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Re: A new Anthony Horowitz Bond novel...

Thunderpussy wrote:

I'd suggest anything but Solo ! I hated it  ajb007/mad

I prefer Solo to most of the latter Bond books...DMC was the one I actually got bored reading... ajb007/amazed

YNWA 96

The Unbearables

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Re: A new Anthony Horowitz Bond novel...

I seem to recollect my good buddy charmed and dangerous recommending that I read col sun in Cyprus as it has Greek settings . I like to read a book that is relevant to my holiday destination . That way I can eat , drink what Bond has , believe me it taste so much better

By the way, did I tell you,  I was       "Mad"?

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ajb007/biggrin  I've just finished Col Sun ( again ) it's probably
The best of the continuing  novels and a great read.
One question though AS, have you not embraced
Electronic books ?  That way you could bring an entire
Bond library  with you.  ajb007/lol

“God has given you one face, and you make yourself another"

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Re: A new Anthony Horowitz Bond novel...

Thunderpussy wrote:

ajb007/biggrin  I've just finished Col Sun ( again ) it's probably
The best of the continuing  novels and a great read.
One question though AS, have you not embraced
Electronic books ?  That way you could bring an entire
Bond library  with you.  ajb007/lol

Hi Tp electronic books . . ? Where would I plug the extension lead in .i can just about manage with a I pad , my eye sight isn't what it was . At the moment I'm learning , just in case my eye sight goes completely Broille ,I'm sorry I'll just feel that again .

By the way, did I tell you,  I was       "Mad"?

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Here's the Sunday Times review of Forever and a Day:

How Bond became 007: Anthony Horowitz takes us right back to the origins of Ian Fleming's famous hero (May 20)

by David Mills

If you have ever worried why James Bond prefers his martinis shaken rather than the more orthodox stirred, or wondered where he got his gun-metal cigarette case from, or why he buys his fags from Morland, then this is the book for you.

After the lacklustre run of Bond sequels by John Gardner and Raymond Benson, 10 years ago the Fleming Estate reinvigorated the franchise by commissioning Sebastian Faulks to write a new 007 adventure. Faulks had the inspired idea to set Devil May Care in 1967. This promising start was spoilt by their next commission, the American Jeffery Deaver, whose Carte Blanche takes place in 2011. Next up, William Boyd went historical again with Solo, featuring a marvellously irritable, middle-aged Bond in 1969.

The baton passed to Anthony Horowitz in 2015. He stuck with the past and set the frenetic Trigger Mortis in 1957, immediately following on from Fleming's Goldfinger. His latest effort goes back to 1950 and is a prequel to the first Bond novel, Casino Royale. In comic book terms, then, it's an "origins story": so we learn how Bond got his "Double-O" status as well as the answers to those other vital questions.

Sadly it's very formulaic. Anyone who has read more than a couple of the post-Fleming Bond novels knows that we are going to get references to his knitted tie, love of scrambled eggs and heather honey, Scottish housekeeper, scarred cheek, moccasin shoes… There's (much, much) more but that's enough. Then there's the customary sequence of scenes — meeting with M, travel to foreign location, hang out in casino, drink martini, have sex, sneak up on installation that turns out not to be an innocent industrial concern after all but the heart of the villain's dastardly enterprise heavily guarded by goons in logoed uniforms, where, of course, Bond is spotted and causes havoc while escaping.

Oh yes, and there's a grotesque baddie, in this instance a horribly fat Corsican gangster called Scipio. We learn early on that he likes to "pulverise his enemies using his own weight and body mass" — no prizes for guessing whom Scipio will end up torturing in his signature style before the end.

The novel opens with "So, 007 is dead". A Savile Row-suited body is pulled out of a dock in Marseilles (oh you tease, Mr Horowitz) and a new agent is sent to investigate. This is his replacement, the young James Bond. The elements of the mystery are that the heroin supply, run by Corsican gangsters, seems to have dried up, and a mysterious freelance agent known as "Madame 16", who worked for the British during the war, is on the scene, as well as a super-rich American industrialist.

Exposition is clunkingly shovelled in: "Quickly, Bond examined the other players" signals a run through of characters at the gaming table; "James Bond thought about the man he had come to kill" introduces two pages of background information. There are moments so clumsy, you groan: "Chimiques is French for chemicals," says one fluent French speaker to another. A French baker meets a woman "who calls herself Madame 16": no, she is "Sixtine"; to a French baker "16" would make her Madame Seize. Bond stands "well out of her line of vision" yet still manages to notice "a flicker of excitement in Sixtine's eyes".

Then Bond has the bad luck to be caught out by a small, poor Corsican boy who went deaf aged six, but "could lip-read in three languages". What are the odds? Still, if you can put all that behind you, it is a fun read — the well-worked-out plot is nicely twisting, even managing a surprise at the end, and there's also some original, unpublished Fleming material in one chapter. Horowitz excels at action sequences and more than a third of the novel is taken up with car chases, shoot-outs, fights and explosions, so it's by no means all bad.

The next book needs to get away from the Bond checklist and formulaic structure. Fleming was much freer with his creation. Bond is absent for the first third of From Russia, with Love; The Spy Who Loved Me is narrated by a Canadian woman trapped by gangsters in a New England motel, until a passing stranger (guess who?) chances to drop by and sort them out; in the short story Quantum of Solace, Bond merely listens to an account of an unhappy marriage.

The character is so established that the novels no longer need the props and clichéd scenes. So, if Horowitz has had enough, they should try a more adventurous writer — Jon McGregor, David Peace, or Sarah Waters — that would stir 007 up, or should it be shake?

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Not reading that, as I haven't read the book yet. But I will later!

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Barbel wrote:

Not reading that, as I haven't read the book yet. But I will later!

Don't worry, it doesn't have any spoilers.

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I think Anthony Horowitz is a good solid writer, and is a safe pair of hands.

“God has given you one face, and you make yourself another"

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But I don't like the idea of the villan torturing Bond by sitting on him  ajb007/lol

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Re: A new Anthony Horowitz Bond novel...

Do you agree with the reviewer when he says the authors should take more chances and be less bound by tradition?
I think he has a point. "High time to kill" wasn't perfect, but I liked how he set most of the novel during a climbing expedition.

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I hated " High time to kill "  ajb007/mad

“God has given you one face, and you make yourself another"

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The writing was bad, the consept was good.

But do you think the Bond authors should be less bound by tradition?

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Only my opinion, I don't mind change. After all everthing has to evolve to survive.
Although you should never make the mistake of throwing out the baby with the bath water

“God has given you one face, and you make yourself another"

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Fleming tried to shake things up in TSWLM, FRWL and QoS. It would be nice if the continuation authors did that once in a while too.

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To be fair, I think they have tried but within the limits that IFP have set them. Horowitz, IMHO, has been the most successful in the period since they stopped using one continuous author (and possibly even including them- Gardner did comment on the restrictions placed upon him).
All of the continuation authors have been in the same situation: they are not Ian Fleming. While there is a definite Fleming formula (which I freely confess to loving), he didn't always stick to it as N24 alludes to above. It's the prerogative of an author to do so, of course, and sometimes the results were outstanding (FRWL) and sometimes more divisive (TSWLM). The continuation authors don't have that freedom.

(And I'm done with this thread until I've read Horowitz's latest- I'm scared of spoilers!)

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Re: A new Anthony Horowitz Bond novel...

Being his first mission, the formula is needed, that he meet M for the first time, get his mission, carry it out. Anything beyond that should be up in the air. He could devote two-thirds of the book to the villain or the girl, but that was risky even when Fleming was doing it. You had better make sure to make a compelling villain. This day and age the girl would need to be action driven rather than a damsel-in-distress. The truth is the formula is what people have been craving for in the movies. the old ones could cram so much more adventure and plot into it, but now they are trying for every mission to be unique and somehow personal to bond. He has to either come back from the dead or meet his long lost brother or avenge his girlfriend's death.

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I hated Devil May Care, really enjoyed Carte Blanche (especially on the second read), and was so let down by Solo that, after deciding that they should stop setting Bond in the 50s/60s, I didn’t even read Trigger Morris until two months ago. But I actually liked Trigger Morris. It wasn’t spectacular, but if IFP insists upon doing period pieces, it was probably the best we can expect.

That said, I’m totally up in the air about this book because I’m so burnt out by origin stories. Do we need to know why Bond likes knitted ties, shaken martinis, and scrambled eggs? I don’t think so, but I’ll reserve judgement. I’m still looking forward to reading it.

Last edited by Miles Messervy (23rd May 2018 02:41)

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https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/ … itz-review
Another review from the guardian.

“God has given you one face, and you make yourself another"

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Of the one-term authors, 3) Carte Blanche, 2) Trigger Mortis, 1) Solo,  though I confess to not having read Devil May Care or Colonel Sun yet.

<spoilers>
Carte Blanche was okay but too drawn out. I remember the villain is really into recycling and they make the state of decay a fetish so he gets off to his wife getting older over time. Haha.

Solo - the only criticism i have is that like Carte Blanche, it makes the mistake of assuming it will get a sequel and sets up mysteries that never come to fruition. A great character study for Bond in his later years that reads like a Noir rather than action.

Trigger Mortis has great action but the plot points don't connect. Pussy Galore and Goldfinger's leftover henchmen have nothing to do with the plot to kill Sterling Moss, and the plot to kill Sterling had nothing to do with the plot to detonate a rocket over a crowded populace. Mr. Sin is a classic villain that suffers from Dr. No syndrome. His sob story is actually based on a true story that I remember from somewhere like the Rape of Nanking. The dumbest part is when Bond takes time out from stopping Armageddon to non-lethally pacify a henchmen who claims to have a family and was just following orders. This speaks nothing for the Nazi party.

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Shatterfang wrote:

...I confess to not having read Devil May Care or Colonel Sun yet..

Colonel Sun is the only one you really should read, all the rest are for completists. There are so many better books out there and life is too short.

Shatterfang wrote:

Solo - the only criticism I have is that like Carte Blanche, it makes the mistake of assuming it will get a sequel and sets up mysteries that never come to fruition.

is this true? did the three authors who only got one book each think they would be invited back for a sequel? was Horowitz finally asked back for a second because he was the only one generally deemed a success? ironically his second book by definition cannot possibly be a sequel.

Shatterfang wrote:

Trigger Mortis has great action but the plot points don't connect. Pussy Galore and Goldfinger's leftover henchmen have nothing to do with the plot to kill Sterling Moss, and the plot to kill Sterling had nothing to do with the plot to detonate a rocket over a crowded populace.

I like the episodic structure, it is one of the clever things I think Horowitz achieved. Murder on Wheels is a leftover from For Your Eyes Only, so Horowitz's completed version is more like one episode out of a book of further short stories. He just finds a tenuous way to link his three stories together.

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I was just able to order the U.K. version from the US store with a May 31 delivery date...


https://s9.postimg.cc/kmz7v3lgb/EE8_C8_FB1-5_F59-44_F4-9_DA2-_CFE8_F6842405.png

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Ny birthday is on June the 6th, so I'm hoping one of my sisters will make the book  gift  ajb007/bond

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I hope you've dropped a few heavy hints  ajb007/wink

“God has given you one face, and you make yourself another"

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I have to wait until they start asking what I'd like. You know how subtle I am  ajb007/embarrassed

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it is hard to say because i still like all of them that i have read and wouldn't say life is too short to read them. <spoilers> yep, Carte Blanche sets up the Steel Cartridge syndicate as a mystery organization and that Monique Declaroix Bond may or may not have worked for the secret service, as a steel cartridge is placed on her death indicating the mountain climbing fall was no accident. And in Solo there is a big heroin plot that is never fully wrapped up and a very good disfigured villain Kobus Breed lives to get revenge another day. Though Ian Fleming said in the Diamond Smugglers that not everything is neatly resolved in spy fiction.