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Forever and a Death by Donald E. Westlake

Forever and a Death (edition 2017)

by Donald E. Westlake (Author)

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Title:Forever and a Death
Authors:Donald E. Westlake (Author)
Info:Hard Case Crime (2017), Edition: No Additional Printings Listed, 240 pages
Collections:Your library, Currently reading
Tags:James Bond

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Forever and a Death by Donald E. Westlake



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Westlake Writes Bond -Sort Of

Forever and a Death was originally a treatment by Westlake for a new Bond movie in the mid 90's to follow Goldeneye. Although the movie was not made, Westlake turned the treatment into a novelization. Now finally Hard Case Crime has posthumously published Westlake's novel as one of its infamous lost novels.

Westlake put a lot of different elements into this story starting with a Bond-type mega-villain who runs a corporate empire and has hundreds of guys working to bring his mad schemes to fruition. It is probably a bit light on the Bond girls with the only female character being a young environmentalist and diver, Kim. There's mad scientist schemes, revenge schemes, man on the run themes, a sardonic sense of humor, and a race against time to the climax at the end.

It is quite readable although it suffers from unnecessary length. A shorter, more terse, compact story would probably have been more satisfying. Part of the length though is the circumstances of it having been developed out of a movie treatment rather than having been conceived as a novel in the first place. ( )
  DaveWilde | Sep 22, 2017 |
So, apparently, Donald Westlake was once asked to write a screenplay for a Bond film. When it was done, it hit some political nerves, so was not used. Westlake turned it into a novel, but never published it. Now, 10 years after his death, it is published.

Westlake's Dortmunder series is one of my absolute favorite ones (the books, not the movies made from them.) His other novels are hit and miss for me, though he pretty consistently won all kinds of awards for them. The man could write. Forever and a Death is in the non-Dortmunder part of Westlake's repertoire, and so far, has not won me over. I like Westlake. I like James Bond. Hopefully, at some point, the combo will click for me.
  bookczuk | Sep 14, 2017 |
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Two decades ago, the producers of the James Bond movies hired legendary crime novelist Donald E. Westlake to come up with a story for the next Bond film. The plot Westlake dreamed up--about a Western businessman seeking revenge after being kicked out of Hong Kong when the island was returned to Chinese rule--had all the elements of a classic Bond adventure, but political concerns kept it from being made. Never one to let a good story go to waste, Westlake wrote an original novel based on the premise instead--a novel he never published while he was alive.… (more)

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