If - if - Project X turns out to be a new "adult" Bond novel, then I suggest that we don't count our chickens this time (and I was as guilty as anyone of doing that last time).
Even if IFP has landed one of the greatest writers on earth, because they did that with Faulks, and look how badly we got burned.
It is awfully hard to come after Fleming; and come up with something decent at that. All thinkable more abitious approaches are bound to disappoint part of the audience from some point onwards, so the main aim might be now to publish something that doesn't offend too much. The wider reading public is not too familiar with the books, so most didn't mind DMC particularly, I daresay. It was our own high hopes after Faulks's announcement that were so fiercely disappointed.
I wonder if I had been so critical of DMC, had it been published under pen name? The book wouldn't have been one iota better, but my expectations would have been considerably lower. We've been arguing here that Faulks name was such a massive publicity stunt and pushed sales beyond imagination, but did it really?
Faulks's regular readers are not exactly the types much into Bond, if they aren't fans anyway, so most of his readership probably bought the book more out of curiosity and for reasons of completeness. As ambitious literature goes, Faulks is very successful (and absolutely rightfully so), but still hardly a raving bestseller. I daresay DMC is probably Faulks's topseller by a fair margin, and will stay so till he stops writing. I actually think Faulks has profited more from 'James Bond novel' and 'writing as Ian Fleming' on the cover, than DMC profited from 'Sebastian Faulks'.
My point here is, sales figures of DMC mostly were so fantastical (I suppose they were, don't I?) because of the media hype, tinsel, PR stunts and all that jazz. And they would probably have been exactly the same, had the cover of DMC held an alias such as 'Robert Markham'.
Or, to come finally back to the topic at hand here, a pen name such as 'Project X'
I even wonder if the mystery about the author would not add considerably to the experience? I'd certainly never have guessed Faulks to be behind DMC.