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jet set willy
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PostSubject: Carte Blanche reviews   Thu May 26, 2011 6:16 pm

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tiffanywint
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Thu May 26, 2011 7:13 pm

Thanks for those links Willy. I wouldn't have likley stumbled across them on this side of the ocean, at least not without a web search but you served them up on a silver platter.
I am encouraged by both reviews. I take Jeremy Jehru review in the Guardian with a grain of salt. He's not too Bond smart. One of the guys in the comments section called him out, regarding his claim that Deaver was the first American to write Bond.
"Jeremy needs to do his research. Raymond Benson, an author from Midland, Texas wrote 5 original novels and 3 film novelisations between 1997 and 2003. "

Actually the comment guy needs to do his research. Benson wrote 6 original Bond novels, not five.
Oh its so nice to be a Bond know-it-all and if I must knit-pick further, Benson's last Bond book was published in 2002 not 2003. So there! :study:

I am encouraged by the reviews. I like the detail in the Telegraph review. Nice to see classic Bondian elements such as deranged supervillain who lectures Bond in his big villain lair.
Felicity Willing. That works as a worthy addition to the pantheon of post Fleming Bond girls. I'm sure she is quite cheeky or exotic or something Bond girl worthy.
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jet set willy
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Sat May 28, 2011 1:46 am

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tiffanywint
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Sat May 28, 2011 7:57 am

" Yes, since Ian Fleming, the creator of 007, died in 1964 there have been no fewer than 24 novels continuing the exploits of the shaken-not-stirred British spy and now American author Jeffery Deaver has penned the 25th "
Read more: http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/249063/Bond-vs-Bourne-The-battle-of-the-spiesBond-vs-Bourne-The-battle-of-the-spies#ixzz1NaVwUweH


Where is she, Julie Carpenter, getting this 25th novel nonsense from. I count 14 John Gardners, 6 by Raymond Benson. That makes 20 plus Colonel Sun, John Pearson's Authorized Bond Biography ( another fictional adult Bond adventure but with the first person narrative twist) and Faulks lame effort of 3 years ago. That makes 23 books in the post-Fleming adult continuation series, not including the screenplay novelizatons which she is clearly not including either.

What is the 24th book pray tell? Where is she getting this erroneous info as I don't think she counted up the titles herself as us Bond know-it-alls can do :albino:

Deaver's book is the 24th. harrummph!

==="Bond: While the likes of Kingsley Amis, John Gardner and Sebastian Faulks have all furthered Bond’s adventures, Jeffery Deaver is the first non-Brit sanctioned by the Fleming estate to continue the series."
More bad info. Raymond Benson is quite American. Eye roll. The publisher's publicist needs to be fired. The journalists are no doubt getting all this bad info from the accompanying media releases.

==this part is interesting. Some intrigue regarding the death of Robert Ludlum.
"Ten years after his death in 2001, reportedly from a heart attack, his nephew and biographer Kenneth Kearns hired private investigators to look into the circumstances of his death which Kearns believes are suspicious."
Read more: http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/249063/Bond-vs-Bourne-The-battle-of-the-spiesBond-vs-Bourne-The-battle-of-the-spies#ixzz1Nabdpzl9

Aside from the bad info to media provided by the publishers, that's an interesting read. Well written. Bond comes off much more interesting than the Damon dullard Bourne.
I do like EVL's Bourne books so I'll check his latest out down the road, but Deaver's book comes first.


Last edited by tiffanywint on Sat May 28, 2011 8:14 am; edited 1 time in total
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Fairbairn-Sykes
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Sat May 28, 2011 8:11 am

Hey, at least it's better than the press when DMC came out, most of which insisted that Faulks' book was the first to continue Fleming's character as an adult in his original time period -- ignoring the existence of not only Gardner and Benson but Amis and Pearson as well.
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tiffanywint
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Sat May 28, 2011 8:17 am

Fairbairn-Sykes wrote:
Hey, at least it's better than the press when DMC came out, most of which insisted that Faulks' book was the first to continue Fleming's character as an adult in his original time period -- ignoring the existence of not only Gardner and Benson but Amis and Pearson as well.

You'd think Ian Fleming Publications could get a handle on their own licensed product.
Is Lucy Fleming to IFP what Babs is to Cubby's legacy?
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GeneralGogol
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Sat May 28, 2011 11:17 am

tiffanywint wrote:
Is Lucy Fleming to IFP what Babs is to Cubby's legacy?

Good analogy! Although, it's harder to draw conclusions because the literary industry seems a lot more secretive.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Sun May 29, 2011 10:01 am

GeneralGogol wrote:
tiffanywint wrote:
Is Lucy Fleming to IFP what Babs is to Cubby's legacy?

Good analogy! Although, it's harder to draw conclusions because the literary industry seems a lot more secretive.
True. Its just kind of maddening that whoever puts out the IFP press releases doesn't have a handle on the history of post-Fleming Bond books, especially when IFP and its predecessor Glidrose had to license them all.

Actually Eon is far superior in this respect. Michael G. Wilson knows the Bond film series cold as well as Fleming's books. Nothing's gone down with the Eon film series that MGW isn't aware of. Eon under MGW is very much aware of its history.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Wed Jun 01, 2011 10:11 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Thu Jun 02, 2011 5:57 am

I bought it today, flicked through the first few pages and it drew me in. Which Devil May Care failed to do. Although I'm feeling the need to try Devil May Care again, simply because it feels somehow wrong to read Carte Blanche before Devil May Care.

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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Thu Jun 02, 2011 6:10 am

The only detail that has me antsy is this whole "Bond's on twitter" thing -- it feels like a rerun of "M does yoga" from DMC -- a cutesy detail thrown in only for the lolz with no real backing in character.
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tiffanywint
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Fri Jun 03, 2011 3:47 pm

June 15th is the day we get to sample this momentous literary event, here in the colonies. Is Deaver going to launch over here with the same fanfare as he did in London, I wonder?
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Tue Jun 07, 2011 3:00 pm

Fairbairn-Sykes wrote:
The only detail that has me antsy is this whole "Bond's on twitter" thing -- it feels like a rerun of "M does yoga" from DMC -- a cutesy detail thrown in only for the lolz with no real backing in character.

I haven't opened my copy yet, but I could imagine Bond being on twitter... he'd have no followers, locked security etc, but I could picture a modern version of Fleming's Bond following things like newspapers, LIFE/TIME, The Economist, to enhance his reading list.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Tue Jun 07, 2011 11:59 pm

Yeah, I could see that, too, Vesper. Bond was interested in technology and he was hardly averse to jumping on the trend-wagon.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Wed Jun 08, 2011 12:37 pm

I'm only 13 very short chapters in but I'm enjoying it so far. I haven't read Fleming in a long while, but as far as "reboots" go thus far it's far better conceptually than anything in Casino Royale (the film).

Plus, M aka The Admiral doesn't do yoga and neither of the villains appear to have monkey paws for hands. Always a plus.
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Louis Armstrong
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Wed Jun 08, 2011 2:07 pm

Still waiting for Brown to say that Bond being on twitter means he's acting like a silly teenage bitch.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:19 am

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Fairbairn-Sykes
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Sat Jun 11, 2011 6:18 am

Good read! The post, that is, not Carte Blanche, which I still haven't read yet!!
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Wed Jun 15, 2011 11:00 am

Well, it was a thoroughly enjoyable read with some exciting twists littered with surprises that were most welcome albeit a couple of which I was able to guess. It was refreshing to read a Bond book with a plot that was absent of relative simplicity unlike Fleming’s and Benson’s stories. I have never minded however about the straightforward plots in the books and films as it’s everything that revolves around these stories that interest me. Hydt is a most chilling, original character with his perverse love of decaying bodies and I was particularly intrigued with his reasons behind his interest in Jessica. Dunne is a worthy adversary. I enjoyed the Fleming homages and the sub plot about Bond’s parents is compelling. I hope it will be expanded on further in the series. While it gave me pleasure reading about Mathis and Leiter, the latter's presence really wasn’t required. The amusing phone conversation between Maidstone and Bond at the conclusion of the novel is reminiscent of Bond’s meeting in the park with Gala Brand in Moonraker.

The problem with Carte Blanche is that with Deaver’s Bond we are only given a mere glimpse of our hero. Gone are Bond’s cynicism, the subtle melancholy and his brooding nature. The Bond in Carte Blanche is unfortunately almost one dimensional and mechanical. He’s less confrontational and his tendency to have a bit of a temper has almost vanished although he does seem slightly more like Fleming’s creation in the last quarter of the novel which is heightened in the last few pages. I liked the way Bond romanticised about the source of the boat horn.

The book is well thought out, including much detail in the tradecraft of spying and unlike Lee Child; Deaver’s sentences are more rounded and eloquent I feel. The quick paced writing works very well in the action scenes which are most exciting but a little more description is required in the slower sections - the landscape Bond sees from the plane and car and his opinion of it and what was Bond wearing in the last half of the novel? Part of what I love about Fleming’s books and sections of Gardner’s work is that we were allowed the chance to really soak up the atmosphere. Deaver must also invite us into Bond’s thought process to a much greater extent. I realise he wants to write fast paced novels to appeal to his regular fans but this doesn’t always work in a Bond novel. I think a balance must be found.

I wouldn’t be adverse to Deaver returning to write another but he must flesh out the character of Bond considerably more! This is imperative. He should study the original Bond’s personality and identify what gets under his skin. What are his weaknesses and vulnerabilities? At the conclusion of his first meeting with Jordaan, when out of earshot Bond would have said “bitch” out loud as he did following his first run in with Domino in Thunderball. In the Gardner books I felt like I was reading about our man most of the time as I did in Benson’s otherwise failed literary efforts but in Carte Blanche I could have almost been reading about any chap who just happened to share the same name as Bond, with the same background history and interests with a Scottish housekeeper called May. In terms of his car, I’m glad he drives a Bentley but I feel a model from the 1950’s or 60’s would have been more appropriate. Afterall, in the 50’s, Fleming had Bond drive a 1930’s Bentley.

For the third book I think I would welcome the return of a more traditional Bond story but for the second I wouldn’t be opposed once more to a book like Deaver has given us - something very much in the vein of contemporary crime thrillers, but our protagonist must be the man who we all got to know and love in Fleming’s yarns! The odd change is fine. I was happy with Bond’s alcohol intake in CB and his racism can remain a thing of the past but the remainder of his personality should predominantly remain intact with perhaps a subtle hint of chauvinism. :) He doesn’t have to be perfect. Fleming’s Bond is far from this.

If you remove Bond from the equation, as I said the book itself is most engaging with a welcome sense of realism in parts. I couldn’t wait to open it up each day (I want to check out Garden of Beasts and other Deaver novels now). It did seem to miss our hero to a large extent though.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Wed Jun 15, 2011 3:30 pm

Great thoughts, Bounine! I love that you always keep the retention of Bond's core personality in focus. It's something subtle from Fleming that's so essential to the flavour and enjoyment of his novels, far more than the stories, but that most modern interpretations completely lose.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Sat Jun 18, 2011 9:43 am

Thanks Fairbairn. Thought I would chuck in a brief, casual account of my sentiments.

It’s nice to see all the positive reviews. The trend I have noticed in such reviews however are that they tend to overlook the absence of Bond’s CORE personality. Just because Bond’s background history and interests remain intact it’s not enough to convince me that we are reading about the same man. Moreover, the fact that he exists in another period is irrelevant in terms of his essential personality except for affecting his chauvinism and racist tendencies. I don’t mind if these things are no longer there.

This is all coming from someone who embraces the continuation books. I am not one of those people who refuses to pick up a non Fleming book or writes off such books just because the style is too different to that of the original creator. I really enjoyed Carte Blanch but it’s major demerit is that much of the time I didn't feel like I was reading about Bond. I am open to Deaver returning to write another because he is a talented man but I do feel he needs to get inside the character of Bond more. There’s no denying the fact that he requires greater fleshing out.

Have you read the book? If so, what do you think of it?
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:40 pm

Nice review Bounine.
Quote :
While it gave me pleasure reading about Mathis and Leiter, the latter's presence really wasn’t required.
Nice to see Deaver had the class to rescue contemporary Mathis from the dumpster.
Too bad Deaver didn't get inside the character more. As you point out Gardner did a decent job in that respect, but Fleming did lay it all out for future writers.
Personally I like Bond to be written as very dangerous, even ruthless, when the situation call for it and to be instantly recognizable as a very dangerous man, to those who are in tune with such things.
I did like the way Fleming described Bond from Vivienne''s perspective in TSWLM.
At first she thought Bond was another gangster as he gave off similar killer vibes. Viv's innocense was lost by the time she encountered Bond. Her danger-men radar had been well tuned by that point, from her dealings with Sluggsy and Horror.

===I still haven't picked up the book but not for lack of trying. I went to buy it today at Chapters Indigo, big midtown location, with the in-store Starbucks and two big levels...but they were sold out!!!!!!!!!!!!You figure these big stores would have lots of copies.The Manager suggested they might have miscalculated the demand. They've got more on order. The book has been out a week, so I was kinda tardy about getting out to get it but still I've never had any trouble getting a hardcover that had only been out a week. The Bond fans must have snapped up the initial copies.This store didn't calculate that Bond has a loyal following. There will always be an initial run on a Bond book, even if demand levels off after. Compare with the Faulks book which was everywhere but the grocery store checkout counter. I was practically tripping over it in HMV, bookstores etc.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Wed Jun 22, 2011 4:12 pm

tiffanywint wrote:
===I still haven't picked up the book but not for lack of trying. I went to buy it today at Chapters Indigo, big midtown location, with the in-store Starbucks and two big levels...but they were sold out!!!!!!!!!!!!

If you search for Carte Blanche on Indigo's website, they show you how many books are left at each location.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Thu Jun 23, 2011 9:16 am

Thanks. Its just that I hate to make a special trip to buy anything. This location is the only one that is conveniently located. I'll wait till they re-stock. I can check this store without going out of my way. With the advance of the digital age, old school music and bookstores are slowly becoming an endangered species. There seem to be less and less of them. Even the big HMV at this mid-town location is going out of business. Now I will have no music store within walking distance and only this bookstore, but I am part of the problem. I do 90% of my music buying on-line because the prices are generally better. But I've always liked the physical locations for browsing even if I don't buy.
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PostSubject: Re: Carte Blanche reviews   Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:34 pm

tiffanywint wrote:
Nice review Bounine.
Quote :
While it gave me pleasure reading about Mathis and Leiter, the latter's presence really wasn’t required.
Nice to see Deaver had the class to rescue contemporary Mathis from the dumpster.
Too bad Deaver didn't get inside the character more. As you point out Gardner did a decent job in that respect, but Fleming did lay it all out for future writers.
Personally I like Bond to be written as very dangerous, even ruthless, when the situation call for it and to be instantly recognizable as a very dangerous man, to those who are in tune with such things.
I did like the way Fleming described Bond from Vivienne''s perspective in TSWLM.
At first she thought Bond was another gangster as he gave off similar killer vibes. Viv's innocense was lost by the time she encountered Bond. Her danger-men radar had been well tuned by that point, from her dealings with Sluggsy and Horror.

===I still haven't picked up the book but not for lack of trying. I went to buy it today at Chapters Indigo, big midtown location, with the in-store Starbucks and two big levels...but they were sold out!!!!!!!!!!!!You figure these big stores would have lots of copies.The Manager suggested they might have miscalculated the demand. They've got more on order. The book has been out a week, so I was kinda tardy about getting out to get it but still I've never had any trouble getting a hardcover that had only been out a week. The Bond fans must have snapped up the initial copies.This store didn't calculate that Bond has a loyal following. There will always be an initial run on a Bond book, even if demand levels off after. Compare with the Faulks book which was everywhere but the grocery store checkout counter. I was practically tripping over it in HMV, bookstores etc.

Cheers tiffanywint. The lack of Bond's character development is quite disappointing.

Yes, it was particularly interesting reading about Bond from Viviane’s perspective.

You could always order CB from Amazon.
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