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Customer Discussions > Historical Fiction forum

Bernard Cornwell

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Showing 1-17 of 17 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 9, 2010 5:05:57 AM PST
Library GaGa says:
I'm a librarian trying to develop the historical fiction section. I don't want to buy series books because my community may not read them and then I'd be stuck with several duds instead of just one. Does anyone know if the Bernard Cornwell Saxon and his other series can be read as stand-alones? I bought Agincourt and it's circulating well. For series I usually buy the first and if it's popular I'll go ahead with more. Thanks.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 12, 2010 2:54:19 PM PST
J. Nelson says:
No, I think his Saxon novels must be read in order. He does have a free-standing novel out about the American Revolution called THE FORT. I haven't yet read it so cannot speak to its quality.

Posted on Dec 12, 2010 8:08:46 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 12, 2010 8:09:45 PM PST
You should have a copy of Canadian author Hope Muntz' The Golden Warrior (published originally in England in the 40's) if you don't already have it in your library. It's a one of a kind novel and, on my view anyway, the best of its breed. Another good historical fiction novel, of much more recent vintage is Saga: A Novel of Medieval Iceland by Jeff Janoda (also a Canadian). It's one of the best recent works of saga-based historical fiction around. It, too, is a one of a kind. While both may be a little highbrow for some audiences, they are unmatched in depth and realization of a medieval world in its own terms.


Posted on Dec 13, 2010 6:23:16 AM PST
So I have read all the Bernard Cornwell series, and I can tell you that it is an excellent series. His most famous is the Sharpe's series. I live in a small town and they stock all his books. He has several series and once you read one, you want to read them all.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 14, 2010 6:35:16 AM PST
Library GaGa says:
Okay, thanks for letting me know the Saxon novels are not stand-alones and should be read in order.

Posted on Dec 19, 2010 3:14:44 PM PST
Bookish-One2 says:
A brilliant writer. But I think his early books are better than the newer ones.


Posted on Dec 19, 2010 4:10:58 PM PST
Nick Brett says:
The Sharpe books are excellent and can be read out of order.....
The Fort is indeed stand alone but nothing more then 'okay'.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 20, 2010 6:33:22 AM PST
I disagree about the Sharpe's being read out of order. There are several story lines and references that carry over book to book. They won't make sense if you don't read them. If you wait to read Sharpe's eagle last you will miss a main part that defines Sharpe.

Posted on Dec 21, 2010 8:22:42 AM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Jul 18, 2011 12:05:29 PM PDT]

Posted on Jan 14, 2011 5:22:17 AM PST
Joe Hohmann says:
I just started the 18 book Sharpe's series, and am currently on book #5. Very good reading, so far.

Posted on Jan 14, 2011 7:12:56 AM PST
Do your readers a favor and add at least one of the Flashman series but George MacDonald Fraser. And of course, almost anything by Patrick O'Brian, not just the Master and Commander series. Barrie Unsworth writes excellent historical fiction as well and none of his novels require prior reading.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2011 8:04:05 AM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Jul 15, 2011 7:00:04 PM PDT]

Posted on Jan 14, 2011 9:36:27 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 14, 2011 9:43:52 AM PST
How about the Diana Gabaldon "Outlander "series. Six or seven books in the series but each stands alone.
She is such a wonderful story-teller that you will want to read them all. Timeline goes from 1745 Scotland through the Revolutionary War to the present. I have reread them several times.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 2, 2012 12:55:47 PM PST
gary says:
Hi Library gaga if your already have Bernard Cornwall's books add `Viking Sword Saxon Shield' and `Vikings Saxon Holocaust.' These can be read as stand alone books although they do follow on with the same characters. These are less blood and guts and not sexual brutally as Cornwall's writing. They are truly romantic historical fiction novels based on true historical figures and battles around the east coast of England at the end of the 10th century. This was during the reign of King Aethelred. The main story line is about a young warrior who arrives in England as a Vikings rowing slave. He escapes and when King Aethelred's youngest daughter is kidnapped by the Vikings he saves her and is rewarded by being made the Princesses bodyguard... Of course he falls madly in love with her. Not only are there a vast social status differences but her father the King has sent her for an arranged marriage to cement his alliance with the son of the second most powerful noble in his Kingdom. Viking Sword Saxon Shield Vikings! Saxon Holocaust

Posted on Jan 7, 2012 2:09:59 AM PST
Julie Thomas says:
I loved Bernard Cornwall's Arthurian trilogy, The Winter King, Enemy of God and Excalibur. There was imagery in those books that has stayed with me for years. I highly recommend them.


Posted on Jan 7, 2012 3:55:32 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 7, 2012 3:56:24 AM PST
I. J. Parker says:
I've read the Sharpe series out of order. The books are wonderful. There is also a very good mystery set in 18th century England. It is a stand-alone. Sorry, the title escapes me. Something with "gallows"?
I don't care much for the setting in his other novels.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 9, 2012 5:01:29 PM PST
Selene says:
Bernard Cornwell has an excellent website and you can find up-to-date series listings there. It is important to read the Saxon stories in order, the Sharpe novels probably less so - Cornwell actually went back in time and later on wrote several prequels to the original books. As with all series, though, there's on-going backstory which you miss if you don't read sequentially.
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Discussion in:  Historical Fiction forum
Participants:  15
Total posts:  17
Initial post:  Dec 9, 2010
Latest post:  Jan 9, 2012

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