Thursday, 26 May 2011
THE COMPLETE LITERARY 007 - Carte Blanche (preview)
This has jumped to the top of my TBR pile so expect a review here soon as part of our complete literary James Bond series - we can backtrack on the remaining books later.
I'm excited to start this. The review in the London Evening Standard ended - Kingsley Amis, John Gardner and Sebastian Faulks are among those who have tried to bring Bond back to life. Deaver, though, is in a class of his own: nobody's done it better. Though how well informed the reviewer was is anyone's guess, since he seems to have overlooked the popular Bond author, Raymond Benson. And before anyone comments about Charley Higson, author of the young Bond books being included then note, they are fine if you want them but I refuse to accept them as 007 canon. I've got nothing against Mr Higson, indeed I've never read any of the Young Bond books and never will, as I tend to agree with John Gardner, a mean Bond author himself, when he said of the Young Bond books - ""It's just the last desperate attempt to draw in a new audience. The films have little to do with the Bond we used to know, and now the books are going the same way."
Let's hope that Carte Blanche takes us back to the true Bond universe.
According to the Guardian newspaper - The Bond of Carte Blanche is in his 30s, a former navy officer who saw frontline action in Afghanistan and was then recruited – not to MI6, but to a black-ops outfit called the "Overseas Development Group". Bond is still run by M and furnished with gadgets by "Q Branch". (Bond's mobile phone, in an excitingly modern way, has lots of espionage "apps".)
Bond is healthier, too: a "former smoker" (no more Balkan Sobranies, alas) who still likes the odd cocktail but also spends "at least an hour a day exercising and running.
Is Deaver's Bond worthy of Flemings Bond? The Archive will give its opinion soon.