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Sharpe's Escape Hardcover – Mar 29 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
"So Sharpe and Harper will march again." Thus ended Sharpe's Havoc, the previous (19th) volume in Cornwell's series, and Sharpe aficionados will rejoice that the prophecy has been fulfilled. In September of 1810, just before repulsing the French army on the bare slopes of Bussaco ridge in central Portugal, Captain Sharpe is forced to take Lieutenant Slingsby, Colonel Lawford's arrogant, heavy-drinking brother-in-law, under his wing. Sharpe then stumbles into a confrontation with Ferragus, the malevolent brother of their treacherous Portuguese ally, Major Ferreira, whom he catches illegally hoarding flour to sell to the enemy. Sharpe is soon ambushed by the cowardly Ferragus and barely escapes with his life. The much abused captain is further humiliated when, despite Slingsby's poor performance at Bussaco, Lawford puts him in charge of the troops, then has the effrontery to reprimand Sharpe for refusing to apologize for insulting the fool. When the French find a way to flank them, the British retreat through Coimbra, where Sharpe and Harper, Sharpe's right-hand man, find themselves lured into a trap. Sharpe's old friend, Portuguese captain Vicente, and a young English governess come to Sharpe's rescue just in time for Sharpe to save his battalion, exacting retribution on his enemies in a resoundingly satisfactory denouement. With fully fleshed-out characters and keen human insight, Cornwell just keeps getting better. His faithful will be left hoping Sharpe goes on forever.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
Captain Richard Sharpe, the inveterate self-made British soldier, returns in another thrilling adventure set during the Napoleonic Wars. As usual, Sharpe, a former private, is less than prudent when he thumbs his nose at authority to protect his beloved company from the unskilled officer he is assigned to train. Stationed in Portugal during the French invasion of 1810, Sharpe and his men fight valiantly to prevent further incursions by the despised "Frogs." In addition to repelling the enemy, Richard must also do battle with the dangerously underqualified Lieutenant Cornelius Slingsby, a newly minted officer protected by a convoluted kinship to Sharpe's commanding officer, Colonel Lawson. After gallantly prevailing on the treacherous ridge of Bussaco, Sharpe is busted down to quartermaster for refusing to apologize for insulting the incompetent Slingsby during the height of the conflict. But eventually the wily Sharpe saves his troops from certain annihilation under the command of the incompetent and inebriated Slingsby. The boffo battle scenes will appeal to an audience primed for epic military history by the success of the film version of Patrick O'Brian's Master and Commander (1969). Margaret Flanagan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
So what's it all about? Wellington continues to try to hold Portugal against the French. Napoleon has sent Marshal Massena with a huge force to drive the British and Portuguese off the peninsula. Wellington has well-prepared defenses waiting in front of Lisbon, but he wants to starve the French army as much as possible so that attrition will make the conflict short. The French steal food rather than buy it, and Wellington leads a scorched earth program.
As the book opens, Sharpe is grumpy. He's been called back after a week rather than the month's leave his was promised and Colonel Lawford has stuck him with a lieutenant he cannot stand, Slingsby. Sharpe doesn't see how any good can come of all this.
Sharpe is sent to destroy a signaling tower so that the French won't be able to use it. In the process, he discovers the Portuguese brothers, Major Ferreira and Ferragus, preparing to sell a lot of flour to the French.Read more ›
As we've come to know Sharpe has a bit of trouble with authority, especially when he sees the incompetence of some of his so-called superiors. It is now 1810; Napoleon wants Portugal and the British beaten into retreat.
Facing Napoleon's largest army is one thing but Sharpe is also besieged from within, losing his command to an inept British officer with very proper family connections. Further, two cowardly, conniving Portugese brothers plan to become friends with the French in the hopes of profiting should Portugal fall to France.
When Sharpe steps in to foil their plan he puts his life on the line. Ferragus, the cruelest of the brothers, devises a trap to kill Sharpe.
Those with a love for military adventure and over the top battles will not want to miss a word of "Sharpe's Escape."
- Gail Cooke
Set in 1810 in Portugal the hero stumbles onto the devious plans of traitors and foils them. Thus he becomes the target for revenge. Not to fear Sharpe is here. He then saves the day and a couple of girls from rape and magnanimously gives the loot to his gal; which I found to be clever.
I liked the scene where they traversed a sewer and had to refrain from saying the `S' word for fear of offending a lady or lady want-to-be. The book is fast paced and entertaining. It will keep you reading. Seventeen gun salute for Sharpe's Escape.
Most recent customer reviews
Bernard Cornwell's historical fiction series of the adventures of Richard Sharpe is excellent.
This audio book of one novel of that series, Sharpe's Escape, is really... Read more