SOLO by William Boyd - Reviews & Feedback

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  • It is probably too dramatic to say that SOLO has done for literary Bond but I do think that the celebrity trilogy has seen off any chance of a quality literary return.
    Many, myself included, have drawn endless comparisons between these lack lustre efforts and Anthony Horowitz's great Homes novel, 'The House Of Silk' and PD James' tremendous Jane Austin continuation novel, 'Death Comes To Pemberley'.
    The reason being that both of the aforementioned prove that it is entirely possible to make a quality contribution to an iconic set of characters and to please fans old and new.
    Indeed Sophie Hannah is hard at work on a new Hurcule Poirot novel and I'm quite sure that together with Agatha Christies' grandson, Mathew Prichard, she will make sure it's a worthy entry.
    The fact is, it is not impossible to satisfy Bond fans - it's just difficult.
    For the most part, Amis, Gardner (certainly with 'Licence Renewed'), Higson and Westbrook all succeeded to a greater or lesser extent. But it requires talented authors that are rigorously challenged by the copyright holders and this is where IFP have fallen down in their duty of care.
    When @Bounine says; "It's a pity that SOLO" lacked plot", he says it all! Surely to God - no plot means no book - and if that wasn't IFP's job, what was?
    Of course, no book would have delayed the filling of coffers and doubtless that was more the point.
  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    edited December 2013 Posts: 9,117
    Revelator wrote:

    As Bond leafed through the new volume of his adventures he realised that it was all over. He was stuck in prose that creaked with the weary energy of pastiche. The girls had to have surprising inner resources as well as great tits. These days he had to suffer not just from the regrets of a trained killer but from post-traumatic stress. He had to spend weeks stranded in an Africa that was a standard issue decaying postcolonial playground for mercenaries, with the odd pathos-filled episode in which children starve slotted in to show that this was a thriller with a conscience. He was relieved to see that he was still allowed baddies who were physically deformed, but he was nauseated by the amount he was forced to eat. Meal after meal, most of it with a tasteless dash of local colour, or ‘surprisingly tasty, peppery fish stew with dago-dago dumplings’. It was a relief when he was reduced to eating pawpaw in the jungle. There seemed to be some funny stuff going on in the old tummy too: ‘He felt a little, animalistic quiver of desire low in his gut and his loins.’ Must be all that steak and scrambled eggs. It was true that there was a recipe for Scrambled Eggs James Bond in the rather weary short story ‘007 in New York’. But a footnote in Solo explaining how to prepare the James Bond salad dressing? Bond could see that this might be good for market-share, but otherwise remained unconvinced.

    As he read on he had to accept that even his food scenes had gone limp. He flicked forward to the moment when he finally got it together with the ripe-bodied starlet Bryce Fitzjohn – though surely that should be Fitzjames, he thought with a grin. Maybe there was, as this Boyd person claimed – he just couldn’t stop those clichés rolling – ‘life in the old dog yet’. Or maybe there wasn’t:

    They both knew exactly what was going to happen later and that knowledge provided a satisfying sensual undercurrent to their conversation as they ate the meal she cooked for him – a rare sirloin steak with a tomato and shallot salad, the wine a light and fruity Chianti, with a thin slice of lemony torta della nonna to follow.

    Bond confessed to himself that he had in the dark days of the 1960s succumbed to a glass or two of Chianti. But ‘light and fruity’? He gritted his gums. He accelerated on to the sex scene: ‘They made careful love in her wide bed, Bond relishing the smooth ripeness of her body. Afterwards, she sent him down to the kitchen for another bottle of champagne and they lay in bed drinking and talking.’ ‘They made careful love’? What the hell did that mean? Protected sex? Tender sex? Both? Bond snorted. And the mere idea that he of all people would go to the kitchen like a scullery-maid to get more champagne. At least it was Taittinger and not Tesco’s bloody Finest. He coughed out a bitter laugh. He was full of hatred for the modern world. Its caringness. Its warm unspecificity. That stuff would get you killed.

    It was then he felt the kick in his chest. It was as though a donkey had coiled up its back legs and whammed him. He felt for a moment fully alive. Energy flooded into him. He sat up. Then his eyes filmed over. He fell back. The nurse came back into the room. A weak smile spread across his face.

    Very entertaining review and this whole section sums up what is wrong with this modern approach. What we want from a Bond novel is unashamed sex, snobbery and sadism but IFP are too scared to give us that and deliver instead modern day PC neutered rubbish. Just because GQ and Esquire name Daniel Craig as man of the year all the time does not mean the literary Bond is suddenly the poster boy for the metrosexual culture of wearing moisturiser, not smoking and being interested in what the woman has to say.

    Oh and in the interests of fairness Tesco currently have Taittinger Brut reduced to £25. Picked up a cheeky brace for xmas - at that price its rude not to. Cashback!
  • Posts: 267
    Villiers53 wrote:
    It is probably too dramatic to say that SOLO has done for literary Bond but I do think that the celebrity trilogy has seen off any chance of a quality literary return.
    Many, myself included, have drawn endless comparisons between these lack lustre efforts and Anthony Horowitz's great Homes novel, 'The House Of Silk' and PD James' tremendous Jane Austin continuation novel, 'Death Comes To Pemberley'.
    The reason being that both of the aforementioned prove that it is entirely possible to make a quality contribution to an iconic set of characters and to please fans old and new.
    Indeed Sophie Hannah is hard at work on a new Hurcule Poirot novel and I'm quite sure that together with Agatha Christies' grandson, Mathew Prichard, she will make sure it's a worthy entry.
    The fact is, it is not impossible to satisfy Bond fans - it's just difficult.
    For the most part, Amis, Gardner (certainly with 'Licence Renewed'), Higson and Westbrook all succeeded to a greater or lesser extent. But it requires talented authors that are rigorously challenged by the copyright holders and this is where IFP have fallen down in their duty of care.
    When @Bounine says; "It's a pity that SOLO" lacked plot", he says it all! Surely to God - no plot means no book - and if that wasn't IFP's job, what was?
    Of course, no book would have delayed the filling of coffers and doubtless that was more the point.

    Couldn't agree more old chap - it is all a bit of a shame particularly given the tremendous anticipation. There is a lot of good stuff around these days and I can't help but think that author selection remains key. If Higson won't do it - reluctant as I am to recommend an American - what about Daniel Silva or Barry Eisler?
  • edited December 2013 Posts: 4,622
    Very entertaining review and this whole section sums up what is wrong with this modern approach. What we want from a Bond novel is unashamed sex, snobbery and sadism but IFP are too scared to give us that and deliver instead modern day PC neutered rubbish. Just because GQ and Esquire name Daniel Craig as man of the year all the time does not mean the literary Bond is suddenly the poster boy for the metrosexual culture of wearing moisturiser, not smoking and being interested in what the woman has to say.
    Yes, write a Bond book with balls. Bond is decidedly not pc. He smokes, drinks and brazenly womanizes. In fact he not only drinks, he drinks heavily. Boyd got that part down. Bond indulges his induglences. He lives large. He does all this whilst being an agreeable sort, fighting on the side of the angels, or at least fighting the demons.
    I also like Bond written as very lethal. I don't mind some introspection, a little reflection, but when its time to act, Bond moves both ruthlessly and decisively.
    The Bond character is not that hard to suss out. But one has to be committed and not tempted by inclinations to "modernize" the character.
    Beyond Bond himself, we need characters like Dikko and Darko. Outlandish provocative sorts. Outlandish plots help too. Not every book mind you, but Fleming's Bond did dwell in a world of supervillains threatening much destruction and calamity.
    Fleming's Bond didn't really side one way or the other with the utterances and attitudes of eccentric characters such as Dikko and Darko, rather Bond worked with them towards achieving mission. He enjoyed their company as fellow alpha males.
    The new Bond with Balls series of books will try to channel the spirit of Fleming.
    It can be done.

  • edited December 2013 Posts: 2,598
    timmer wrote:
    Very entertaining review and this whole section sums up what is wrong with this modern approach. What we want from a Bond novel is unashamed sex, snobbery and sadism but IFP are too scared to give us that and deliver instead modern day PC neutered rubbish. Just because GQ and Esquire name Daniel Craig as man of the year all the time does not mean the literary Bond is suddenly the poster boy for the metrosexual culture of wearing moisturiser, not smoking and being interested in what the woman has to say.
    Yes, write a Bond book with balls. Bond is decidedly not pc. He smokes, drinks and brazenly womanizes. In fact he not only drinks, he drinks heavily. Boyd got that part down. Bond indulges his induglences. He lives large. He does all this whilst being an agreeable sort, fighting on the side of the angels, or at least fighting the demons.
    I also like Bond written as very lethal. I don't mind some introspection, a little reflection, but when its time to act, Bond moves both ruthlessly and decisively.
    The Bond character is not that hard to suss out. But one has to be committed and not tempted by inclinations to "modernize" the character.
    Beyond Bond himself, we need characters like Dikko and Darko. Outlandish provocative sorts. Outlandish plots help too. Not every book mind you, but Fleming's Bond did dwell in a world of supervillains threatening much destruction and calamity.
    Fleming's Bond didn't really side one way or the other with the utterances and attitudes of eccentric characters such as Dikko and Darko, rather Bond worked with them towards achieving mission. He enjoyed their company as fellow alpha males.
    The new Bond with Balls series of books will try to channel the spirit of Fleming.
    It can be done.

    Good points all round. It certainly can be done but will the author be accused of pastiche just because he has Bond eat and drink as Fleming had him do? This is the impression I get from some of these reviews. Moral of the story though, ignore certain reviewers. If I was a famous author who had been asked to write Bond novels but IFP were not going to grant me complete freedom and let me write about Fleming's Bond without all the PC garbage, then I might very well turn down the offer as I wouldn't want bad reactions.

    As much as I enjoy Gardner's Bond books, or at least the first half of them, I don't think of most of them so much as Bond novels but merely good spy thrillers with a splattering of that Bond influence.

    The literary Bond is not a character to be thought of as an angel which is what IFP or at least the authors, who have written about him, especially Deaver, seem to believe to a decent extent. I'm not sure how IFP would react if Bond was brought back to his original self in a 60's setting complete with the chauvinism. Would they intervene and have the author do re-writes or would they give him complete freedom? It would be nice to think that it would be the latter. If not, then frankly, someone else should be in charge. Bring back the original Bond, the non PC Bond, the real Bond, Fleming's Bond! Will it ever happen again or has the literary Bond, the best Bond of them all, been permanently laid to rest?
  • Bounine wrote:
    timmer wrote:
    Very entertaining review and this whole section sums up what is wrong with this modern approach. What we want from a Bond novel is unashamed sex, snobbery and sadism but IFP are too scared to give us that and deliver instead modern day PC neutered rubbish. Just because GQ and Esquire name Daniel Craig as man of the year all the time does not mean the literary Bond is suddenly the poster boy for the metrosexual culture of wearing moisturiser, not smoking and being interested in what the woman has to say.
    If I was a famous author who had been asked to write Bond novels but IFP were not going to grant me complete freedom and let me write about Fleming's Bond without all the PC garbage, then I might very well turn down the offer as I wouldn't want bad reactions.

    As much as I enjoy Gardner's Bond books, or at least the first half of them, I don't think of most of them so much as Bond novels but merely good spy thrillers with a splattering of that Bond influence.

    Surely the start point is the recruitment of the author most likely to succeed. For different reasons, Faulks, Deaver and Boyd were all long shots. Conversely Higson, Cumming, Silva or Eisler would all be very much in the zone - either a successful experience with the character ( Higson) or blooded spy thriller writers (Cumming, Siilva or Eisler).
    Secondly, if IFP enter into a commission without signing off on a plot outline they deserve what they get. Gardner spoke freely about Gildrose's involvement in his early Bond output. He didn't always like it but his first five were widely praised by old fans and recruited many new - they sold well! I am quite sure that IFP's strategical guidance toward the celebrity trilogy was close to zero.
    Thirdly, of course Bond books have to show some level of empathy with modern sensibilities but if written as historical pieces these adjustments pertain more to writing style than to any dilution in thrills - we have to face it, if you read the modern masters, good as Fleming was in his day, the art has progressed and some of today's contenders are seriously good scribes - any genre!
    I don't think any of the above constitute rocket science and when @Bounine says Gardner's first five "merely good spy thrillers with a splattering of that Bond influence", surely that's what we want? At the end of the day, that's what Amis did with Colonel Sun.
  • Posts: 267
    Villiers53 wrote:
    Surely the start point is the recruitment of the author most likely to succeed. For different reasons, Faulks, Deaver and Boyd were all long shots. Conversely Higson, Cumming, Silva or Eisler would all be very much in the zone — either a successful experience with the character ( Higson) or blooded spy thriller writers (Cumming, Siilva or Eisler).
    Secondly, if IFP enter into a commission without signing off on a plot outline they deserve what they get. Gardner spoke freely about Gildrose's involvement in his early Bond output. He didn't always like it but his first five were widely praised by old fans and recruited many new — they sold well! I am quite sure that IFP's strategical guidance toward the celebrity trilogy was close to zero.
    Thirdly, of course Bond books have to show some level of empathy with modern sensibilities but if written as historical pieces these adjustments pertain more to writing style than to any dilution in thrills - we have to face it, if you read the modern masters, good as Fleming was in his day, the art has progressed and some of today's contenders are seriously good scribes — any genre!
    I don't think any of the above constitute rocket science and when @Bounine says Gardner's first five "merely good spy thrillers with a splattering of that Bond influence", surely that's what we want? At the end of the day, that's what Amis did with Colonel Sun.

    It makes my blood boil - I am sure the pay day for the celebrity saboteurs was huge and doubtless they laughed all the way to the bank!
    Looking to the future, if there is one, the point you make about the art having progressed is very true. Some of the old masters stand up but they tend to be the classicists and much as I love Fleming and rate him very highly as a storyteller, I wouldn't put him in the same league as Greene or Ambler as a writer.
    When you think about the likes of Le Carre, Cumming, Harris and Alan Furst they are in that club and are testimony to the bar being high and the game having moved on. Perhaps that's a bigger problem than we think when we reconsider the re-imagining of Bond?

  • edited December 2013 Posts: 2,598
    Villiers53 wrote:
    Bounine wrote:
    timmer wrote:
    Very entertaining review and this whole section sums up what is wrong with this modern approach. What we want from a Bond novel is unashamed sex, snobbery and sadism but IFP are too scared to give us that and deliver instead modern day PC neutered rubbish. Just because GQ and Esquire name Daniel Craig as man of the year all the time does not mean the literary Bond is suddenly the poster boy for the metrosexual culture of wearing moisturiser, not smoking and being interested in what the woman has to say.
    If I was a famous author who had been asked to write Bond novels but IFP were not going to grant me complete freedom and let me write about Fleming's Bond without all the PC garbage, then I might very well turn down the offer as I wouldn't want bad reactions.

    As much as I enjoy Gardner's Bond books, or at least the first half of them, I don't think of most of them so much as Bond novels but merely good spy thrillers with a splattering of that Bond influence.

    Surely the start point is the recruitment of the author most likely to succeed. For different reasons, Faulks, Deaver and Boyd were all long shots. Conversely Higson, Cumming, Silva or Eisler would all be very much in the zone - either a successful experience with the character ( Higson) or blooded spy thriller writers (Cumming, Siilva or Eisler).
    Secondly, if IFP enter into a commission without signing off on a plot outline they deserve what they get. Gardner spoke freely about Gildrose's involvement in his early Bond output. He didn't always like it but his first five were widely praised by old fans and recruited many new - they sold well! I am quite sure that IFP's strategical guidance toward the celebrity trilogy was close to zero.
    Thirdly, of course Bond books have to show some level of empathy with modern sensibilities but if written as historical pieces these adjustments pertain more to writing style than to any dilution in thrills - we have to face it, if you read the modern masters, good as Fleming was in his day, the art has progressed and some of today's contenders are seriously good scribes - any genre!
    I don't think any of the above constitute rocket science and when @Bounine says Gardner's first five "merely good spy thrillers with a splattering of that Bond influence", surely that's what we want? At the end of the day, that's what Amis did with Colonel Sun.

    Originally, I didn't think that the three trilogy writers were long shots. I have read a number of Faulks's books and think they're very good and was confident that he'd do a good job. Maybe this was stupid of me at the time as he had only really scribed dramas. Some here thought Boyd was up to the challenge before they read Solo, and evidently so did IFP. Still, these two are not thriller writers so I suppose IFP need to recruit someone who's had a lot of experience in the genre. Deaver, who is an actual thriller writer, I thought was the right way to go when he was first announced as the new author. I wonder if he told IFP his plans for the character. He transformed Bond into someone who is barely recognisable. The CB story itself isn't too bad though.

    I've never really thought of the Fleming Bond books as spy thrillers in the traditional sense. I would say they're more like adventure/thrillers. I wonder if IFP have actually asked experienced spy thriller writers, and they've turned the offer down. We know they've approached Forsythe and Child. I would say Child's Reacher books are more like detective/thrillers though.

    It would be wise for IFP to give their approval only once they're happy with the plot. I know this happened with Steve Cole as he mentioned this, so it'll be interesting to see how his Young Bond books measure up.

    Why is my text appearing in the blue box when there are no quotes around it?
  • edited December 2013 Posts: 7,653
    @Bounine said:
    Why is my text appearing in the blue box when there are no quotes around it?


    Depends if the blue box is larger on the inside than the outside?
  • DB5DB5
    Posts: 408
    Okay I jsut finsihed "Solo." It was okay, but not in the same league as Amis' "Colonel Sun." There must be authors out there capable of writing a good Bond story, set in the late 60's/early 70's. I agree with those who suggest Higson, I think he understands rge chaeacter and would be willing to write several novels if the gig was offered to him.
  • Posts: 38
    I just finished "Solo" and I did not read any reviews until now. I agree it is hard to satisfy Bond fans. First thought, the ending is the issue. A drug ring and oil. I was waiting for SMERSH, , a ICBM secret base. Second, Not enough "Q" branch...attaché case, Walther PPK, silencer...I like the line about guns in America, but he should be able to purchase a PPK, breaking into a hotel room with a shoe heel, not Bond. Up until the last few chapters, I really did like the way it was written. Simply we need more of a Connery Bond and plot.
  • SHF1 wrote:
    I just finished "Solo" and I did not read any reviews until now. I agree it is hard to satisfy Bond fans. First thought, the ending is the issue. A drug ring and oil. I was waiting for SMERSH, , a ICBM secret base. Second, Not enough "Q" branch...attaché case, Walther PPK, silencer...I like the line about guns in America, but he should be able to purchase a PPK, breaking into a hotel room with a shoe heel, not Bond. Up until the last few chapters, I really did like the way it was written. Simply we need more of a Connery Bond and plot.

    Yes - "No Plot No Book" would be a simple mantra for IFP to adopt. It might save the fans further embarrassment.

  • Posts: 4,622
    SHF1 wrote:
    I just finished "Solo" and I did not read any reviews until now. I agree it is hard to satisfy Bond fans. First thought, the ending is the issue. A drug ring and oil. I was waiting for SMERSH, , a ICBM secret base. Second, Not enough "Q" branch...attaché case, Walther PPK, silencer...I like the line about guns in America, but he should be able to purchase a PPK, breaking into a hotel room with a shoe heel, not Bond. Up until the last few chapters, I really did like the way it was written. Simply we need more of a Connery Bond and plot.

    Yes the book was very pedestrian by Bond standards. More of an interlude adventure.
    Yes maybe IFP does need to get itself involved in approval of the initial story outlines, as someone described their approach with Gardner to be.
    The Gardner books worked out quite fine IMO.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 18,006
    chrisisall wrote:
    Was Gardner a great writer? Probably not. Will he be remembered long after Sebastian Faulkes and William Boyd (who we keep being told are great writers) are forgotten? Indubitably.
    If he will be remembered, then is he not at least a little great? :-?

    Well I'd say John Gardner was a lot more than a little great, but you know where I stand on this issue!
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 18,006
    Birdleson wrote:
    SOLO is definitely my favorite Bond book since COLONEL SUN (in fact those are the only post-Fleming books that I feel comfortable recommending). Funny thing is, along with DEVIL MAY CARE, they form multiple choice continuations from THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN.

    Though not quite on spot, I enjoyed Boyd's interpretation of the character.

    What of John Gardner, @Birdleson?
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 18,006
    Birdleson wrote:
    I read the first four Gardner novels when they cam tout. I remember thinking that they were okay, but nothing memorable. Definitely lacked any of Fleming's panache and ability to produce suspense. I just didn't feel like going forward. I had, and still have, no interest in reading the ones where Bond is updated and transplanted in time. I didn't read any more until DEVIL MAY CARE, and then SOLO.
    I did like the Wood books, but I was in high school back then. Who knows how discriminating I actually was.

    Thank you for your thoughts on John Gardner, @Birdleson. I'd of course encourage you to read on further into his work as he did write some very interesting situations for Bond to find himself in. Like Fleming did near the end of his run as Bond author, Gardner started to experiment once he went into the 1990s, with pleasing results. Highly recommended!
  • The French version to be released made the cover of one of our news magazine, I didn't expect that.

    7006877.jpg
  • edited March 2014 Posts: 2,015
    #41 in the book weekly chart, but Boyd's book had only 4 days in it including a Sunday.
  • edited March 2014 Posts: 19
    I liked SOLO as a book, just not as a James Bond book.

    If that makes any sense.

    FlemingsBond.com
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 40,682
    I just stopped by a Books-A-Million and saw it in stock for $20, but I'll wait until it's less than $10 and in paperback format, especially after most of the reviews I've read.
  • Hi all, I'm new to the M16 Community. Reading the comments on SOLO, I'm in the minority as I genuinely enjoyed Boyd's effort. I liked his Bond. Yes he is far removed from Fleming's Bond, but so was Gardner's hero and Benson's and for that matter was Deaver's. SOLO is a tad tame in places but I enjoyed it all the same.
  • edited March 2014 Posts: 2,598
    Hi all, I'm new to the M16 Community. Reading the comments on SOLO, I'm in the minority as I genuinely enjoyed Boyd's effort. I liked his Bond. Yes he is far removed from Fleming's Bond, but so was Gardner's hero and Benson's and for that matter was Deaver's. SOLO is a tad tame in places but I enjoyed it all the same.

    No, not the minority. There are are a good number of positive reviews out there. I wouldn't say that Bond was far removed from Fleming's Bond in SOLO either. Removed somewhat but I wouldn't say "far". He was more like Bond than he was in the other continuation novels with the exception of the Wood books, Pearson's excellent biography and Colonel Sun which I find a tad overrated in the Bond community.

    I have confidence in Cole regarding the new Young Bond book but I feel a little disappointed hearing that the new Young Bond book will be set in Hollywood. Atleast it'll be 1930's Hollywood. I don't think Bond should mix with celebrities though.

  • Posts: 38
    I am more in line with Timmers comments. I believe he is spot on. One problem is that SOLO followed Carte Blanche which was outstanding and I expected the same level and was disappointed. I would really like to see another period piece. The Cold War and the Iron curtain has so many possibilities.
  • edited May 2014 Posts: 654
    I´m waiting for a signed copy of SOLO for the moment. I was really exited until I heard what you guy´s thought of it... :|
  • Posts: 9,821
    in spite of the comments I have begun reading solo and man is it bloody aweful sigh I am hoping the next one has a bit of action and is set in modern times Fleming's bond was never a period piece don't start making him one now...
  • edited May 2014 Posts: 2,598
    @Risico007 Why don't you like Bond period pieces?

    @SHF1 Not that SOLO is anything to write home about but personally I think it definitely outranks Carte Blanche which is about a protagonist who only shares one thing in common with the real James Bond and that's the name. In CB's defence however, the story was alright but was ruined by these nauseating short lived twists which weren't exciting or suspenseful anyway.
  • Posts: 368
    I really liked the novel. It was thrilling, full of twists and also very realistic. Great book!
  • edited May 2014 Posts: 802
    It is too dramatic to say that SOLO has killed off literary Bond but I do think that the celebrity trilogy has seen off any chance of a quality literary return.
    Many, myself included, have drawn endless comparisons between the lack lustre celebrity trilogy efforts and Anthony Horowitz's great Homes novel, 'The House Of Silk' and PD James' tremendous Jane Austin continuation novel, 'Death Comes To Pemberley'.
    The reason being that both of the aforementioned prove that it is entirely possible to make a quality contribution to an iconic set of characters and to please fans old and new.
    Indeed, Sophie Hannah is hard at work on a new Hurcule Poirot novel and I'm quite sure that together with Agatha Christies' grandson, Mathew Prichard, she will make sure it's a worthy entry.
    The fact is, it is not impossible to satisfy Bond fans - it's just difficult.
    Amis, Gardner (certainly with 'Licence Renewed'), Higson and Westbrook all did but, it requires talented authors that are rigorously challenged by the copyright holders and this is where IFP have fallen down in their duty of care.
    When @Bounine says; "It's a pity that SOLO" lacked plot", he says it all! Surely to God - no plot means no book - and if that wasn't IFP's job to make sure it had one then whose was it?
    Of course,rejecting Solo would have delayed filling the coffers and doubtless that was more the point!


  • 4EverBonded4EverBonded the Ballrooms of Mars
    Posts: 12,459
    Well now it is out in paperback and I will get it. Not expecting much due to so many negative reviews. But I will read it this summer.
  • I just got my signed copy of the book and I think it look´s really good! I won´t read it yet, ´cause I´m reading them all in the right order!
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