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The best of Raymond Benson


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Poll: The Bensons

Your favourite...?

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Your least favourite...?

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Your favourite short story?

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#1 Double-Oh Agent

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Posted 01 May 2006 - 10:11 PM

Dinovelvet's discussion of the Raymond Benson novels and subsequent rankings in the Never Dream Of Dying thread has inspired me to try to start a poll asking people what their favorite Benson novel was.

So which one is yours?

My favorite Benson novel is High Time To Kill. It's different and is set in a unique location with a race against time. It also sets up the Union trilogy well and is exciting throughout. To me, it's Benson at his best.

#2 zencat

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Posted 01 May 2006 - 10:14 PM

It's always been a very close call between Never Dream of Dying and High Time To Kill for me.

#3 Loomis

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Posted 01 May 2006 - 10:15 PM

"Zero Minus Ten". Exotic and atmospheric locations, brought to life very well, some low-key humour that actually works, and more than a glimmer of Flemmmming's Bond.... all of it set around one of the great events of recent years. The book has flaws, of course, but why carp? Yep, this is the best of Benson, right enough. :tup:

#4 ACE

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Posted 01 May 2006 - 11:46 PM

My favourite Raymond Benson Bonds in descending order.

The Novels
1.) Never Dream Of Dying 2001
2.) Doubleshot 2000
3.) Zero Minus Ten 1997
4.) High Time To Kill 1999
5.) The Man With The Red Tattoo 2002
6.) The Facts of Death 1998

The Short Stories
1.) Blast From The Past 1997
2.) Live At Five 1999
3.) Midsummer Night

#5 Double-Oh Agent

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 01:44 AM

I'd rank the Benson novels this way:

1. High Time To Kill
2. Zero Minus Ten
3. Doubleshot
4. The Man With The Red Tattoo
5. Never Dream Of Dying
6. The Facts Of Death



Short stories:

1. Blast From The Past
2. Midsummer Night's Doom
3. Live At Five

By the way, I'd sure like to see where Benson's The Heart Of Erzulie fits in this list. :tup:

#6 Qwerty

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 02:07 AM

????? “Blast From The Past” Haven't read it yet - the only one I've yet to obtain
:D Zero Minus Ten
[censored] Tomorrow Never Dies
:tup: The Facts Of Death
[censored] “Midsummer Nights Doom”
:D High Time To Kill
:D The World Is Not Enough
:( “Live At Five”
[censored] Doubleshot
[censored] Never Dream Of Dying
[censored] The Man With The Red Tattoo
[censored] Die Another Day

Favourite: A constant toss-up between The Facts Of Death and High Time To Kill.

#7 Double-Oh Agent

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 05:31 AM

Qwerty, can you add a poll? Thanks. :tup:

#8 Jim

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 07:15 AM

Poll added

#9 Double-Oh Agent

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 07:33 AM

Thanks Jim for this poll and all the other novel polls.

#10 dinovelvet

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 08:46 AM

Heh well as I said in the other thread, my fave is The Man with the Red Tattoo. A chillingly plausible modern day terrorist threat which just has that Bond-like edge of the surreal and eccentric to it, in a vividly depicted modern day Japan; and not just the touristy places either, Benson takes us everywhere and shows us the "real" Japan. A colorful supporting cast adds to the fun, most notably the return of Tiger Tanaka and a dwarf who may or may not be some kind of supernatural figure :tup:
My least favorite is The Facts of Death...I guess I didn't really care for the villain or his scheme, and the maths angle didn't particularly do it for me, but there were some nice moments like the return of Felix, and I enjoyed the Texas scenes. The whole sperm bank bit was getting into Roger Moore raising-his-eyebrows territory though :D

#11 MarcAngeDraco

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 10:32 AM

Fav Novel: High Time To Kill
Fav Sh. Story: Blast from the past
Least Fav Novel: Probably Facts of Death

#12 tdalton

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Posted 03 May 2006 - 07:32 AM

Favorite novel: Never Dream of Dying
Least Favorite novel: Zero Minus Ten

#13 The Admiral

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Posted 03 May 2006 - 10:59 AM

High Time To Kill.

It was the first Benson I read, and has remained my favourite. It'd be Benson's choice if any of his novels were to be turned into a film.

#14 Robert Watts

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Posted 04 May 2006 - 09:17 AM

In all due respect, isn't the "I don't like any of Raymond Benson's short stories" redundant without a similar option for the novels? I voted for the novels based on which one in my opinion was the best- but it doesn't mean I thought any of them were very good, and seeing as the thread is about picking his better efforts- whether you liked them or not.

#15 Qwerty

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Posted 04 May 2006 - 03:17 PM

By the way, I'd sure like to see where Benson's The Heart Of Erzulie fits in this list. :tup:


You and I both.

#16 Qwerty

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Posted 15 September 2007 - 10:16 PM

Thought I'd bump this one up.

#17 MarkA

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Posted 15 September 2007 - 11:49 PM

Best Benson novel. Well the ones I forced myself to read were an ordeal. The rest I listened to on audio to and fro to work were laughable. Fan boy fiction at it's worst. The man should never have been given the chance. Truly terrible all of them. Thank god the Fleming estate saw sense and dumped him.

#18 DLibrasnow

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Posted 16 September 2007 - 01:27 AM

:D “Blast from the Past”
:D Zero Minus Ten
:cooltongue: Tomorrow Never Dies
:angry: The Facts Of Death
:lol: “Midsummer Night's Doom”
:D High Time To Kill
:) The World Is Not Enough
:D “Live at Five”
:D Doubleshot
:D Never Dream Of Dying
:D The Man With The Red Tattoo
:D Die Another Day

Favourite: A toss-up for me between High Time To Kill and Doubleshot

#19 Qwerty

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Posted 16 September 2007 - 10:20 PM

Having finally tracked down a copy of “Blast from the Past”, I'd rate that short story as :cooltongue: My least fave of the three short stories.

#20 Mr Twilight

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 04:02 PM

Novels
1.) Zero Minus Ten
2.) High Time To Kill
2.) The Man With The Red Tattoo
4.) Never Dream Of Dying
5.) Doubleshot
6.) The Facts of Death

I must split the silver medal for HTTK and TMWTRT.

Novelizations
1.) Tomorrow never dies
2.) Die another day
3.) The world is not enough

TMD is far better than the other.

Short Stories
1.) Blast From The Past
2.) Live At Five
3.) Midsummer Night

#21 Double-Oh Agent

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 11:19 PM

I'd rank the Benson novels this way:

1. High Time To Kill
2. Zero Minus Ten
3. Doubleshot
4. The Man With The Red Tattoo
5. Never Dream Of Dying
6. The Facts Of Death



Short stories:

1. Blast From The Past
2. Midsummer Night's Doom
3. Live At Five

By the way, I'd sure like to see where Benson's The Heart Of Erzulie fits in this list. :cooltongue:

I guess I never did the novelizations. Here are my choices:

1. Tomorrow Never Dies
2. Die Another Day
3. The World Is Not Enough

#22 Napoleon Solo

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Posted 11 November 2007 - 01:21 AM

High Time to Kill.

#23 The White Tuxedo

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Posted 11 November 2007 - 10:57 AM

Best Benson novel. Well the ones I forced myself to read were an ordeal. The rest I listened to on audio to and fro to work were laughable. Fan boy fiction at it's worst. The man should never have been given the chance. Truly terrible all of them. Thank god the Fleming estate saw sense and dumped him.


Bingo! I've had more fun reading instruction manuals. I admire his work as a Bond scholar, and maybe he had a few decent ideas. But they were horribly executed.

#24 deth

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Posted 12 December 2007 - 08:22 PM

is there any place to obtain his short stories? online perhaps?

#25 Qwerty

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Posted 12 December 2007 - 09:10 PM

is there any place to obtain his short stories? online perhaps?


Nope - only in their original publications. The TV Guide containing “Live at Five” is fairly easy to come by on eBay, while the two Playboys for “Midsummer Night's Doom” and “Blast from the Past” are much more difficult.

#26 Harmsway

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 07:20 AM

"Zero Minus Ten". Exotic and atmospheric locations, brought to life very well, some low-key humour that actually works, and more than a glimmer of Flemmmming's Bond.... all of it set around one of the great events of recent years. The book has flaws, of course, but why carp? Yep, this is the best of Benson, right enough. :(

Have you read DOUBLESHOT, Loomster? A while ago, I seem to recall that you hadn't. It's my favorite of Benson's output.

#27 quantumofsolace

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 09:09 AM

is there any place to obtain his short stories? online perhaps?


Blast From The Past . one short story by Raymond Benson can be got as part of the Union trilogy. Look for it online and you can buy it

#28 Loomis

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 01:36 PM

"Zero Minus Ten". Exotic and atmospheric locations, brought to life very well, some low-key humour that actually works, and more than a glimmer of Flemmmming's Bond.... all of it set around one of the great events of recent years. The book has flaws, of course, but why carp? Yep, this is the best of Benson, right enough. :(

Have you read DOUBLESHOT, Loomster? A while ago, I seem to recall that you hadn't. It's my favorite of Benson's output.


Nope, still haven't read it.

#29 quantumofsolace

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 02:06 PM

Read it. I am sure you will enjoy it . Lot's of fun. The girls are great.

#30 MattofSteel

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 02:55 AM

It's always been a very close call between Never Dream of Dying and High Time To Kill for me.


Same for me. NDOD is a very emotional story with intriguing characters and some great twists. But HTTK is just such a wonderfully written balance of all the Bond elements, falling somewhere between the literary Bond of Fleming and the cinematic one he often tipped his hat to. Plus, it's certainly his best plot.




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