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Sharpe's Gold (Richard Sharpe (chronological order) #9)

4.04  ·  Rating Details  ·  6,710 Ratings  ·  129 Reviews
A year after the war at Talavera, Wellington's army, outnumbered and out of money, is on the verge of collapse. Its only hope lies in a cache of gold hidden in the Portuguese mountains, and the only man capable of stealing it is Captain Richard Sharpe. He embarks on a secret mission that pits him against the French army; El Catolico, the fanatical Spanish guerrilla leader; ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 7th 1987 by Penguin Books (first published 1981)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jason Koivu
It's a treasure hunt and everyone's invited!

British army officer Richard Sharpe is sent on a secretive mission in Spain, almost a fool's errand, to obtain rumored gold. This is gold that belongs to the Spanish, but is needed by the British, who certainly don't want it to fall into the hands of the French! Many of the nation's involved in the Napoleonic wars are represented in this ally-vs-ally-vs-enemy-vs-etc book, even the Germans show up for some fun!

Sharpe's Gold is fun and would be considere
...more
Algernon
Feb 06, 2013 Algernon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013

Sharpe's Gold picks up the story of the freshly appointed, yet unconfirmed, Captain Richard Sharpe soon after his famous capture of a French regimental Eagle at the battle of Talavera (I think 1810, but I'm not very good with numbers). The fate of the British armies in Portugal is in Dire Straits (I've always wanted to find a way to insert the name of this rock band in one of my reviews) , and General Wellington's last resort is to send the unorthodox but highly effective Sharpe deep into enemy
...more
Shane
Feb 05, 2015 Shane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This has to be the worst of the Sharpe series. Aside from the abrupt ending to an already short novel, there are inconsistencies with the consistency of Cornwell's writing and characters. Sharpe and Wellington are both amply out of character here. While both are motivated by an unrelenting desire to succeed, the actions taken in this installment go beyond their previously established value system. There are also plot holes such as how did Hagman and his 3 get out of the village after providing o ...more
Ensiform
Feb 01, 2014 Ensiform rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, historical, war
Sharpe, immediately after winning accolades for capturing a French Eagle, is ordered by Wellington to steal a fortune in Spanish gold. This is in the care of El Catolico, a devious and selfish Spanish partisan, who wants it for himself. Naturally, Sharpe means to take it – and El Catolico’s fierce, beautiful lover, of course.

Cornwell surprised me in this book: Major Kearsey, the strict, rather uptight official whom Sharpe has difficulties with, did not, to my great amazement, turn out to be trai
...more
Steelwhisper
4.5 rounded up, clearly one of Cornwell's earlier books.
Ed
Jun 27, 2008 Ed rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Historical Fiction Readers
Taking place in 1809, this is the ninth book chronologically in the Richard Sharpe series. In my opinion it is the worst of the nine.

Sharpe, as usual, has more problems with his own people than with the French enemy. In this story he encounters an arrogant provost, a religious zealot, an unsympathetic General and a Spanish ally who wants him dead.

Also, as usual, he meets a beautiful woman whom he falls in love with but can never have because he is a soldier and must move on.

He survives numerous
...more
Deanne
Mar 03, 2014 Deanne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, war
Reading these books makes me want to watch the series again, it's one of those periods of time that I am drawn to. Love the whole Napoleonic wars era, though I prefer Nelson to Wellington.
Anyway back to the book, it's still the peninsular wars with Britain trying to retain their foothold in Portugal and Spain. Things are going badly and funds are low, but there's a hidden stash of gold that could come in handy if only we can get our mitts on it. There's also a man Wellington has in mind for the
...more
Joe
Another enjoyable romp through the Napoleonic Wars. This time, not so much as fighting the French as the Spanish Guerrillas. After all, even your allies get a little upset when you steal, sorry, rescue their gold. Even if it is at the command of the Duke of Wellington! It all climaxes with Sharpe becoming trapped in a siege and being ordered by the city commander to return the gold to the Spanish and Sharpe's novel solution to his problem...
Jon
May 13, 2014 Jon rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
So far my least favorite of the Sharpe series. I'll avoid spoilers, but Sharpe's solution to his seemingly intractable problem was appalling and indefensible. Cornwell did a poor job of selling the problem and the solution, and so I think I'll just have to forget this ever happened if I'm to enjoy the rest of the series.
Eric_W
Nov 29, 2008 Eric_W rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sharpe’s Gold by Bernard Cornwell is another enjoyable volume in Cornwell’s Napoleonic War series featuring our hero, Richard Sharpe. I found this one particularly interesting not just because it’s a good story that proposes an unusual solution for the cause of a huge explosion that destroyed the fortress at Alameda, but also because of the huge ethical dilemma that Sharpe creates for himself. To my way of thinking, Sharpe doesn’t linger long enough on the ramifications of his act, which kills h ...more
David
Jul 23, 2011 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The second book in the series - chronologically the ninth - Sharpes Gold tells of a daring mission behing enemy lines to retreive a hidden caches of gold in the Portuguese mountains.

For anyone who has seen the TV adaptation, be warned: the novel only holds a passing resemblance. It's also typical Sharpe fare: the hero taking on both his own side and the enemy. This is also the novel that introduces us to the Partisan Teresa, who later in the series becomes his wife. As usual for Cornwell, real e
...more
Dawn
While this is book #9 in the series, it is only the third Sharpe book I have read.
Sharpe is asked by Wellington to complete a task to save the war from being lost. At first it seems all too simple and is soon made complicated by bad information and incompetent superior officers. Despite the involvement of the Spanish freedom fighters and a beautiful girl, Sharpe manages to complete his mission with the aid of the Polish lancers sent to assist.
I have always loved heroes who prevail against all o
...more
Paul Downs
Sep 09, 2015 Paul Downs rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hardly a revelation at this point that this series is a decent read, with some interesting history tacked onto a somewhat improbable hero.
Jon Jervis
Mar 28, 2016 Jon Jervis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Your typical Sharpe novel - up against the odds but succeeding. Fast paced and entertaining this book is much like the rest of the series so if you like one you will like the rest.
Larry
Feb 14, 2016 Larry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m REALLY hooked. I started this, the 9th book in the series, immediately – the same day – after completing the prior one.

The author, Bernard Cornwell, continues to do great job. The series is starting to sound a little bit like Clive Cussler’s though – there’s the Dirk Pitt the main character/hero and Al Giordino. For Cornwell, it's Sharp and Sergeant Harper. While the formula gets Sharp into trouble, allows him to fight his way out (and there’s always a woman involved), unlike Cussler, Cornwe
...more
Ed
May 29, 2015 Ed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
#9 in the Richard Sharpe series chronologically and #2 in publication order. General Wellesley (later to be the Duke of Wellington) assigns Captain Richard Sharpe and his light company to a dangerous mission. He is to steal a cache of gold from the British Spanish allies. His mission is so secret that the gold is not mentioned and his guide has been so integrated with the Spaniards that he is opposed to the theft.

Richard Sharpe and the Destruction of Almeida, August 1810 - Only a year after its
...more
David
This, Sharpe's Gold, was the first of Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe novels (1981) and the reader will see a number of the literary devices and characterizations at an early stage of development.

First of all, this is an action/adventure novel set during the Peninsula Campaign of the Napoleonic Wars. The author was at pains to get the details right while balancing this with a modern, moralizing sensibility. There is a darkness in the character of Sharpe while at the same time making it clear to the r
...more
Ernie
Mar 03, 2014 Ernie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
See review for Sharpe's Rifles. This is the second book written in the series, although I understand the author backfilled... writing more stories that filled in between the originals. Some years later he wrote Sharpe's Havoc which fell between Sharpe's Rifles and this book. Curious. But... it was fun. I am trying to read a Fitzgerald book which is well written but the characters are all painfully really, the story boring its and not nearly as much fun as these fantastical adventures and this he ...more
Drew Ck
Jan 15, 2015 Drew Ck rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Captain Sharpe is ordered to bring back Spanish gold to pay for the war in Portugal.
Josh Burcham
I'm reading this because I needed something light and easy after "the brothers karamazov". This is an easy entertaining read however it is far from Cornwell's best work. I have read most of the sharpe series and a dozen or more of Cornwell's other books. I had forgotten that the sharp books written later are better. My advise, read the sharpe series in chronological order (not in the order they were written). The first seven or so are really good. This is book 9 and it is only ok but still fun.
Nate
Feb 16, 2014 Nate rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know what it was about this one, but it felt a bit different from the mid-period Sharpe books so far. It just had a bit more grit and personality to it or something. Whatever it is, I could use a bit more of it--I always, always have a good deal of fun with Sharpe but lately the formulaic bone structure of the books has become more and more apparent. There's nothing here that changes the formula but it was just a particularly compelling entry, at least for me. With every consecutive book ...more
Kate Sherrod
Jun 15, 2013 Kate Sherrod rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've never been more eager to see a TV/movie adaptation of a novel as I am that of Sharpe's Gold. This is not because of its quality, which is fair to middling as Sharpe novels go.* Rather, it's because I'm dying of curiosity as to how the continuity problem is going to be handled.

The continuity problem named Teresa Moreno, whom I've already seen played to dashing perfection by the great Assumpta Serna in the TV movies of Sharpe's Rifles and Sharpe's Eagle. Even though her character didn't belon
...more
Gordon
Dec 04, 2013 Gordon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is yet another book in Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe series about the exploits of a British soldier during the era of the Napoleonic Wars. This one takes place in Spain, where the war raged for many years pitting the French against the British, Portuguese and Spanish -- with Spanish guerrillas playing at least as large a role as the conventional forces. In this volume, Captain Sharpe is sent to retrieve a store of Spanish gold, desperately needed by the British commander, the Duke of Wellington ...more
Bjoern
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mick
The second chapter of Bernard Cornwell's Napoleonic war series, by order of publication, Sharpe's Gold is unusual for the series in that it is based on largely fictional events.

1809, a year after the British victory at Talavera. Richard Sharpe is now a Captain, though his promotion has yet to be confirmed, and the British army is losing in Spain. Wellington has a plan which could save Portugal, but he needs money and isn't getting any from Whitehall. Sharpe is called upon to travel into enemy t
...more
Kathy Davie
Dec 16, 2011 Kathy Davie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First read Jan 23, 2009.

Ninth in the Richard Sharpe military fiction series. This one finds Richard a Captain during the Peninsular War in August 1810.


My Take
Just a bit of theft required to acquire the gold Wellesley needs to continue the war. London believes all is lost and is dithering about sending any money while still expecting Wellesley to pay the Spanish, the Portuguese, and take care of his own men.

I can't blame Wellesley for taking the gold especially since the Spanish were such tight
...more
Dark-Draco
One of the original adventures, so I have read this a few times, but it is still good. Sharpe and his Light Company, have to cross behind enemy lines and retrieve some gold before the French find it. The British army need it or they will lose the war. The only trouble is, the gold actually belongs to the Spanish, who would obviously prefer it to stay in their hands. Under the orders of Kearsey, they find that the village where it is hidden is over-run by French, but under attack from an enigmati ...more
Professor
May 28, 2013 Professor rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Sharpe's fans
Recommended to Professor by: Brother Grimm/Pops Mortis
Sharpe is at it again, doing his Sharpe thing, which, this time, is following Wellington's orders: to go into occupied Spain and bring back Spanish gold that Wellington must have to win the war. The English government won't give him the money if he asks for it, neither will the Portuguese or Spanish. It is, in fact, Spanish money, but their objections must be overruled. The money is in the hands of El Catolico, a Spanish guerrilla captain who says the lords prayer while killing his opponents. Th ...more
Benjamin
Sadly, I've figured out the formula of Cornwell's "Sharpe's Rifles" books, and it makes it harder for me to enjoy them:

1. Reintroduce all the characters from the previous book; summarize their adventures. Make sure that Sharpe's company is full of England's ethnicities, and that they are all good fighters regardless of origin or social class (although, to Cornwell's credit, he doesn't go as far as Pope's "Ramage" novels and have an actual American in his gang).

2. Sharpe is assigned to some impo
...more
Lee
May 27, 2016 Lee rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bernard-cornwell
This book follows the typical Sharpe plot, he is recruited by someone, in this case the Duke of Wellington, to do a dangerous job that may lead to his death. Along the way he meets and seduces a beautiful woman which usually does fare well for her. In this case he and his company are sent behind the lines to get/steal Spanish gold and bring it back to help the British defeat Napoleon. Along the way he battles the French, Spanish Partisans and even some members of his own Army. Good read
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12542
Cornwell was born in London in 1944. His father was a Canadian airman, and his mother, who was English, a member of the Women's Auxiliary Air Force. He was adopted and brought up in Essex by the Wiggins family, who were members of the Peculiar People, a strict Protestant sect who banned frivolity of all kinds and even medicine. After he left them, he changed his name to his mother's maiden name, C ...more
More about Bernard Cornwell...

Other Books in the Series

Richard Sharpe (chronological order) (1 - 10 of 21 books)
  • Sharpe's Tiger (Sharpe, #1)
  • Sharpe's Triumph (Sharpe, #2)
  • Sharpe's Fortress (Sharpe, #3)
  • Sharpe's Trafalgar (Sharpe, #4)
  • Sharpe's Prey (Sharpe, #5)
  • Sharpe's Rifles (Sharpe, #6)
  • Sharpe's Havoc (Sharpe, #7)
  • Sharpe's Eagle (Sharpe, #8)
  • Sharpe's Escape (Sharpe, #10)
  • Sharpe's Fury (Sharpe, #11)

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