Your Questions

Q

Hi,

There’s a chance that like yourself I’m a descendant if Bamburgh, although from a little later.

My surname is Forster, the same as the governors from 1191 when Sir John Forster was given that title, and my Grandfather was from Newcastle, not far away. I wondered if your research had turned anything up?

Kind regards

Kevin Forster

A

I’m afraid not – my family lost the fortress in 1016 and I’ve never bothered to look beyond that date!

 


Q

Bernard

When is the next series on Netflix?

Ruth Salazar

A

Too early to say....but there will be a 4th season!


Q

I know previously in one of the books you gave the definition of the words and symbols that Has to do with fate of the gods. What was the definition?

Mike Glossop

A

I think you may be referring to  "Wyrd bið ful aræd," which translates to  "Fate is inexorable."

It's English!  But the English spoken in Uhtred's time, which these days we call Old English.  But it is still English.  The quotation is from an Old English poem, 'The Wanderer'.  It is usually translated as 'fate is relentless', but I prefer inexorable.


Q

Hi Mr. Cornwell,

I first learned on the book series after watching "The Last Kingdom " on TV. I'm 66 and never read an entire book in my life, even in School i only read cliff notes, but the TV show lead me to your book series,which was fascinating,  I just finished the entire series and i'm left wanting for more. I know your writing one now but can you give an estimated time of release?

Thank you for the hours of enjoyable reading.

Norman M Sundheim

A

With any luck the book will be published in October.


Q

Dear Mr. Bernard Cornwell,

my name is Rosa , I do not read fantasy books but on Italian television I saw “The Last Kingdom”. In a scene (the one of yesterday) Uhtred together with the pagan magician Queen Iseult, they take the son of King Alfred, and during the night with the "new moon" they make a ritual putting the child in a mud grave, the morning after the son the king is safe but Queen Isetul cries because another child died in his place. (It is called "alchemical exchange" in black magic). I am 52 years old, my life has been a long failure, everything has gone wrong since I was born, and I have not succeeded in anything. I come from a family of unhappy and quarrelsome people for futile reasons. I began to realize that in my life there was something strange since I was 33 years old. I was able to compose all the pieces of the puzzle (so I thought) around the age of 47. I secretly burned my mother's wedding kit in pure Italian linen with bobbin embroidery, and I threw between 150 and 200 maligned items in my house. In this dismal story that arises from a family curse, I realized, about 5 years ago, that there had been an important passage linked to the death of my brother. A child born June 18, 1962 and died June 29 (day of St. Paul) in 1962. In his place, I discovered over the years, lives a certain "Paul" born March 15, 1962, but of poor health. The women who did the ritual are the grandmothers of Paolo (two sorceresses of my small country, here in Sicily, born, respectively, in 1888 and 1905, but death after my birth).

I discovered these things not only by making various connections, and noting that when I burned objects (at night in the fields) my ears were ringing, I felt sick, my head was spinning and I felt like something bad was coming off of me , but also by consulting cartomancy. But the fortune tellers, as well as betraying and taking advantage of me, were limited to telling me only the response of the tarot. No one has ever told me how exactly these things work. So, Mr. Cornwell, could you please tell me where did you read about that exchange ritual of a child's life for another that you describe so well in your novel? Are there ancient documents describing these rites in the early Middle Ages? Where can I document myself?

Best regards,

Rosa

A

Yours is an extraordinary story!! I wish I could send you a sensible answer, but I must confess that I cannot remember any source for that scene with Iseult and the baby Edward. Did I make it up?  It’s quite possible, but I suspect I read something like it long long ago and it simply stayed in my memory. It’s possible that I read it when I was researching the stories of Arthur and spent a lot of time reading about Celtic mysteries and beliefs. I so wish I could help you, but alas! Maybe someone reading your story and this answer can be helpful?

 


Q

Thank you for your incredible stories. I have so enjoy reading them for the second and third time, no really. I just wish I had learned of your work years ago. I travel for a leaving and I’m away from my family for more than half of the year. Your work helps keep my home sickness at bay.

I retired from the US Navy 10 years ago and I really relate to your characters and their plight. Thank you again for your awesome books!

If I could ask you but one question? Have you ever read The Devils Guard? If not I’m sure you would enjoy it.

Thank you for your time,

SOCS ret. Rodney Crocker

A

I have not, though I know the book by reputation. Years ago I knew a man who fought with the French Foreign Legion in Vietnam and he told me that  many of his fellow soldiers were ex-Waffen-SS – so is The Devil’s Guard a true story or just fiction? I don’t know. I suppose I should read it!  Thank you.

 


Q

Dear Bernard

You've often been asked if you would get back to Starbuck. My question is a little bit different, mine is that if you did because of the time lapse since the last book (23 years !)  would you skip straight to the end and the Appamotax campaign or would you carry on from Fredericksburg ?

While i cant speak for anyone else, I don't think I'm out of line in saying that I think you get asked a lot about Starbuck because there are a lot of loose threads E.G Billy Blythe/ whether Starbuck will get back with Sally or not/ Starbuck finding out about Delaney being a spy and what he did to Sally - he literally murdered the wrong guy over something Delaney did ie having Sally kidnapped and raped, that's a biggie/ Falcouner finding out about his sons murder/ Pecker Bird encountering the new improved Swnyard.

Even if it was just a short story and you never mentioned Starbuck again , just something to close it off. Hell it doesn't have to even be that just a few bullet points posted on here saying what was gonna happen. But please don't leave us hanging.

Regards

Geraint

A

I'm not sure there will be another – but I’ve been proven wrong before. I must do something when I finish Uhtred’s saga, so maybe?  Anyway, no promises....but I’ll stick to maybe....

 


Q

Hello Bernard,

Can I start by saying that you are my favourite author and I have all the sharpe novels in many editions as well as the DVDs plus many more of your titles. I've recently started listening to The Last Kingdom on audible and was so happy to find another of your stories which I am addicted to and therefore can't put down. I was alarmed to learn that the narrator had changed and is no longer 'Jonathan Keeble' who did such a fantastic job. Jonathan helped bring your characters to life much in the same way as Sean Bean and Rupert Farley have done with the Sharpe series so I can't get my head around the cast swap.

I was just wondering if you were aware of the situation, I'm sure it might be out of your control. Anyway keep up the great work, i'll be reverting to the trusty tangible version of The Burning Land.

Regards and many thanks for all the fantastic stories!

Andy

A

I have no involvement in the audio books - or choice of narrator - but perhaps Mr. Keeble was not available?  I am glad to know you enjoy my books!


Q

Since Uhtred is Northumbrian, and i still love all maters concerning Anglo-Saxon period, i need to ask you this:

Why did Northmen choose Northumbria as their primary target in the beginning of so-called Viking Age? Northumbria was not nearly as rich or developed as southern Saxon kingdoms. Plus, Scots and Picts were raiding those parts, so it was not a peaceful place even without Northmen. Is it possible that Danes chose Northumbria because, as some historians claim, there was already a significant number of Scandinavian settlers there, before the invasions began? Plus, Northumbria was well known for remaining staunchly pagan for a long time, in spite of very developed church and monastic life. Could it be that all this would have made that part of England more “susceptible” to Danes? Therefore, they might have seen it as a great base for further conquest.

Once again, thank you for your time and patience!

Miroslav Subašić

A

To be honest, I don’t know if there was a significant Scandinavian settlement there before the 880’s, but I suspect it was an easier region to conquer than those further south where the better farmland meant a greater density of population, and thus more resistance – though plainly some places, like Bebbanburg, successfully resisted the Danish conquest (though I suspect there was a good deal of collaboration, which I’ve ignored). It’s significant that the Danelaw spreads (rather obviously) from Britain’s east coast . . . if you’re emigrating in open boats across the North Sea then the shorter the voyage the better


Q

I have been reading "Sharpe's Escape" In it, a Rifleman Dodd goes missing in action. C.S. Forester wrote a story about a Rifleman Dodd (in Spain) who gets separated from his unit and fights on until he can rejoin. Are they about the same Dodd?

Eugene Souberman

A

I loved the Hornblower books as a kid and so yes, it's not just a coincidence but more of a tribute to C.S. Forester.