Your Questions

Q

Dear Mr Cornwell, I have just finished reading Heretic and I must say it was absolutely brilliant! The ending was fabulous and I can honestly say that I felt sad when Sir Guillaume died - he was my favourite character. Just a couple of questions: When Thomas killed Guy - he put four arrows in his body - one for Eleanor, one for Planchard, one for his father and another for himself - why did you miss out Father Hobbe? Are you planning on doing another story starring Thomas? Thanks for the excellent novels, Lewis Young

A

I guess he didn't think of it at the time! Meaning I didn't. Sorry. I'm not planning another Thomas of Hookton story at this time.


Q

Any chance of a few more stories about Sandman? I relly enjoyed Gallows Thief and would like to read more. Michael White

A

It's a possiblity, but I don't know when.


Q

Hello. Firstly let me once more thank for your great books!!!!!!!!! I am right now reading Sharpe's Sword and I just wondered how many of the Sharpe characters were purely fiction? Also I have not been able to find any info on the Southe Essex!!!!!! HOW COME?! Furhter more I would like to comment on the fact that the 95th are mentioned in the Hornblower series as a light foot regiment of redcoats under Major Sir Paul Edrington - which is correct? The mention in Hornblower or that of the Sharpe series????!!!! Best regards Christopher

A

The 95th were always Greenjackets! The real characters? I think I tell you that in the Historical Note at the end of the book, but if there are any characters you're uuncertain about, do write again and ask specifically. Why can you find nothing about the South Essex? because I made them up - I needed a regiment that I could move around to my heart's content - not a real regiment which would trap my story in real history.


Q

Dear Bernard, to do original, I want to congratulate you. I just finish the Warlord trilogy and I am speechless, that so FANTASTIC!. Sure, I read it in French, so I assume it was not completely as good as in English, but it was still great!!! I start to think to read it in English now& I really enjoy the way you saw and described the story and the way you did not follow the standard story& I got questions for you (quite a lot, I am sorry for you&). The way you describe battles sounds like you did some research. Is that right? Did you make a lot of research before writing books like that? Could you let me know where you found your major data? Is the way they turn their shields to explain they are not coming for war historically true? Are all those types of details historically true as well. (Sorry for my small knowledge on the subject&). Like a lot of persons I am fascinated by Arthur story but I know it was probably not real. As you describe the way Igraine might have change the story to make it better, the real story might have been completely different. That is why I would like to know if you found some other historical information about Arthur that you did not describe at the end of the trilogy? If yes, could you let me know what are they (references) to enhance my small knowledge of the subject? I apologize for my bad English. I hope you could understand me& Thank in advance for your answer and thousands of thousands thanks for your stories. I will dream of them for a long time& Emeline

A

Merci beaucoup for a lovely message! Yes, I did a lot of research, but there are not many sources saying what it was like to stand in a shield-wall - horrid, I should think - so much of it is imagination. The detail about turning the shield upside down as a sign of truce came from a very old Welsh poem (I forget which one) so is probably true. Most of my sources are in the end-notes - I did use a lot of very old Welsh texts which I didn't mention - The Laws of Hywel Dda, the poems of Iolo Goch, Y Gododdin, and others - these are available in English translations (there's a wonderful series, The Welsh Classics, published by the Gomer Press), but I don't know of any translations into French. I took lots of details from those books, and from collections of old folklore - the Oxford Dictionary of Superstitions, edited by Iona Opie and Moira Tatem is very good on that. Thanks again.


Q

Dear Mr. Cornwell, I am a 16 year old who has been enthralled by your books for 3 years and struggle immensely to put one down when I am in the middle of one. I just finished reading Vagabond (having finished all of the currently available Sharpe books) and cannot wait to get my hands on Heretic. My first question is a Sharpe one: was there ever a book about the film that took place between Sharpe's Revenge and Sharpe's Waterloo called Sharpe's Justice (where he finds his brother back in England)? Was that your idea? And my second question is a Grail Quest one: How long was Father Ralph in Hookton from when he was tortured to when Guy Vexille came and could the villagers of Hookton not realize that Ralph was indeed from Astarac based on his accent? Jamie Neugebauer

A

If I remember rightly he was there about eight years? I'd have to reread the first book to check, but it's about that. They wouldn't tell anything from his accent! They couldn't understand people from the next county, let alone realise a French accent! Besides - Father Ralph was essentially English. There is no 'Sharpe's Justice' book - it was a screenplay only and I was not involved in writing it.


Q

Dear Mr. Cornwell, Just finished Heretic.....what can I say that hasn't already been said, a great read. I was interested in your thoughts about Dorset, my GG G/father was born in Beaminster Dorset in 1828. He was with the 76th regt. for 22yrs. culminating in Colour Sgt. I visited a book site today that said your real name is Bernard Wiggins, is that true? I hope you don't mind a personal question. Rgds Robert Marsh

A

I was born Bernard Cornwell - and that's the name on my first birth certificate, but then I was adopted into the Wiggins family, so received a substitute birth certificate, and last year I changed my name back to the original (because I prefer it). Complicated? Ah well. I wish it were a Dorset name, but I don't think it is.


Q

I'm confused about "Mission" & "Justice." I'm an historical novel lover and recently discovered your fantastic writings. Right now I'm reading all of the Sharp's books and then watching the DVD versions. However, I can't find the book versions of "Mission" and "Justice." Were they screenplays only? Thanks Joe

A

Yes, 'Mission' and 'Justice' were screenplays only - no books.


Q

Dear Mr.Cornwell, Firstly I'd like to say I am absolutely in love with your work, and I've read your Winter King series so much that the covers are now falling off the books. At the moment I am a twelfth grade student doing a ISP on Historical Fiction and I've chosen your Winter King series to be my example. I'd really like to know your opinion on how the fictionalization of history helps the readers understand the realities i.e. emotions, of the time period. I'm not asking you as a source for my paper, as it is mostly written at this point, but out of curiosity because you happen to be my favourite author. Thank you very much for your time. Stacey McDonald

A

Perhaps by making it more real? I'm not saying that 'real' (i.e. non-fictional) history is not real, but historians cannot go beyond the evidence. They can suggest things, but they always have to stick to hard, cold facts, and as much of history lacks hard, cold facts there are gaps. Novelists can fill those gaps and, perhaps, by making the past very vivid and immediate help folk understand what it was like to live back then. But it's no replacement for the real thing. An historical novelist is not, or should not be, a history teacher - he or she should be a storyteller. But if the books bring history alive then that ain't a bad thing.


Q

Dear Mr Cornwell I'm a huge fan of your books. My favourite books were the Warlord chronicles. I have one questions I would like to get answered 1)it seems in the book your Britain is a place where "day by day it (treasure hoard) shrinks and we don't know how to stop it or make more". But is there a possibly that Arthur (or somone like him) could've called for the Romans for help? thus with the Roman help created a peaceful and orderly land that your Arthur so longed for?- justin

A

The Romans did not leave Britain out of kindness - this was not a handing over of power to the colonised - they left because they had to, because Rome itself was under siege from barbarians, so they were in no position to help even if they'd wanted to, and if they had then you can be sure that they would not have let the British kings go on ruling - it would have been back to imperialism. So no help there!


Q

Any chance that there will be a sequel to Gallows Thief? If not, is there any other new book in the works (apart from the Sharpe series)? Thanks and regards: JW

hello! Mr. Cornwell, I have been a huge fanand avid reader of your books since I was only 11. I was wondering what you plan to write on after the next Sharpe comes out. More Starbucks? More Rider Sandman? More anything because your books are all magnificent. Thank you for your time, Richard Mock

A

Something new. All to be revealed in good time (meaning when I'm confident I can make it work)