Bulletin Board

Q

Dear Bernard Cornwell,

I'm a middle-aged, middle-class, peaceful and pacifistic midwife, yet for reasons unknown I like to read about fights and battles in times long gone by. Your tales are gripping, your characters complex and it's just great that there are so many sequels. That I learn lots about history, too is an additional benefit and pleasure. After the Last Kingdom series I'm now into the Sharpe books - and that's where I just stumbled across an anachronism:

I know how well you research your locations and the detailed descriptions of the sites are what makes them so easy to "see" in the imagination. However, sometimes what is there now hasn't always been there: in Sharpe's battle, Sharpe and Father Sarsfield stroll around the San Isidro Fort and "the skirts of the priest's soutane were wet from the ragweed and grass that grew inside the fort". I happen to know that the ragweed is a despised neophyte in Europe. It was introduced by trade ships from North America in the 1860s and probably further distributed across the countries during the World Wars through transporting hay for the armies` horses. It only occurred sporadically until the 1990s, when it started to thrive due to climate change. So I'm sorry to say: ragweed may have many faults, but it was not responsible for Father Sarsfield's damp soutane ;-) I'm looking forward to many more adventures of Sharpe and Harper (why doesn't ever anybody notice that together they are "sharper"?)

All the best to you,

kind regards,

Sarah Vogt, Switzerland

A

Thank you


Q

Mr. Cornwell,

I was educated as a professional historian, and later as an attorney, I left the law and the academic life many years ago.  I still read history for at least several hours per day.  When one of your books comes out, I place a bookmark in the book I am reading, and set it aside.  I immediately take up your book, and usually read it in a couple of marathon sessions, while neglecting any pending responsibilities.  I have almost every volume of your books in hardcover, and have read most of them at least three times.  Thank you for the many years of reading pleasure.

I rarely comment on the anything, but I have just completed Waterloo.   Bravo!

Morrical


Q

Dear Bernard

If you've not read it, I can recommend Stopping Napoleon by Tom Pocock on the War Post Trafalgar in the Mediterranean. There's some fascinating battles such as Murat v Hudson Lowe on Capri as well as the Naval Battle of Lissa which secured the Adriatic for the British and the 1807 Egypt Expedition which was a disaster and less well remembered by British Historians for Good reason.  Anyway it's worth a read if you've not read it

Geraint


Q

Hi,

I wanted to reach out and thank you so much for your wonderful stories. I read Agincourt first and loved it so much. I am on Sword Song of the Saxon tales. I am so grateful to have found you and to have all of your books to look forward to. I will read every one. Thanks so much for sharing your brilliance with us all.

Wyrd bið ful āræd

 

~ Leslie Greenberg


Q

Dear Mr. Cornwell,

While I like to be somewhat knowledgeable about the past, I am not a fan of non-fiction historical texts, though I enjoy many an historical novel.  I have recently been reading a number of books set in 1800’s England, and the Napoleonic wars, and Waterloo in particular, are often referenced and play a major part in the lives and development of the various characters. So I decided I needed to read about Waterloo. I did a search through my local library, and your book, Waterloo, was the only one that came up, so I requested it.

I want to thank you for writing such a riveting story of those battle days! I am only on Chapter 5, but it has been a fascinating read so far, and I look forward to finishing it. It is so well written, and the many quotes are absolutely wonderful. Thank you for doing so much research, for writing this book, and for making it such a good read!

Sincerely,

Cassy



Q

Mr. Cornwell-

good day sir. I’m in the middle of reading your Sharp series (thanks to your interview with Newt Gingrich) and came across a real life SGT Hakeswill on tv!  Take a look at Bill Burr live at red rocks on Netflix, he is how I imagine him looking and quite funny as a bonus.  Love the books!

Jeff


Q

No response necessary, I just wanted to tell you how much I love your books. I get them in audio format, so that I can listen while I work, and many of your books I have listened to multiple times. I also recommend them to everybody I know.

Keep up the good work!

Liz Nash



Q

Dear Mr Cornwell.

I have no doubt you receive thousands of messages like this but this is the first letter of appreciation I've written to an author.

I wanted simply to thank you for the many hours of enjoyment your books have given me.

I have always enjoyed historical novels (The Flashman series brought  me great joy)  but for some reason I only recently began to read Sharpe and have quickly devoured every one! That , in turn, lead me to the Grail Quest series,  Last Kingdom  and the Starbuck Chronicles.

How someone can develop such a breadth of historical knowledge and turn it into such great story telling is , to my mind, simply astonishing.

What I really love is the fact that I have come to learn so much about historical events where my knowledge was rusty to say the least. You have prompted me to research conflicts from Salamanca to Crecy to Bull Run.

I have just completed Sharpe's Assassin and am currently dealing with the sense of loss I always feel after finishing one of your books !

Once again, many thanks for all you have written.

Sincerely,

Bob Walker