Times+ book club: Bernard Cornwell

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Bernard Cornwell discusses the return of his iconic hero, Richard Sharpe, in his latest novel Sharpe's Assassin, along with his wider body of work with Antonia Senior, book critic for The Times.

If any man can do the impossible it's Richard Sharpe... Lieutenant-Colonel Sharpe is a man with a reputation. Born in the gutter, raised a foundling, he joined the army twenty-one years ago, and it’s been his home ever since. He’s a loose cannon, but his unconventional methods make him a valuable weapon.

So when, the dust still settling after the Battle of Waterloo, the Duke of Wellington needs a favour, he turns to Sharpe. For Wellington knows that the end of one war is only the beginning of another. Napoleon's army may be defeated, but another enemy lies waiting in the shadows – a secretive group of fanatical revolutionaries hell-bent on revenge. 

Sharpe is dispatched to a new battleground: the maze of Paris streets where lines blur between friend and foe. And in search of a spy, he will have to defeat a lethal assassin determined to kill his target or die trying...

Bernard Cornwell is a consummate researcher whose novels are loved for their blend of gripping action and meticulous attention to historical details. He is the author of over 50 novels published in 30 countries and in 28 languages and has sold over 20 million books around the world. Bernard was born in London, raised in Essex and worked for the BBC for eleven years before meeting Judy, his American wife. Denied an American work permit he wrote a novel instead and has been writing ever since. He and Judy divide their time between Cape Cod and Charleston, South Carolina. 

Antonia Senior is a writer and journalist. She has written three novels, two set during the English Civil War and one in 12th-century Scotland. She has twice been the chair of judges for the Historical Writers’ Association’s Gold Crown Awards for the best historical fiction books of the year 

This event was originally broadcast on Thursday, November 4.

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