1356

1356

A Novel

Book - 2013
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"The most prolific and successful historical novelist in the world today" (Wall Street Journal) has delivered another blockbuster with this thrilling tale of peril and conquest at the Battle of Poitiers.

September 1356. All over France, towns are closing their gates. Crops are burning, and through-out the countryside people are on the alert for danger. The English army--led by the heir to the throne, the Black Prince--is set to invade, while the French, along with their Scottish allies, are ready to hunt them down.

But what if there was a weapon that could decide the outcome of the imminent war?

Thomas of Hookton, known as le Batard, has orders to uncover the lost sword of Saint Peter, a blade with mystical powers said to grant certain victory to whoever possesses her. The French seek the weapon, too, and so Thomas's quest will be thwarted at every turn by battle and betrayal, by promises made and oaths broken. As the outnumbered English army becomes trapped near Poitiers, Thomas, his troop of archers and men-at-arms, his enemies, and the fate of the sword converge in a maelstrom of violence, action, and heroism.

Rich with colorful characters, great adventure, and thrilling conflict, 1356 is a magnificent tale of how the quest for a holy relic with the power to change history may culminate in an epic struggle.

Publisher: New York : Harper, 2013.
Edition: First U.S. edition.
ISBN: 9780061969676
0061969672
Branch Call Number: Fic
Characteristics: 417 p. : maps ; 24 cm.

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j
jtcampbel47
Aug 19, 2016

Loved it!!!

j
jazpur
Jul 28, 2015

Loved it, right down to the last gory detail and the detail was exceedingly gory. Cornwell writes with style and his meticulous research is always evident.

p
petehoover98118
Nov 08, 2014

The thing that has most fascinated me is in the Historical Note at the end of the novel: that since the 1350's there has been a 3,000% rise in the price of ale.
So I'm trying to figure out what a pint cost in the 1350's: Let's say a pint now costs a pound. There are 12 shillings to a pound, (old money) and there were 12 pence to a shilling, and two halfpennies to a pence and 4 farthings to a penny. So what kind of coin was used to pay for a pint in the 1350's? A slice of a farthing, which in itself is about the size of an American penny? I can't do it without a calculator! (See what I mean about it being fascinating?)

t
talks2hiscat
Sep 05, 2013

I'm lovin' Cornwell again. The Sharpe Novel were great reads, I became Cornwell a bit burned out with the Sharpe concept. 1356 is a breath of fresh air, and his hero, Thomas of Hookton is a welcome change. This is the first T of H novel I've read. A compelling and historically accurate account of the Battle of Poitiers. I've made a lifetime study of the 10th-15th Centuries. This was, (as usual with Cornwell), a painstakingly researched story. I enjoyed it immensely and sure you will as well.

jawhybrow Jul 22, 2013

I always liked the Sharpe books (and the TV show). But this book I put down in disgust after encountering blinding, rape, evisceration, and castration by page 49.

If I want to read about The Hundred Years' War, I'll stick to real history books, not Cornwell's fiction.

JCLGreggW Jul 03, 2013

This was my first exposure to Cornwell, one of the leading lights in historical fiction. I enjoyed 1356 quite a bit once I got past the first fifty pages or so, which were a bit slow. But once the action gets going, though, it's a compelling read, culminating in the Battle of Poitiers, which is completely riveting. Cornwell adds fictional flourishes and characters to one of the major battles of the Hundred Years' War between England and France. Here, the English armies are running amok in France, trying to provoke a battle, and they get one. Cornwell adds subplots abound the battle, giving each character a stake in the outcome, including a holy relic, a sword owned by St. Peter. 1356 works as a standalone, although the major character, archer and leader of men, Thomas of Hookton, appears in other Cornwell books.

z
zipread
Apr 05, 2013

1356 --- by Bernard Cornwell --- This is Cornwell’s most recent offering and a book well worth waiting for. The author’s web site provides this thumb-nail sketch: “Thomas of Hookton, a veteran of Crecy and many other battles, is the leader of a mercenary company of bowmen and men-at-arms who ravage the countryside east of Gascony. Edward, Prince of Wales, later to be known as the Black Prince, is assembling an army to fight the French once more but before Thomas can join, he must fulfil an urgent task. A fascinating hero and the pursuit of a sword with mythical power, thought to be concealed somewhere near Poitiers – Go with God and fight like the Devil….in 1356.” This book shares much with Bernard’s previous novels: excitement, suspense, and lots of action. One thing the author is exceptionally good at is in setting the scene ---- putting you right back there in time and place. Meticulous in his detail he describes the weapons, the armour, the horses and the lay of the land. You are there. You hear the swish of the speeding arrows. You hear the clang of the armour. You hear the cry and shout of the soldiers. You won’t be able to turn the pages fast enough to read this novel.

b
Bibi71
Apr 02, 2013

The cover caught my attention and as I flipped through it I just had to give this book a read, so glad I did! 1356 was a fantastic read, I couldn't put it down. First book I've ever read of Bernard Cornwell, I'm absolutely hooked! I will definitely be searching for more to get my 'Cornwell' fix!

d
deRougemont
Feb 05, 2013

Another excellent tale by Cornwell. He is every bit as comfortable in a 14th century setting as in the 19th and he proves that he is not limited to "Sharpe" and the Rifles. His books set during the Hundred Years War are a delight to read and well researched.

p
Palomino
Dec 20, 2012

I always thought Bernard Cornwell was cheesy and wooden, read only because of historical detail. Lately I've really been enjoying the medieval books. This one has a (wooden) romance, a bit of magic (or not, you decide), a charming hero, all kinds of historical detail, and a plot that kept my interest all the way through. More, please.

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s
SEBoiko
Jun 24, 2013

Men always laugh at the jests of princes.

s
SEBoiko
Jun 24, 2013

The rules keep you alive.

s
SEBoiko
Jun 24, 2013

The best marriage is between a blind woman and a deaf man.

s
SEBoiko
Jun 24, 2013

A man cannot break an oath and keep his soul.

s
SEBoiko
Jun 24, 2013

Woman brought sin into this world, brother, and they have never ceased to bring it.

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