Renowned Bondologists, Flemingistas & Other Ne'er-do-wells,
With Thursday fast approaching and with the 'Times' having published two extracts, I thought we'd get ahead of the game and start this thread now.
Interested parties can jump into the fray at will — either as they read Boyd's book or after they've finished.
From the tasters in 'The Times', I think things are looking very positive.
In Saturday's edition they gave us part of the first chapter and I have to say it starts well. He writes from Bond's perspective and he gets the voice absolutely right. I loved the way he evoked the zeitgeist of the late '60s, from one who was around and in London at the time (aged 16 in 1969 - God help me ) I would say he nails it. His description of Bond's routines — albeit it's not a normal day — are well handled. We know we are in Bond land from the get go but he doesn't make the mistake of aping Fleming. I also liked the way he mentions Bond's clothes and accessories with a deft touch. He sets the high old tone but doesn't labour it and avoids pastiche.
Today's extract is taken from location in Africa and includes a significant action scene. Again it reads exceptionally well and dispelled a small reservation I had about Boyd writing Bond. Anybody who has read any of his other excellent works will know that action writing has not been a particular feature. Here he shows that he can handle it well and it makes for exciting reading. Another key moment in this extract is his first meeting with the books villain and yes, for a first encounter, I think he gets it right — physical deformity et all — and my skin was starting to crawl.
All in all, so fare so good and I can't wait to get my hands on the real thing this Thursday when I attend the launch.