'On His Majesty's Secret Service' by Charlie Higson (2023)

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  • CharmianBondCharmianBond Pett Bottom, Kent
    Posts: 534
    mtm wrote: »
    Yes, I should have mentioned that; it wasn't really Bond. From memory Gardner still made him feel vaguely the same character- this was just quite a bland hero, really.
    I do expect Higson to nail him much better, yes. It'll be interesting to see as he's not actually written adult Bond before: was there an epilogue on the last one maybe?

    It was the ending to the third novel, Double or Die. That was set in 1945 though so Bond was technically an adult but it still wasn't in the Fleming timeline.
  • Posts: 1,001
    Signed-Template-dont-delete.png

    E8IpL96XEAYBD4q.png?mtime=1629126885
    On His Majesty's Secret Service
    https://www.goldsborobooks.com/product/on-his-majestys-secret-service
    by Charlie Higson
    Publisher Ian Fleming Publications
    • Signed & Numbered
    • Limited Edition
    • Hardcover
    • UK First Edition, First Printing
    Limited Edition Only 1000 Copies
    Released May 4, 2023
    ISBN 978-1915797070
    ONLY 1000 COPIES
    LIMITED EDITION
    £16.99


    Thankyou for posting this link. The Goldsboro books are well worth collecting.
  • MaxCasinoMaxCasino United States
    edited April 2023 Posts: 4,105
    I liked Deaver‘s update of the MI6/00 section background. I’ve written about this ad nauseam here and it’s all fictional anyway, so who cares, but MI6 is so big and it’s Head so well known that it and they are hardly the shadow warriors of Fleming‘s time. So transposing the significant characters into a smaller, clandestine organisation that kind of sits to the side of official MI6 makes a ton of sense.
    The rest of the book shows Deaver is by now too reliant on cliffhangers and twists. I’ve read many books by him and by know you just know to expect pretty much the exact opposite of what he writes until the last 20 pages and Carte Blanche is very guilty of that.
    mtm wrote: »
    Yes I agree: I reread it a few months ago and it's a bit of a mess to be honest. Like Gardner's books, it feels quite like he's making it up as he goes along and it's extremely episodic with cliffhangers all over the place (Gardner would often seem to hit a dead end and just decide to make an ally turn out to be a double agent just to keep the story going). I did quite like the early set piece of Bond being trapped in the building rigged for demolition though, and his method of escape is good.
    Also agreed about the restructuring of the Double O section, it makes sense. The idea of the head of the entire secret intelligence service personally briefing a field officer does seem a bit silly nowadays.
    Bounine wrote: »
    There were some good moments like the two that have been mentioned above but what I hated about Carte Blanche was that Deaver changed the character of James Bond into someone who was almost unrecognisable. Terrible.

    It'll be interesting to read a Bond novel set in the present day by someone who seems to have a knowledge of the character, this obviously being Charlie Higson.

    I can respect your opinions on CB. I’m biased as CB was my first time reading Bond, and Jeffery Deaver has liked my Tweets related to Bond and his personal book. At least he looks at his Bond time fondly. Or appreciates his fans. I get where people are not fond of his characteristics of Bond but that I understand. At least he also brought it into modern day. The same as above can be applied to a number of modern Bond authors. They have responded to my Tweets. Sebastian Faulks hasn’t responded to my Tweets or talked about his Bond book and that says something. Be thankful for what we got. Being a Bond author is really a thankless job. A lot of fandoms aren’t as lucky as us Bond fans.

    As for Charlie Higson, I trust him to deliver. I think we’ll hear something about him coming back for a second adult Bond novel, or another author by the end of the summer. Kim Sherwood will the official Bond spinoff author for the time being. I still would like some of the characters to get a modern day spinoff novel though.

  • edited April 2023 Posts: 2,598
    I wonder if Higson will have any characters from his Young Bond books appear in OHisMSS. Maybe not for the obvious reason: 1930's - 2023. I think Benson made a mistake referencing characters from the Fleming books. It wasn't necessary. Aside for Leiter, MP and M, did Gardner do this? I don't remember. I'm possibly contradicting myself though when I say that I'd still like M, Boothroyd and Penny to be in the contemporary books. Bond has to have his own secretary though. Moneypenny is M's secretary. Anyway, the Mi6 staff obviously weren't in the Young Bond books.

    I haven't read 'Double Or Nothing' but the reviews said that Moneypenny was head of the double O section. Don't like this.
  • MaxCasinoMaxCasino United States
    Posts: 4,105
    Bounine wrote: »
    I wonder if Higson will have any characters from his Young Bond books appear in OHisMSS. Maybe not for the obvious reason: 1930's - 2023. I think Benson made a mistake referencing characters from the Fleming books. It wasn't necessary. Aside for Leiter, MP and M, did Gardner do this? I don't remember. I'm possibly contradicting myself though when I say that I'd still like M, Boothroyd and Penny to be in the contemporary books. Bond has to have his own secretary though. Moneypenny is M's secretary. Anyway, the Mi6 staff obviously weren't in the Young Bond books.

    I haven't read 'Double Or Nothing' but the reviews said that Moneypenny was head of the double O section. Don't like this.

    Blofeld is behind it all. Probably not. I do find it odd that we never got much social media from Charlie Higson about it.Anthony Horowitz and Kim Sherwood often Tweeted their progress. Kim even highlighted her characters!

    As for bringing characters back, I think we fans are too hard on continuation authors for it. If you have great characters why waste them? Why praise Guy Hamilton and Tom Mackiewicz for thinking bringing back Sheriff JW Pepper was a good idea? Then we can spare the authors for bringing back other characters in different ways!
  • CharmianBondCharmianBond Pett Bottom, Kent
    Posts: 534
    I'm hoping the novella length will curb the fan service trap that the continuation novels fall into. Then again the Young Bond short story Higson wrote did feature a young Mathis meeting James so who knows. But on the whole one of the reasons I prefer Young Bond to the continuations is that the references were quite subtle.
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited April 2023 Posts: 13,002
    Waterstone's shipped a copy today 26 April to my US location.

    Goldsboro status is currently out of stock. Orders will ship after the 4 May publication date.

    Still not represented on Amazon for the US.

  • timdalton007timdalton007 North Alabama
    Posts: 154
    Still not represented on Amazon for the US.

    Which seems surprising, given how close we are to publication day and that there's supposed to be an eBook and audiobook release coming in the short term. They're leaving it close to time, to say the least. To the point I wouldn't be surprised if both became available on the day!
  • ImpertinentGoonImpertinentGoon Everybody needs a hobby.
    Posts: 1,351
    It's also listed as unavailable on Amazon Germany and a few independent booksellers I checked. I missed the last-order deadline before the shuttering of the Book Depository so now put in a Hail Mary order to Amazon UK (Waterstones had delivery fees higher than the price of the book). We'll see when it arrives...
  • Red_SnowRed_Snow Australia
    Posts: 2,495
    Given the ultra tight time frame, I wonder if we will get an reviews ahead of the books release.
  • mtmmtm United Kingdom
    Posts: 14,936
    If copies are being sent out now, plus as it's such a short book that I imagine it can be read in a morning, I expect that papers and websites should be able to get little reviews out.
  • edited April 2023 Posts: 2,598
    mtm wrote: »
    Yes, I should have mentioned that; it wasn't really Bond. From memory Gardner still made him feel vaguely the same character- this was just quite a bland hero, really.
    I do expect Higson to nail him much better, yes. It'll be interesting to see as he's not actually written adult Bond before: was there an epilogue on the last one maybe?

    It was the ending to the third novel, Double or Die. That was set in 1945 though so Bond was technically an adult but it still wasn't in the Fleming timeline.

    If we go by Fleming's timeline, Bond would have been 20 or 21, then. In terms of Pearson's, he would have been 24 or 25.
  • CharmianBondCharmianBond Pett Bottom, Kent
    Posts: 534
    Bounine wrote: »
    mtm wrote: »
    Yes, I should have mentioned that; it wasn't really Bond. From memory Gardner still made him feel vaguely the same character- this was just quite a bland hero, really.
    I do expect Higson to nail him much better, yes. It'll be interesting to see as he's not actually written adult Bond before: was there an epilogue on the last one maybe?

    It was the ending to the third novel, Double or Die. That was set in 1945 though so Bond was technically an adult but it still wasn't in the Fleming timeline.

    If we go by Fleming's timeline, Bond would have been 20 or 21, then. In terms of Pearson's, he would have been 24 or 25.

    In the Young Bond continuity Bond's birth year is set at 1920 so he'd be 24/25 in that flashforward. Point is Higson hasn't written for 007 until now which is exciting.

    Less than a week to go now. I'm getting hyped but also trying to temper my expectations.
  • Posts: 2,598
    Bounine wrote: »
    mtm wrote: »
    Yes, I should have mentioned that; it wasn't really Bond. From memory Gardner still made him feel vaguely the same character- this was just quite a bland hero, really.
    I do expect Higson to nail him much better, yes. It'll be interesting to see as he's not actually written adult Bond before: was there an epilogue on the last one maybe?

    It was the ending to the third novel, Double or Die. That was set in 1945 though so Bond was technically an adult but it still wasn't in the Fleming timeline.

    If we go by Fleming's timeline, Bond would have been 20 or 21, then. In terms of Pearson's, he would have been 24 or 25.

    In the Young Bond continuity Bond's birth year is set at 1920 so he'd be 24/25 in that flashforward. Point is Higson hasn't written for 007 until now which is exciting.

    Less than a week to go now. I'm getting hyped but also trying to temper my expectations.


    Yeah, same.

    It's interesting that Higson used the same birth date that Pearson did in his Bond biography. This is better than 1924. It would make Bond around the age of 32 in Casino Royale instead of 28 which I find to be a bit on the young side.

  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,795
    Interesting that the book doesn't seem to have a dust jacket. And it's also proof that advance review copies have been sent out. Sadly I didn't get one.
  • mtmmtm United Kingdom
    Posts: 14,936
    It’s only a slim thing, probably didn’t need a dust jacket.
  • CharmianBondCharmianBond Pett Bottom, Kent
    Posts: 534
    mtm wrote: »
    It’s only a slim thing, probably didn’t need a dust jacket.

    I've got a 100-page novella which has got a nice dust jacket. I guess it's just a factor of time and cost but that's still not gonna stop me from complaining that the cover is very uninspiring.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,795
    mtm wrote: »
    It’s only a slim thing, probably didn’t need a dust jacket.

    Yes, that's it. I know a lot of people don't like dust jackets as they slip around when you're reading the book. I like them on older books though as the cover art is often beautiful. Today dust jacket covers are often much more generic so they're not so essential any more.
  • mtmmtm United Kingdom
    edited April 2023 Posts: 14,936
    mtm wrote: »
    It’s only a slim thing, probably didn’t need a dust jacket.

    I've got a 100-page novella which has got a nice dust jacket. I guess it's just a factor of time and cost but that's still not gonna stop me from complaining that the cover is very uninspiring.

    Fair enough, could have had one I guess. The gloss finish on the blue maybe looks a little cheap, but never mind.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    edited April 2023 Posts: 17,795
    Perhaps they didn't want to make the cover too garish given it features the real world King and his Coronation. Royal blue and a golden crown looks neat, classy and understated without over doing things. Just a thought.
  • CharmianBondCharmianBond Pett Bottom, Kent
    Posts: 534
    Yeah I get why they went understated, but I just don't like glossy covers on any book, especially fiction. Makes it look like a book my nan would own. Anyway it's a minor quibble, and it's what's on the inside that counts.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,795
    The old saying "Never judge a book by its cover" comes to mind. :)
  • brinkeguthriebrinkeguthrie Piz Gloria
    Posts: 1,400
    how many pages we talking' here?
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited April 2023 Posts: 13,002
    176. Looks to be a significant volume on the shelf. Or at least compare to Octopussy and the Living Daylights at 94 pages.

    With no Amazon US presence I'm thinking it may be a limited printing and release. Or else delayed months for the US as with the Sherwood book.

    Still my "early release" shipped the 26th will surely arrive after 2nd and even 4th May. I'll be out of town until the 10th so won't be receiving it before then likely.


    https://twitter.com/monstroso
    FuywaeBX0AE8RUk?format=jpg&name=small
    FuywaeAXsAEdKni?format=jpg&name=small



    Correction or at least addition:

    Amazon UK ships to the US.


    mainlogo_uk_amazonsmile.png?w=640
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Majestys-Secret-Service-James-Bond/dp/1915797071
    We ship internationally
    We're showing you items that ship to United States. To see items that are shipped to a different country, change your delivery address.





  • brinkeguthriebrinkeguthrie Piz Gloria
    Posts: 1,400
    I just want it on Kindle!
  • Posts: 2,598
    I just want it on Kindle!

    Me too. I never buy Bond books now unless they have good covers. I can’t remember when the last good cover was. Amazon.uk never has kindle Bond for whatever reason…well, at least the new ones.

    If Amazon.com don’t get the book for a few months I won’t be reading it for a good while. Disappointing. Hmmm, actually, I’ll buy it in the book store in my home country when I go back in June if it’s still not available on Kindle at this time.

  • Posts: 9,767
    176. Looks to be a significant volume on the shelf. Or at least compare to Octopussy and the Living Daylights at 94 pages.

    With no Amazon US presence I'm thinking it may be a limited printing and release. Or else delayed months for the US as with the Sherwood book.

    Still my "early release" shipped the 26th will surely arrive after 2nd and even 4th May. I'll be out of town until the 10th so won't be receiving it before then likely.


    https://twitter.com/monstroso
    FuywaeBX0AE8RUk?format=jpg&name=small
    FuywaeAXsAEdKni?format=jpg&name=small



    Correction or at least addition:

    Amazon UK ships to the US.


    mainlogo_uk_amazonsmile.png?w=640
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Majestys-Secret-Service-James-Bond/dp/1915797071
    We ship internationally
    We're showing you items that ship to United States. To see items that are shipped to a different country, change your delivery address.





    Thanks for the Amazon link i preordered it and cant wait i will be very happy with owning it now to finish Win Lose Or Die before i start this book

    This should light the fire under me to get it done
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    edited April 2023 Posts: 17,795
    Risico007 wrote: »
    176. Looks to be a significant volume on the shelf. Or at least compare to Octopussy and the Living Daylights at 94 pages.

    With no Amazon US presence I'm thinking it may be a limited printing and release. Or else delayed months for the US as with the Sherwood book.

    Still my "early release" shipped the 26th will surely arrive after 2nd and even 4th May. I'll be out of town until the 10th so won't be receiving it before then likely.


    https://twitter.com/monstroso
    FuywaeBX0AE8RUk?format=jpg&name=small
    FuywaeAXsAEdKni?format=jpg&name=small



    Correction or at least addition:

    Amazon UK ships to the US.


    mainlogo_uk_amazonsmile.png?w=640
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Majestys-Secret-Service-James-Bond/dp/1915797071
    We ship internationally
    We're showing you items that ship to United States. To see items that are shipped to a different country, change your delivery address.





    Thanks for the Amazon link i preordered it and cant wait i will be very happy with owning it now to finish Win Lose Or Die before i start this book

    This should light the fire under me to get it done

    Win, Lose or Die is a good Gardner novel. I was flicking through it again a while ago and the quality of the writing really stood out. It kind of predicted the Islamic terrorism we've seen in the West over the last 25 years or so, albeit the villain's motives were cynically financial rather than ideological.
  • Posts: 9,767
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    Risico007 wrote: »
    176. Looks to be a significant volume on the shelf. Or at least compare to Octopussy and the Living Daylights at 94 pages.

    With no Amazon US presence I'm thinking it may be a limited printing and release. Or else delayed months for the US as with the Sherwood book.

    Still my "early release" shipped the 26th will surely arrive after 2nd and even 4th May. I'll be out of town until the 10th so won't be receiving it before then likely.


    https://twitter.com/monstroso
    FuywaeBX0AE8RUk?format=jpg&name=small
    FuywaeAXsAEdKni?format=jpg&name=small



    Correction or at least addition:

    Amazon UK ships to the US.


    mainlogo_uk_amazonsmile.png?w=640
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Majestys-Secret-Service-James-Bond/dp/1915797071
    We ship internationally
    We're showing you items that ship to United States. To see items that are shipped to a different country, change your delivery address.





    Thanks for the Amazon link i preordered it and cant wait i will be very happy with owning it now to finish Win Lose Or Die before i start this book

    This should light the fire under me to get it done

    Win, Lose or Die is a good Gardner novel. I was flicking through it again a while ago and the quality of the writing really stood out. It kind of predicted the kind of Islamic terrorism we've seen in the West over the last 25 years or so, albeit the villains motives were cynically financial rather ideological.

    I know i picked it on your recommendation i have been going through Gardner rather haphazardly again if i had to pick my favorite author it would be Benson (dont shoot me fleming purists I realize he is more important but Benson grabs me faster)

    But Gardner sometimes i love him (death is forever and Seafire) and other times well (licence renewed and Icebreaker both were just ok for me)


    I will say even Gardner i am not a huge fan i prefer to the slew of authors we got since 2008 with the exception of Deaver


    For me ranking the authors currently

    Benson
    Fleming
    Gardner
    Deaver
    Horowitz
    Faulks
    Boyd (i couldnt stand solo)

    Over all i am hoping the hype is real and Higson’s modern bond thriller sits between benson and fleming ( but who knows maybe Higson will be my favorite)
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