Book Review – Sharpe’s Tiger (1997)

I have been anxious to read the Sharpe series for a while now. My first exposure to Bernard Cornwell was through his take on the King Arthur myth with his “Warlord Chronicles” series which I devoured with a fervor I hadn’t had for a series in quite some time. Loving his take on the medieval time period I jumped into the “Saxon Tales” next and having finished the books in that series I was ready to tackle Sharpe.

I had heard many good things about certain books in the series and I went in with high hopes. I was not disappointed. Sharpe’s Tiger is a damn fine read with a lead character who comes off as equally interesting as any Cornwell has ever written and there’s no wonder that he spawned around 20 full length novels. Sharpe is the sort of character that Cornwell excels at writing, a rogue who is deeply flawed as a human being but at the same time is eminently likable. You may sometimes question his motives or his actions but you can empathize with him and you find yourself absorbed into his world.

The story itself is exciting and well written, with Sharpe undertaking a life and death mission of subterfuge and infiltrating the ranks of a foreign despot. This is a true military thriller and though the time period and region where it takes place is not one where I am very well versed I was engrossed and taken in immediately. Cornwell does a great job building a world and populating it with characters that bring that era of history to life just as he has done with his medieval epics.

I cannot wait to start on the next installment. I’m glad there are a great many volumes for me to enjoy.


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