Bernard Cornwell's Azincourt tops book charts

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"Azincourt" – the French name for Agincourt – has achieved something most serious historians can only dream of by selling 13,000 copies in five days.

The book has rocketed to the top of book charts with readers enjoying the story of the battle between the English and French in 1415 told with a bit of literary licence.

Its popularity echoes that of Shakespeare's version, which has kept the battle alive in the public imagination for centuries.

Azincourt was written by Bernard Cornwell, a British author who lives in America, and is well-known for his series of 21 books about Richard Sharpe which chronicle the Napoleonic Wars and were turned into a TV series featuring Sean Bean.

With his latest book, Cornwell's main character is not Henry V but Nicholas Hook, a yeoman who joins a mercenary force to protect the town of Soissons when it is besieged by the French and then enlists in the English king's army.

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