Hello Mr. Cornwell,
I have written to you before and have sent my copies to you be signed in the past, even inviting you to my high school graduation nearly 20 years ago (you replied and sent a signed paperback of Heretic which meant the world). I am writing to you today to simply say thank you for your books because they quite literally changed my life.
The first of your books I picked up was Rebel in 1999 when I was in the sixth grade. At the time I was what you may call a die hard southern Civil War advocate, so much so that my entire life revolved around the subject. I continued the Starbuck books through my 7th grade year and after The Bloody Ground, I decided to try Sharpe. It is for that, that I am truly grateful to you. Through Sharpe my horizons broadened and my eyes were opened to the world of history outside of simply the American Civil War.
Since I have read nearly all of your works ( minus the thrillers, maybe on day eh?). I recently returned to Starbuck since I had not read them in over 20 years and they are still fantastic! It would be wonderful to see Starbuck back in action, although with the current atmosphere in the US, I wonder if one can still even write novels from a Confederate POV anymore?
Regardless, the entire reason for this long-winded message is a friend asked me recently "what got you into being an ancient coin dealer?" (I should mention that I am a dealer in Ancient Roman coins)... They were a bit taken aback when I simply said "Bernard Cornwell". I left it at that with my friend, who is still confused by my answer. While I know you do not write anything about Rome, aside from mentions in the Arthur books, I know that if I had not picked up Rebel back in the winter of 1999 and moved from there to Sharpe, I would not be where I am today.
So I thank you from the depths of my soul for simply being you and unknowingly changing the trajectory of my life with your written word.
Kindest regards and best wishes,