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The Twisted Sword (The Poldark Saga #11)

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  1,759 Ratings  ·  98 Reviews
The eleventh novel in the legendary Poldark saga. Cornwall, 1815: Demelza sees a horseman riding down the valley and senses disruption to the domestic contentment she has fought so hard to achieve. For Ross has little option but to accept the summons - and travel to Paris with his family, as an "observer" of the French armed forces. Parisian life begins well with an exhila ...more
Paperback, 544 pages
Published May 10th 2002 by Pan Books (UK) (first published October 4th 1991)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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This volume, the eleventh in the series, is a sword that twists in your heart. Set in the last days of Bonaparte’s reign, it captures all the tension and fear that war can produce when it spills over into and affects the lives of so many people in so many countries. On a personal level for Graham's characters, it highlights all the missteps that await everyone and can wreak havoc in a heart and a life.

Graham continues to follow the second generation, but he does so without losing touch with the
In honor of the new BBC series based on Winston Graham's Poldark novels, I decided it was time to finish reading the series. I thought I had finished it decades ago, only to find out that Graham managed two write two more prior to his death in 2003. Lucky for me, because the 11th in the series, The Twisted Sword, was fabulous.

The book opens in the year 1815, when Ross Poldark is sent to Paris by the English government, to observe the political situation there. The family immerses themselves in t
Dec 25, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Misfit, Kim
After have read a total of 4694 pages of the 11 of 12 books of the Poldark series, there are still 554 pages to be read with the final volume of this magnificent family saga.

As in the final part of The Loving Cup, Ross Poldark and his family travel to Paris as an "observer" of the French armed forces. As soon as Napoleon returns to Paris, a panic occurs and most people try to flee from the eminent danger.

The destinies of Ross, Jeremy and Stephen will suffer a dramatic change during the Waterloo'
Oct 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
What an amazing part of the series - so sad, so beautifully written. Can't express the anguish this book put me through & I can't believe that I only have 1 book to go to the end - thank goodness they will all be sitting there waiting for me to read again next year. That's when the new TV series starts with the seriously gorgeous Aidan Turner as Ross. So on to Bella Poldark now
Feb 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing

Deliver my soul from the sword, My only life from the power of the dog.

Somehow I should have known by the title. For it seems that Winston Graham has a real knack for choosing them. Here we have another heartbreaker in the series. There is no way to describe the feelings I have about the turn of events in the story without giving away key events in the plot. So I will leave that mystery for the reader.

You must know that this is Book 11 in a series of 12 books. And I must stress that
Oct 11, 2010 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 04, 2015 rated it liked it
This is a continuation of the Poldark saga into the years circa 1814-1817. It's three or four verbose storylines. All have some part of their context in the politico roles adopted by Ross and Demelza. Their position as observers in Paris and within connection to the English government during the last Napoleonic years is the starting point. Demelza is in her mid-40's and Ross about 10 years older. He becomes titled. There may be some spoiler hints now, so read no further. It's the crux of the boo ...more
Mar 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
More a rant than a review to be honest...

(view spoiler)
Jan 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Some spoilers may abound!

This one was very good and I felt moved much quicker than some other ones. I loved them being in Paris and even once R/D became separated (through no choice of their own), the story still moved well enough thanks to the side stories.

I for one was soooo happy to see Stephan go and I had a hunch about Jeremy as well. It was very sad, but he was never my favorite character I have to admit. I can't wait to see how this comes together onscreen though! Another side story I lo
Mar 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I have no words- only tears.
Apr 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2016
I can't really explain why I love this series so much. I just feel like these people are members of my family or something and I just have to find out their story. This book was every bit as good as the others. There are some detailed descriptions of battles, particularly Waterloo, and there are some truly heartbreaking moments. I'm not sure if I cried at any point in the other books but I definitely did with this one. Only one more book left in the series. I'm excited to finish, partly because ...more
Aug 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A love these characters and will sad when the saga ends. One more book to go.
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Twisted Sword (Poldark, #11), Winston Graham
Jun 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I enjoyed this book the most of the series so far.
Helena R-D
May 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the penultimate book in the series and it ended not with a bang, but a whimper. It was a subdued ending, considering that two people died, one of which was the scion of the Poldarks and the other, the daughter's shady ass husband. At least there's a bit of hope at the end, when Jeremy's daughter is born.

George is hilarious in the fact that as ill intentioned in social dealings and lucky in business as he is, he doesn't seem to be able to really get ahead in the game. He marries a debt-r
Mar 20, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
A lot happens in this volume which was intended to be the final book of the Poldark epic when it came out in 1990. A full thirteen years later the author penned a post script volume which came out in 2003, the year he died. This volume is primarily an account of Napoleon's reprise and its repercussions to the Poldark family. There is at least one character who was satisfactorily, if not a bit hastily (but couldn't have been soon enough for me) written out of the script.
Cynthia  Scott
Dec 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A very dramatic addition to the Poldark saga. Much of the story takes place in France where three Poldark men are involved in the second war with Napoleon and their wives and young children are in Europe as well! Very good and graphic description of the fighting and the strategy of the battle of Waterloo.

Meanwhile adventures on the high seas with Stephen Carrington.

And back in Cornwall, a lot of drama from the recent flurry of new marriages, joys, and tragedies. And old George Warleggen continue
Helen White
Mar 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
It's a big book ... a lot happens. Avoiding spoilers - Napoleon is a bit of an arse, Ross and Demelza should never go abroad as it only leads to trouble, babies are born and people die. The penultimate book in the series and it's a good one.
Elizabeth Elwood
Mar 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Having seen the original Poldark series when it first came on television, I am surprised that I never got around to reading the Poldark books, especially as I have read and enjoyed many other Winston Graham novels. However, last summer I rectified the omission and waded my way through the lengthy series. I have to say that I loved the books and enjoyed them even more than the TV series. They are a fast and absorbing read, packed with exciting incidents and dramatic character conflicts, yet with ...more
Jan 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Not familiar with this twelve volume series written over 50 years by Winston Graham? No need to feel daunted by the 10,000 pages of this saga. You can plop yourself in front of the telly for the BBC production! But this is Goodreads, and this is a review of The Twisted Sword.

It has been decades since Ross Poldark returned from America where he was a “redcoat” trying to stop the revolution of the American colonies. In his native Cornwall, his return marks the start of the upswing in his family’s
Jun 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Susan Hug
Aug 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017
I feel like I've had a long love affair with Winston Graham's characters in the Poldark series. I read the first 10 novels in quick succession then, feeling mourning encroaching as time with the Poldards was ending, I delayed reading The Twisted Sword. So 11 months later I finally read the last page, and sadly understood the title's name. Yes, there's plenty of battle action in the closing fight of the Napoleanic wars, but the twisting sword was not reserved for only the written characters; Grah ...more
May 06, 2017 rated it liked it
This book needed to end following the the depiction of the battle of Waterloo. Instead, it wallows on for an additional 200 pages of melodramatic soap opera. As has happened at times previously in this series, too much happens too quickly straining belief, even allowing for literary license. I found it to be especially glaring in the aftermath of the watershed battle. However, at least the author does balance the death of the most fully realized character of the series (and my personal favorite, ...more
Jan 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"The Twisted Sword" is an exciting, anguish-filled novel that follows Jeremy, Geoffrey Charles, and Ross as each of them is caught-up in the final battles of the Napoleonic War. There is the usual sturm und drang as the various protagonists face assorted disasters in their lives. With never a dull moment, there are heartbreaking episodes that had me weeping my heart out. I can't imagine what can possibly happen next to fill the final novel in this amazing series.

It's hard for me to believe that
Aug 15, 2017 rated it liked it

Glad the wars have finally ended; I was growing weary of reading
about them. The conflict cost young Jeremy his life. Left his loving widow Cuby with
an unborn child.

Young Stephen lost his life too--from foolishness not battle.
Left his beautiful wife Clowance grieving the death of her brother
and now her husband.

Cécile Hemery
Aug 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Another great book from the series, I cannot believe there is only left.
I have rarely read such a moving description of grief. It almost brought me to tears.
Still unexpected, still digging new depths to characters, this book brings a pivotal chance of pace to the story of the Poldark family.
Stephanie Siu
Jul 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: in-my-possession
My absolute FAVOURITE of the books post-time jump. Oh my goodness, what a relentless ride! Twist after shock after drama after surprise! Loved every single minute. I will be coming back to re-read this installment with relish! I can't even begin to summarise certain events...AMAZING!
Janette Jones
Aug 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Full review will to follow.
Jun 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully written, but sad.
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
Poldark Saga - Wi...: Stephen Carrington 7 38 Jul 04, 2017 07:06AM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: Reviews 29 39 Jun 25, 2017 07:25AM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: Ross & Jeremy Poldark at Waterloo 1 17 Jun 14, 2017 08:47AM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: Jeremy 7 61 Sep 26, 2016 11:39AM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: New characters introduced in this book 1 10 Jan 13, 2016 08:25AM  
Poldark Saga discussion group 1 8 Nov 24, 2015 12:13PM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: La Marseillaise (the French National Anthem) 2 10 Nov 11, 2015 08:59AM  
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Winston Graham was the author of forty novels. His books have been widely translated and the Poldark series has been developed into two television series, shown in 22 countries. Six of Winston Graham's books have been filmed for the big screen, the most notable being Marnie, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Winston Graham was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and in 1983 was awarded the O.B ...more
More about Winston Graham...

Other Books in the Series

The Poldark Saga (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Ross Poldark (Poldark, #1)
  • Demelza (Poldark, #2)
  • Jeremy Poldark (Poldark, #3)
  • Warleggan (Poldark, #4)
  • The Black Moon (Poldark, #5)
  • The Four Swans (Poldark, #6)
  • The Angry Tide (Poldark, #7)
  • The Stranger from the Sea (Poldark, #8)
  • The Miller's Dance (Poldark, #9)
  • The Loving Cup (Poldark, #10)

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