Publication Order of Geordie Sharp Books
|Stand By, Stand By||(1996)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Zero Option||(1997)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|The Kremlin Device||(1998)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Tenth Man Down||(1999)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
Geordie Sharp is the protagonist of a collection of novels and short stories by best selling author Chris Ryan. The character was first introduced in the 1996 novel by the author, and subsequently featured in three full novels and a collection of short stories. The novel is narrated from Sharp’s point of view, with his thoughts and emotions often acting as a backdrop for the action taking place. Geordie Sharp has emerged as one of Chris Ryan’s most popular characters.
Geordie Sharp is introduced in the first novel as an SAS sargeant in the British Air Service. It is subsequently revealed that Sharp had suffered a harsh childhood, and he had joined the army at the age of 16 as a means of escape from his personal life. Rising quickly through the ranks, Sharp was given a place with the 22 Regiment of the Special Air Service, which gave him a sense of purpose in life. His experience in the army quickly sours, however, when he is brought back from the Gulf war after a brief period of internment in Iraqi held territory.
Novel 1: Stand By Stand By
When we first meet Geordie Sharp, he has just returned from the gulf region, severely wounded and still haunted by the memories of his experiences in Iraq. His relationship with his wife is strained, and in order to find escape in something familiar, Sharp agrees to partake in training with the North Ireland Troop for a special mission under the SAS. Sharp’s wife is murdered as a direct consequence of his involvement in the mission. Consumed with grief and rage, Sharp sets out to hunt down his wife’s killers, gravely risking hiscareer in the process. Sharp discovers that the man he is after is a major player in the Provisional IRA, and must find a way to shadow and kill the man. Things begin to unravel near the end, and the book ends with a cliffhanger.
Novel 2: Zero Option
The second novel in the series finds Sharp being forced to undertake two top secret missions with the knowledge that the authorities would disown him if anything were to go wrong. Sharp is required to act as the commander of a hit team on a 100 percent non attributable mission assigned to the regiment’s secretive Subversive Action Wing. The aim is to target an Iraqi who defected to Libya after the Gulf War. Sharp is instructed to kill the man and leave no clues as to the identity of the assassins. Once the mission is completed, Sharp is brought back to Britain and instructed to perform a high level political assassination, with the understanding that failure to complete the mission would result in the death of his four year old son at the hands of the IRA. Sharp must choose between seemingly impossible choices as circumstances rapidly come to a head.
Sharp’s story is picked up in subsequent novels some years after Zero Option. Sharp finds himself reassigned to Moscow to train aUnit while secretly on a mission to plant explosives under the Kremlin. Events go awry when Sharp embarks on an unauthorized undertaking against the Chechen Mafia, leading to the deaths of several gangsters. The mafia retaliates quickly, kidnapping two members of his team and gaining control of the explosives device. Sharp manages to remedy the situation before an international fiasco develops, but is reassigned to Southern Africa.
Sharp’s new job takes him to Kamanga, where he is caught in a civil war between the northern and southern tribes of Afundi and Kaswiri. Sharp’s team is instructed to provide training to Kaswiri soldiers, under a special forces group known as Alpha Cammando. A week into training, an accident occurs involving one of Sharp’s soldiers and a village boy. The tribe turns hostile to Sharp and his men, and a witch doctor curses the unit with ten deaths unless they left. Over subsequent days, the curse appears to come true, with soldiers being trampled, cannibalized and shot at. The Alpha Commando also turns against Sharp and have him and his teammates declared criminals.
Sharp is wanted by an army major who believes him to be aware of the whereabouts of avaluable diamond, although it is later revealed that the diamond had been hidden elsewhere all along. The actual thieves are caught in the crossfire between the Afundis and the Kaswiris, and escape to Central America, where they are tracked down by a vengeful Sharp, seeking revenge. The number of deaths occurring in the story up to this point add up to nine. The tenth and final death predicted by the curse also appears to come true when Sharp succumbs to an almost fatal dose of nuclear radiation.
Sharp, however, manages to recover, and flees Kamanga, discovering that he may have succumbed to cancer. Consequently, Sharp is discharged from the force, and he retires to spend the rest of his days with his child in Northern Ireland. The question of the witch doctor’s warning remains, as Sharp could well be the tenth and last man to die from the curse.
The character of Geordie Sharp has been viewed by many readers as a stand in for the author of the novels, himself a British Special Services operative. The novels follow the point of view of Sharp’s character, thus giving the reader an intimate window into the inner workings of the mind of the character. Geordie Sharp is shown to be a no nonsense, straight talking man with a great deal of experience in his field of work. His relationships with his wife and son are strained, but he is deeply attached to them and is overcome with grief after news reaches him of his wife’s murder. He is shown to be still suffering the emotional and mental effects of being kept prisoner in Iraq during the Gulf war, although he manages to gain some measure of control over those memories in later novels.
Sharp is shown to be a highly trained combatant, experienced in close range fighting and long range weapons, as well as being intimately familiar with tracking and rescue procedures. The basis of the overarching narrative of the novels hinge upon Sharp’s professional expertise often clashing with his personal beliefs and the resulting chaos.Book Series In Order » Characters » Geordie Sharp