does not fit within the stereo type of
present day behaviour; our identities, our fixed roles, our politically correct behaviour are all conditioned responses, taught to us from childhood.
It is not the killing that I admire – in fact I still loathe the sight and sound of battle -  it is the essence of a man who will face all kinds of abominations because of his ethical courage and his sense honour. This is the essence that I am responding to. My feelings as I think about your fictitious heroes are quite ambiguous for they are not the normal romantic dreams of an infatuated female, they are not lusting for him but lusting to be him. It is as if your books have awakened a sleeping part of me....not able to show its face until I understood  the magnitude of the layering within in the human psyche. Although delightfully addictive, it is adding to my confusion about human sexuality and the close association with reincarnation and the mystical life that shimmers just below the surface of this reality. If we live many lives then I have a memory of being a Roman Centurion in the 1st century England. Seems much of what is within each of us is hidden from the conscious
mind so revelations about other dream-lives existing behind this life are exciting. If there are missing pieces within me, then this must be so for everybody?
Later. The timing is impeccable, for last night as I was grappling with this confused though delightful  identity crisis, I watched  Australian Story on the ABC (Australian TV). It gave an account of a soldier who has also been a writer and a politician but who now works as an aid to the head of the Military in Canberra. He was courageous and intelligent, wielding a great deal of power, yet he was unhappy in his male body so eventually he changed - and showing the same courage - he has become a woman - a women who now feels very happy within this new identity. Maybe this Australian is also balancing out his/her mystical life in this extremely physical way? Maybe your ability capture the essential nature of these courageous men of honour also stems from past memory? This amazing story has come to me just as I am beginning to taste some type of masculine expression but the synchronisity is not really a surprise for it often happens, but  it has made my personal insights even more
confused. His experience is not mine, for I have no want or desire to change gender. This is why the concept of androgyny comes to mind. Maybe it is what we are all seeking, a balance within between gender duality?
I see that we were born in the same era.  I was born in 1938 in Australia, far from the battles that you write about, but of course the diabolical history laying in our records is waiting to be told.
I am also a writer, although words seems to have dried up over the past few years and I offer thanks for your work.
Lyn Willmott

A

Thank you for that interesting and thought-provoking message!  Seems to me your words as a writer must be coming back.


Q

Regarding 'The Fort'

Mr. Cornwell,
Brilliant. It is nothing short of amazing that this little footnote to American history has not been covered before. The incompetence of Saltonstall and arrogance of Revere was truly astonishing.
I spent a July in Castine and visited Ft George but did not truly appreciate the history behind it. And, in July, the fog came in every day virtually obscuring the Waldo-Hancock Bridge.
I am a history buff and real fan of all your novels and eagerly await the next.
I also just finished The Pagan Lord and hope the next one in sequence comes soon.
Best Regards,
Dennis Schroeder


Q

Dear Mr Cornwell,
Having read more than 30 of your books, I think all but the last two and one or two of the "Thrillers", I believe the main underlying theme is to demystify religion while describing at the same time historical-cultural aspects of the UK across time. Your very generous spirit makes the books imminently readable. Your historical accounts make the times learnable. Your unending action makes the books exciting. But most of all your blending of religion as an everyday part of life makes the stories profound. The books were perhaps the best part of my last 8 years of living in Cardiff, Wales, having now returned closer to my birthplace in the US Midwest as an Economics professor.

Max Gillman