The twentieth instalment in the bestselling Sharpe series. It is 1810 and the French are making yet another attempt to invade Portugal. Facing them is a wasted land, stripped of food by Wellington's orders, and captain Richard Sharpe. But Sharpe is in trouble. His job as Captain of the Light Company is under threat and he has made a new enemy, a Portuguese criminal known as Ferragus. Sharpe, discarded by his regiment, wages a private war against Ferragus -- a war fought through the burning, pillaged streets of Coimbra, Portugal's ancient university city. Sharpe's enemies are numerous but on his side he has Sergeant Patrick Harper, the Portuguese officer Jorge Vincent and a prickly English governess, whose first aim is to clean up Sharpe's language. Sharpe's Escape begins on the great, gaunt ridge of Bussaco where a joint British and Portuguese army meets the overwhelming strength of Marshall Massena's crack troops. It finishes at Torres Vedras where the French hopes of occupying Portugal quickly die. This is a classic Sharpe novel, with Richard Sharpe in his finest form reunited with Patrick Harper, and facing enemies on every side.
Bernard Cornwell worked for BBC Television for seven years, mostly as a producer on the Nationwide programme, before taking charge of the Current Affairs department in Northern Ireland. In 1978 he became editor of Thames Television's Thames at Six. Married to an American, he now lives in the United States.