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 SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013

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General Yuskovich
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Sun Aug 04, 2013 4:50 am

I think we'll get more of a traditional Bond novel again with a twist. A sort of literary version of LTK from what I've heard so far.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Sun Aug 04, 2013 9:41 pm








First two are the UK edition with and without its dust-jacket, and the unfortunately somewhat duller-looking third is the US edition.
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Walecs
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Sun Aug 04, 2013 11:56 pm

I must be honest, my eyes literally hurt when I look at the US edition.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Aug 05, 2013 12:09 am

Bloody hell. The US cover looks like pinstriped baby vomit.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Aug 05, 2013 1:48 am

CJB wrote:
Bloody hell. The US cover looks like pinstriped baby vomit.

:lol!: 
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:09 am

Looks like it was designed by a freshman art student.

All of these covers are underwhelming.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Aug 05, 2013 5:13 am

The covers are underwhelming, but they're better than the US editions of DEVIL MAY CARE and CARTE BLANCHE.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Aug 05, 2013 6:05 am

Now to see them unveiled aboard HMS Belfast (or other Royal Navy vessel) by tightly clad models with bemused author looking quite proud of himself.

:*e*: 
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Aug 05, 2013 6:28 am

Is that what they'll be doing? laugh


The photos of Deaver during his Bond book unveiling were interesting. From what I remember, he looked like he was still half-bombed from the night before. I'd guess that was why he was leaning against a Bentley and the model next to him.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Aug 05, 2013 6:34 am

No, they're not doing that :) I just keep picturing the Devil May Care unveiling. Just...

I imagine some kind of big show will be put on.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Aug 05, 2013 6:40 am

For my curiosity I went a-googling and found this from the BookBond website.


Quote :
Boyd on Bond

William Boyd marks publication of new James Bond novel

with major event at

Southbank Centre, London

Thursday 26 September 2013

7.30pm

International bestselling author William Boyd will discuss his thrilling new James Bond novel, Solo, for the first time in public at a major event at the Queen Elizabeth Hall at London’s Southbank Centre, on Thursday 26 September, the day of publication.

Boyd, in conversation with GQ literary editor, Olivia Cole, will discuss Ian Fleming and his experience of writing about the world’s most iconic spy. Introducing the event will be special guest, Lucy Fleming, Ian Fleming’s niece.

Combining all the glamour and excitement of Ian Fleming’s original novels with masterful storytelling, Solo is a stylish, period novel set in 1969, featuring 007 as a veteran agent at 45. Spanning three continents, Bond’s new mission takes an unexpected turn whilst in Africa, forcing him to go ‘solo’.

William Boyd is the author of 14 novels including Any Human Heart and Restless and has won several awards, including the Costa Book Award and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize.

He will be signing copies of Solo after the event.

so...the humourist in me sees with the South Bank Centre being upon the Thames a speedboat still in play.

And Boris Johnson profitting somehow from the event...
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:59 am

Amazon (US) has some review blurbs, including this one, which illuminates the story a bit:

""Anyone wishing this autumn to enjoy the Cold War with the assurance of a happy ending should seek out William Boyd's new James Bond novel, Solo, in which 007 is dispatched to West Africa and the fictitious country of Zanzarim, where he finds himself in the midst of a civil war."
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Sun Sep 22, 2013 5:55 am

http://www.thebookbond.com/2013/09/james-bond-drives-jensen-in-solo.html?spref=fb


Bond drives a Jensen and is in bed with a beautiful woman by page 86.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Sun Sep 22, 2013 5:58 am

If you get The Times today, there is an interview with William Boyd as well as the first part of Chapter One of Solo in the magazine that comes with the paper.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Sun Sep 22, 2013 9:20 am

I read the first chapter excerpt in the Times today and I'm a-liking what I see, it at the very least reads well. I'll hold on to read the book when it comes out but it's a mark-up on Deaver's.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Thu Sep 26, 2013 7:29 am

Some kind soul has reprinted the long Times interview with Boyd: http://jimidisu.com/?p=3842

Boyd comes off well, whereas the interviewer is a smug dunce who repeatedly tries to get Boyd to denounce Fleming.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Thu Sep 26, 2013 7:31 am

Did dislike the interview. Fleming wasn't perfect but as you say the interviewer was a tad smug.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:52 pm

Bond studied oriental languages at Cambridge.

Funny thing, this is fake both in the books and in the movies.
As Boyd said, Fleming's Bond didn't attend university; in the You Only Live Twice movie, Bond says he studied oriental languages at Cambridge, however in YOLT (movie), he never speaks oriental languages, while in TND Bond is unable to use the chinese keyboard (as explained in the latter's novelization, Bond lied to Moneypenny, but he had never studied oriental languages).
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:02 am

Has any brave soul here read the book?
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:06 am

Largo's Shark wrote:
Has any brave soul here read the book?
Blunters brought it. I might wait to see if it comes into the library soon though my local library is still awaiting electricity.

Short answer: No, I've not read it yet

whistle 
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:07 am

I'll wait for everyone's input first.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:12 am

I've just read some terrible reviews over at the thread on MI6Com.

This post caught my attention.

Quote :
I also attended Thursday's launch event and although I felt Boyd's interview with Olivia Cole was a little mechanical and didn't bring anything new, it didn't dampen my enthusiasm and by the time I was on the train home, I was even starting to like the cover.
By the time I'd left Waterloo, I'd finished the first chapter and from there on in, I only stopped turning the pages to sleep, walk the dog and play tennis until I finished it last night.
Must have been a gripper then?
If only — my page turning was driven by pure shock. I simply couldn't believe how a supposedly renowned author could make such a pigs breakfast out of things and having finished Solo, my overwhelming feeling is one of complete sadness. It's like I've just experienced the literary death of a character I've loved for forty nine years and have slipped into mourning.
In my opinion, Boyd has just trousered the cash and done us over. The plot is absolutely farcical. It begins with Bond receiving a cardboard briefing from 'M' (these exchanges were always a high point in any Bond read — not here, it's virtually like they don't know each other) and from there we are just taken from one stupid incident to another.
@Bentley mentioned what he called the "Home Invasion Scene" and it is a good example of what we have to put up with but there are many others — when he takes our hero to Washington, we are asked to believe that he is stupid enough to walk into the wrong neighbourhood (not too bright this Bond) and beats up three would be muggers in the most unbelievable fashion. The book is riddled with the ridiculous and to be honest I can't think of a saving grace.
Guns, girls, cars, violence and glamorous places are Bonds stock in trade and it is pretty clear to me that within the context of this example Boyd has little enthusiasm for any of the aforementioned — at one point he even has him donning a cream shirt with a pale blue knitted tie - unbelievable!
I do think that when this turkey does the rounds it could be the death nel because although Bond fans like us will be offended and then talk about what went wrong. A casual reader would probably bin it after forty pages. When you consider it is competing this month with new books from the likes of Robert Harris and Frederick Forsyth any Solo sales will be down to the Bond name and after the Faulks/Deaver debacle there has to be limit to how many times IFP can insult people by allowing our icon to be abused in such a cynical way.
Save your money!
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:26 am

The Guardian review by Robert McCrum is positive. "A brilliant imitation that's occasionally superior to Ian Fleming's prototype." http://www.theguardian.com/books/2013/sep/25/william-boyd-solo-success-new-james-bond-mission

The Standard review by David Sexton is negative. "A rather inattentive novel." "A pretty confusing resolution." "Lame outing."
http://www.standard.co.uk/arts/book/book-review-solo-a-james-bond-novel-by-william-boyd--more-tots-that-plot-or-even-totty-8840874.html

The Bookseller review by Cathy Rentzenbrink is extremely positive. "An excellent and absorbing spy story."
http://www.thebookseller.com/news/william-boyds-solo-reviewed.html

The Daily Mail review by Geoffrey Wansell is positive. "Boyd brings back the real Bond, triumphantly."
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2432833/Solo-William-Boyd-review-Hurrah-James-Bonds-ruthless-bed-hopping-best.html

The Telegraph review by Jon Stock is mixed-negative. "The book gets bogged down in an increasingly convoluted plot [though] there's much to enjoy."
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/crimeandthrilerbookreviews/10334573/Solo-by-William-Boyd-review.html

The National (Abu Dhabi) review by Nick Leech is negative. "A pedantic, meandering narrative [...] and underwhelming finale." http://www.thenational.ae/new-bond-novel-fails-to-stir

The Independent review by Boyd Tonkin is mostly positive. http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/reviews/book-review-solo-by-william-boyd-8841756.html

The Financial Times review by Ludovic Hunter-Tilney is positive. "Expertly plotted. The twists are genuinely surprising and the chief baddie (a disfigured Rhodesian mercenary who impales his victims on fish hooks) is suitably grotesque." http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/3ba1dda6-25fd-11e3-aee8-00144feab7de.html#axzz2g7wqFfYW

The Scotland Herald review by Hugh Macdonald is very positive. "Glorious [and] meticulously constructed." http://www.heraldscotland.com/books-poetry/reviews/william-boyd-solo-a-james-bond-novel-jonathan-cape.22249511

David Robinson in the Scotsman approves of the book, though he hasn't really written a review per se. "William Boyd does a superb job." http://www.scotsman.com/lifestyle/books/william-boyd-on-writing-his-first-james-bond-novel-1-3115998

David Connett's review in The Express is negative, concluding: "Despite the marketing ballyhoo the last thing you should do is buy this synthetic substitute which only serves to bring both Bond and Boyd into disrepute."
http://www.express.co.uk/entertainment/books/433103/Book-Review-Solo-by-William-Boyd
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Sep 30, 2013 1:53 pm

It makes no sense that the reviews are so polarized. I suspect that the ones who like it are paid to like it. I will trust the Bond fans before some corporate reviewers.
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PostSubject: Re: SOLO by William Boyd ::: September 26, 2013   Mon Sep 30, 2013 2:47 pm

I wonder what the game plan will be after this. IFP clearly hasn't had any over the last three authors, more interested in nabbing high profile authors than looking for someone who has the right sensibilities. What a mess.
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