Sharpe’s Assassin

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Pub Date 30 Sep 2021 | Archive Date 1 Apr 2022



The global bestseller Bernard Cornwell returns with his iconic hero, Richard Sharpe.

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 . . .

SHARPE’S ASSASSIN is the brand new novel in the bestselling historical series that has sold over 20 million copies worldwide.


The global bestseller Bernard Cornwell returns with his iconic hero, Richard Sharpe.

If any man can do the impossible it's Richard Sharpe...

Available Editions

ISBN 9780008184032
PRICE £5.99 (GBP)

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Average rating from 13 members

Featured Reviews

Oh what a joy and a treat this was. Finally, Sharpe and Harper are back!

Picking up from where Sharpe’s Waterloo finishes, Cornwell throws Sharpe into a classic adventure in and around the streets of Paris. Its just Sharpe and Bernard Cornwell at their very best.

The plot is, as you would expect, extremely fast paced. With a host of familiar old faces, and some interesting new ones thrown in, Sharpe’s Assassin was exactly what I wanted it to be.

I’ve missed Harper’s jovial Irish wit, and Sharpe’s stubborn grumpiness. I’ve missed the way I smile from page to page when I read Richard Sharpe’s adventures. I wouldn’t say no to another Sharpe book next year, not by a long way.

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Richard Sharpe is back!

It's been a while, but Richard Sharpe is back, and it's like he never left. "Sharpe's Assassin" is pure, classic Sharpe and fans will not be disappointed. Our favourite characters are all back, with an old nemesis, a new enemy, and some new friends all thrown together in the aftermath of the famous battle.

The book picks up directly after the events of "Sharpe's Waterloo", with Lieutenant-Colonel Sharpe and Harper sadly burying Dan Hagman. But they're not even done before Wellington sends Sharpe to Paris to help retrieve some prisoners vital to the cause. Napoleon might be down but he and his supporters are not out.

What follows is a tale that blends seamlessly with the saga fans love. The South Essex, as was, continues to follow Sharpe, even as he descends into the murky world of spies and conspiracies. Patrick Harper remains the true and strong friend that Sharpe depends on, as he struggles with the demands of a war he thought he was done with, and longs to return with his family to Normandy. Wellington remains the brusque, dour man we love, although his respect for Sharpe perhaps shines through a bit more now.

We have all the components of a fine Sharpe story - an impregnable citadel to breach, wrongs to right, battles we simply cannot win, but do, and a baddie, who turns out to be a decent guy. Through the clever use of conversation and musings, we even get a potted history of Sharpe's life so far, for the benefit of new readers. Cornwell's research is as spot-on as usual, and he's careful to separate fact from fiction in the afterword, for perfectionists.

Bernard Cornwell might well frown, but I simple cannot read a Sharpe novel now without hearing the voices of Sean Bean and Daragh O'Malley as Harper, and it adds an extra element to my enjoyment. No apologies.

"Sharpe's Assassin" is what fans old and new have been waiting for, and I can't recommend it highly enough. Form line and get stuck in!

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Hurrah! Sharpe is back!

It has been awhile and this book starts immediately after the Battle of Waterloo.

Sharpe and Harper are in fine form, with plenty of action to satisfy Sharpe fans. I was slightly worried this may have been a book to far for the Sharpe series, especially after such a long time since the last one. But no such worries as Bernard Cornwell knows how to write fast paced and enjoyable historical fiction.

If you love the Sharpe series you'll love this latest installment. Those that are new to Sharpe are in for a treat too.

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After a long hiatus, Sharpe is back and in fighting form.

Despite the French defeat at Waterloo, Lieutenant-Colonel Sharpe’s war has not yet ended. Wellington’s orders send him to Paris, but first he must break out an imprisoned spy, whose information is key to discovering a group of revenge seeking revolutionaries, intent on assassinating the Duke. But Sharpe wants the war to be done and return to Normandy with Lucille and his son. To keep fighting a war that is already won seems senseless, but fighting is in Sharpe’s blood. From his childhood, right through Flanders, India, Portugal, Spain and France, he has clawed his way from the gutters into the ranks, and now he must find these assassins and fight a monster, or die trying.

Long-standing readers of the series will know exactly what to expect, and won’t be disappointed. Of course, Harper accompanies our rogue hero; I have thoroughly missed reading these two! I love their friendship and the banter between them. It was interesting to follow Sharpe around 19th century Paris, which is vividly brought to life by the historical research. Cornwell also writes brilliant villains, and they come in the guises of both the French enemy, and as an unwelcome character from Sharpe’s past. There are also the usual foppish characters on Sharpe’s side who he finds infuriating, and the common soldiers—his own troops—who he is immensely proud of. Plus, there is a touching opening where Sharpe and Harper say goodbye to a friend, and a bloody good rifleman.

Cornwell gives enough backstory to the series so far, but readers new to Sharpe might benefit from holding back reading this novel and go first to some of the earlier books. I recommend Sharpe’s Eagle, the first written, or Sharpe’s Tiger, the first in chronological order. Long-term fans of the books will have no trouble, and it is a welcome addition to the series, and I hope there is more to follow.

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Sharpe’s Fury in 2006 was, astonishingly, the previous Richard Sharpe book. What a delight to have him back after all these years.
This is set right in the aftermath of Waterloo (well worth reading that again before this, you don’t need to but it provides great context). Sharpe and his troops are burying their dead and coming to terms with Napoleon’s defeat. Expecting a rest they find the Duke of Wellington has further need of Sharpe’s unique skills. A nice touch that Wellington is very clear about Sharpe and how best to use him rather than looking down at him.
So Sharpe is spearheading the main army towards Paris, but has to break the journey for the “minor” impossible task of taking a castle and freeing an important prisoner. Once in Paris, he finds a very different mission and struggles to know who to trust in a city whose citizens have just lost a critical battle. And in Paris, there are danger around every corner, but then Sharpe has history as a street fighter….
The big question is whether the author has recaptured that special something after all these years, and fans will be delighted that he has. Sharpe is battle weary but we see plenty of reminders of him both as a character but an experienced and respected leader of men. Some nice glimpses and memories of previous characters along with reflection of the journey he and Pat Harper have been through.
Like all Sharpe novels it is a page turner and it was fantastic to have him back after all this time.

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An exceedingly jolly jape. Once I received this I basically sat down and read this. Mumbling at anyone with the temerity to interrupt me.

I loved Sharpe the first time round (all 20 plus rounds come to think of it) and here Sharpe is back, with a son in tow and his delicious aristocrat partner. What is very clever in this novel is the way Bernard Cornwell manages to introduce enough of the back story into the novel without irritating you if you've read the series. I believe he does this so well you could read this as a stand alone novel and still enjoy it.

It's interesting that whilst there is an over arching story line about the plot to assassinate Wellington, it equally well could have been written as three stand alone long stories. Loads of action, killing and interesting forms of attack. Fast paced and exhilarating.

Thinking about Sharpe as I sit writing this I'm very much reminded of Hercules and the scale of his labours and the inventive way he solves them.

One of the reasons I have always loved these novels is that they are what I call 'twofers', ie great story and plot plus a good amount of history sprinkled in. I particularly loved the section in Paris where I discovered a whole series of facts I hadn't been aware of before, elephants, monkeys, ladders, second class medals and vine yards.

Wonderful to met Pat Harper again as well. All in all a rollicking read.

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Nearly a teary reunion this, the joy of having Richard Sharpe back - and it was as though he’d never been away. Once again called upon by the Duke of Wellington, it’s mission impossible for Sharpe, who thankfully has Pat back with him. From freeing a Fox from a fortress to finding a revolutionary network in Paris this book has all the derring do that has captivated an army of followers of Sharpe and does not disappoint. Even a nice touch of revenge on the man who had him flogged. Brilliant book, brilliant series, can’t say fairer than that.

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