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Devil May Care by Sebastian Faulks

Devil May Care

by Sebastian Faulks

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Sebastian Faulks is widely accepted as one of our leading literary novelists, and regular listeners of BBC Radio 4's "The Write Stuff" will be familiar with his great ability to mimic other writers' styles. In this "authorised" addition to the James Bond canon he clearly mimic's Ian Fleming's style, though I imagine it must have been difficult for an author as fine as Faulks to lower himself to that extent.

I recently read William Boyd's contribution to the Bond oeuvre and although that also fell beyond Boyd's normal high standards, it was still more coherent as a book thgan Faulks' offering. I was decidedly disappointed by this novel - it just seemed too much like Fleming's originals which, to be fair, I enjoyed when I was fourteen Still, I enjoyed 10cc and Queen then too, though I am glad to be able to say that I have grown out of them now. ( )
  Eyejaybee | Nov 4, 2013 |
This is classic Bond (whereas Carte Blanche by Jeffery Deaver was a definitely "modern" interpretation) : the protagonist is charming but callous, the action, taking place in the heart of Cold-War years, feels old-fashioned, and the female characters are suitably (and literally) interchangeable. This is not a bad novel, by any means, but I preferred Casino Royale by Fleming himself, and Deaver's update. ( )
  JRuel | Mar 15, 2013 |
Typical Bond yarn yet below Mr. Faulks usual offerings. ( )
  rsummer | Jan 21, 2013 |
This James Bond novel, commissioned to mark the centenary of Ian Fleming's birth, has Bond in France, Italy, and Iran, pursuing a mysterious drug-smuggler with (of course) a grandiose plan for semi-global destruction. Set in the 1960s, the book has style and better-than-average characters, while paying homage to tropes from the original Fleming novels and the various films (for example, the reliable local MI6 operative who inevitably dies doing their duty to the empire; or the vicious henchman who Bond must defeat before the final confrontation with the boss). There is, however, one twist involving the love interest -- so far-fetched, so implausible even within the Bond-world of impossible feats and to-be-overlooked plot holes -- that I groaned when it arrived. To say it diminished enjoyment of the book as a whole would be silly; but it did promptly eject me from the suspension of disbelief that Faulks' writing otherwise mostly sustained. ( )
  bezoar44 | Aug 12, 2012 |
fast @beach@ read, amusing (& predictably misogynistic), but movie-script-like. Suitable 14+, b/c of s/d/r&r content. ( )
  celerydog | Mar 16, 2012 |
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To the memory of Ian Fleming and to Fali Vakeel who, when he and I were schoolboys, first introduced me to Bond
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It was a wet evening in Paris.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0385524285, Hardcover)

A Quiz

Q: Although James Bond is regarded by many as the quintessential English hero, he is actually not English. What is his nationality in the books?
A: He is half Scottish and half Swiss. He also hates that most English of drinks, tea--and describes it as 'mud'!

Q: Bond has had many famous incarnations on the big screen but, prior to these, he was first played on the radio by which British actor and game show host?
A: Bob Holness of Blockbusters fame

Q: Which Bond villain shares a birthday with his creator?
A: Ernst Stavro Blofeld. On Her Majesty's Secret Service reveals that Blofeld was born on 28 May 1908. Ian Lancaster Fleming entered the world on the same day at 7 Green Street in London.

Q: Which American President was a big fan of the Fleming novels?
A: President John F. Kennedy. Kennedy was known to be a big fan of Fleming and listed From Russia With Love as one of his top 10 favourite books. Bizarrely, both Kennedy and his assassin Lee Harvey Oswald are believed to have been reading Bond novels the night before Kennedy was killed.

Q: Which famed children’s author helped Ian Fleming adapt his children's adventure story Chitty Chitty Bang Bang for the big screen?
A: Roald Dahl

Q: Where did Fleming write all his Bond books?
A: At Goldeneye, his Jamaican home. Although now part of a luxurious holiday resort, the house was very basic in Fleming's time--so much so that his friend and neighbour Noel Coward referred to it as Goldeneye, Nose and Throat!

Q: Although Ursula Andress wears the most famous bikini in cinema history in her iconic performance in Doctor No, in Fleming's novel of the same name the character Honeychile Rider wears even less. What does she wear?
A: She is naked save for a knife-belt.

Q: The first Bond novel, Casino Royale, originally had a different title when it was published in the US. Under what title was it initially published here?
A: The initial title here was You Asked For It.

Q: What is James Bond’s favorite meal?
A: Breakfast. He has a particular penchant for scrambled eggs, and the short story 007 in New York even includes his own recipe for them.

Q: Who is Miss Moneypenny named for?
A: Miss Moneypenny was named after a character in an unpublished novel written by Ian Fleming's brother, the travel writer Peter Fleming.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:41:36 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Set in the Cold War, and follows the action of Bond across two contintents and exotic locations after he is assigned to shadow a mysterious, power-crazed pharmaceutical magnate with an interest in opiate deriviates.

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