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Thank you - I gathered it wasn't well received by the fans.
Could you provide a link to that piece? It sounds fascinating!
If you go to literary007.com it is the first article on the home page titled ‘Ian Fleming’s Literary Legacy’
Interesting that you mention house moves. One of the things that PussyNoMore discarded that he’s spent his whole life putting back together was a complete collection of Fleming/Cape first editions!
It’s fascinating that you kept Diment. There is an amazing story behind this author that PussyNoMore continues to research.
In terms of the books themselves, ‘The Dolly Dolly Spy’ was actually rather unique at the time and sold like the proverbial hot cakes. Things went quickly downhill thereafter.
Set in the Soviet Union during the early ‘60s it centres around a US double agent who, having defected some twelve years earlier, is now using his plan to publish his biography via his brother’s NYC based publishing company to set the record straight - or is he?
This is really a novel about betrayal and the corrosive effect it has on everybody touched by it.
It is deftly plotted and Karon does a brilliant job of describing life for traitors that were obliged to come in from the cold and the mistrust they provoked from all sides. He also skilfully weaves real characters into his story giving it a real smell of authenticity.
Although it is certainly not without action, it is a realistic spy story that will appeal to fans of Furst,
Kerr and Le Carre.
This is the first Kanon novel that PussyNoMore has read he is certainly up for more.
Oh nooooo. In my experience getting rid of stuff always eventually leads to regret and heartache, but there's only so much space and there's always more stuff to acquire...
I ditched all my Helen MacInnes except The Venetian Affair and now I seem to be buying them all again in exactly the same awful 70s edition. At least it keeps me donating money to various charities.
Currently playing on Radio 4 Extra, read by Tim McInnerny: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b039pfsw
Don’t be put off by the movie, which is supposed to be pretty average, the book is fabulous.
The first quarter reads like FRWL. Fabulous stuff!
It is a stand-alone novel and features a new protagonist, Kit Carridine, a spy novelist recruited by Mi6 for some daring do whilst at a book conference in Marrakesh.
Very Ambleresque in tone and his best since ‘The Trinity Six’
The Pussy gives it 4.5 out of 5.0
Well worth the wonga.
It features a hunt for a Syrian refugee who has damning evidence on ISIS.
He is being simultaneously pursued by ISIS and an Mi6 freelancer as he tries to reach Germany via the refugee trail. As you would expect, they have different plans for his future.
Extremely topical. Porter takes on some big issues. It grips like a vice and his hero, Paul Sampson, is certainly a man for our times.
The set pieces are absolutely brilliant and The Pussy thought the whole thing had shades of Forsyth’s ‘Day Of The Jackal’.
Porter is an espionage master. He doesn’t churn them out but when they come they are well worth the wonga.
Fabulous stuff and The Pussy gives it his cherished 5P rating.
Ps. For those that love spy books and movies you should check out www.spybrary.com
Finally there is a high quality site we can go to to get our fix.
The podcasts are great and episode 51 features a fabulous interview with Charles Cumming
I read the sequel to Red Sparrow, Palace of Treason, and found it to be a top notch espionage thriller, so of course I watched the Jennifer Lawrence film too, which I thought was quite good.
The movie's got a dark, but not dull tone.
It did capture the vibe found in the second book I thought. This Red Sparrow business is nasty business.
I think the movie does justice to the tone of the books
I'll be picking up the third book in the trilogy, The Kremlins Candidate, in the next week or so.
I will probably visit the original book at some point, but having seen the film, and with the original story rehashed quite a bit in book two, I do feel caught up with the origins.
==Matthews is a long-time senior CIA operative, which gives his narrative some extra heft.
He casts Putin as a character, and as the big bad of the stories.
Timmer makes a good point about the movie.
PussyNoMore was put off going to the cinema by some decidedly average U.K. reviews.
He watched it when it became available on SKY and was pleasantly pleased. Watchable but perhaps not top notch. Certainly better than the critics suggested and as Timmer said, it certainly captured the tone of the book.
The Pussy will read the sequels in due course.
Originally published in 1964, the book has just been re-released by Top Notch thrillers in the U.K. after an extensive period out of print.
James Munro was a pseudonym for James Mitchell who went on to create the ultimate ant-Bond in the downbeat spy series ‘Callan’.
Appearing just three months after the death of Ian Fleming, TMWSD introduced John Craig who was instantly tipped to be the literary character most likely to replace Bond.
Craig, a decorated war hero of the SBS and successful arms smuggler is providing weoponry across the political hot spots when he is targeted by French army officers fighting against Algerian independence. When his home and friends are attacked he decides to take the fight to the enemy with the help of the sinister Loomis of Department K, a small and highly selective unit of Mi6.
Craig was an absolutely fabulous creation and this, the first in a four book series is a true masterpiece of the genre and was the most successful launch of ‘64. A year that saw a plethora of new heroes try to grab Bond’s mantle.
It is tightly plotted and brought us a hero that was truly new, different and better, just at the time that the Bond franchise was loosing its way and we were looking for something new.
TMWSD is a real balls out thriller that will have you gripped from the get go. Craig is an entirely believable character who is as hard as nails and the book contains some phenomenal action sequences.
Although The Pussy loved Callan, in retrospect he wished that Munro/Mitchell had put more effort into the Craig sequels and had continued with him. He was truly the Bond successor that got away and was undoubtedly a great influence on Adam Hall with his great creation ‘Quiller’ and on Andrew York’s hero, the less great Jonas Wild aka ‘The Eliminator’.
That said, thanks to Top Notch we can all enjoy it today and enjoy it we must because this is absolutely mandatory reading for any self respecting Bond aficionado.
PussyNoMore gives it his cherished five pussy rating.
Congratulations @Agent_99! I've listened to a few episodes and will be sure to listen to this one too!
Me too. Your voice is lovely though. I have kind of been asked to go on that podcast some time.
Yes, it sounds like fun. The presenter Shane Whaley has asked me a few times on Facebook about being a guest on the podcast. He says they've not had an Ulsterman on it yet. Yes, it would probably be on Gardner.
Yes, that would be nice. I recall a literary Bond episode of the podcast where the continuations got a mention near the end, but I think that's been about it.
Shane did say that if anyone wanted they could do an episode on Gardner or some of the other continuation authors so we may eventually see it! Even an episode on Gardner's many non-Bond spy novels from Boysie Oakes to Herbie Kruger and beyond would be a good idea too.
PussyNoMore loves Quiller !
Conway won the 2010 IF Silver Dagger for ‘A Loyal Spy’ which was also very good.
If Fleming were with us today PussyNoMore feels this is very much the type of novel he would be writing !
Is it any good? Its a spy thriller novel from 1968.