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SPOILERS: Member Reviews of Carte Blanche


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Poll: What did you think of Carte Blanche - having read it?

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Having read it...

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With which of the following statements would you agree?

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On a rating of 10 to 0, 10 being deliciousness and 0 being a bit like having one's face levered off with a claw hammer, I rate CARTE BLANCHE

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Were Jeffery Deaver to write another one, I would say...

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#181 Jack Spang

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 11:24 PM

I'm starting to lose faith in the adult Bond books. I really, really hope Higson returns to write a series of books based on Bond's adventures in WW2 (20 something Bond). If so, I wonder if he'll have Bond smoke.

For me, the cinematic Bond and the adult literary Bond pretty much died at the onset of the 1990's. I say "pretty much" because Casino Royale Reboot is a good film and there were good bits in the last few lacklustre Gardner novels and Benson books. Will he be resurrected? I'm just not sure. At the moment I actually like the contemporary cinematic Bond (Craig's Bond) more than the contemporary literary Bond (Deaver's Bond). As I said though, I'm all for Deaver writing another if he's the only author available or/and who IFP want. For me, better a Bond book than no Bond book. There are other Flemingsque elements in his novel...just not Bond himself. Plus, he writes a good yarn.

Personally, I can't understand why some people say they see Craig's Bond in Deaver's Bond. Craig's portrayal of the character is closer to Fleming's original creation than Deaver's. The latter is an overly nice, overly politically correct, sensitive new age guy who lacks the coldness of his former self along with a number of other character traits. I almost see Ben Affleck. God forbid!

#182 Jack Spang

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 11:38 PM

I would love Higson to write 5 or more books about Bond's adventures during WW2 (this, Higson has mentioned), then 5 or more post WW2 following Bond's recruitment into the service and his early assignments pre Casino Royale then regular books either set between his assignments during the 50's and 60's or post The Man With The Golden Gun. I wouldn't object to Higson writing contemporary Bond books but I think Bond's history in terms of the Fleming adventures should remain intact and referred to every once and a while with the dates altered as Deaver did regarding the death of Bond's parents.

#183 TCK

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 10:55 PM

On the whole I've enjoyed Carte Blanche, but I think the novel has some flaws which bother the reading. Before going into more details, I must point out that it was my first non-Fleming James Bond novel, ant the approach question came to me so. Did I have to break the habit of reading Ian Fleming ? Did I have to take the movies into account, as they have changed the character since 1962 ? I don't know if the same problem came for you if it was your first non-Fleming reading too, but I did have many questions before starting the reading yet.

I think anything can't replace Ian Fleming's style and his vision of the character as he was, is and will remain James Bond's creator. Despite this, Jeffery Deaver used a lot of elements which make us feel as if we were in a Ian Fleming's novel. For instance there are many descriptions about places, weapons or foods, and he also used a fairly technical vocabulary, which is interesting, exciting, and it makes an authentic plot. Fortunately there is an ending glossary by the way. But there is also a historical and geopolitical importance, with many details too, and I enjoyed it especially in the early chapters. I wasn't disappointed so much with his style so (even though I read the French translation...) except for one thing. I didn't recognize the James Bond atmosphere so much, especially when all our senses were on alert in Fleming's. He created sad, disturbing and dramatic stories while Jeffery Deaver "only" created a filthy one. So, despite few rares exceptions, I wasn't disappointed.

I really enjoyed Severan Hydt, awesome villain. His morbid fetishism is horrible and makes our blood freezing. It's strange because, an aunt of mine passed away late June, and when I discovered how repulsive Hydt was, I was horrified but also admiring for Deaver uses the perfect words to describe his necrophilia. The cadaveric smell and the macabre colours almost came in my mind. It was a very strange feeling I had.
I didn't recognize the James Bond atmosphere so much, especially when all our senses were on alert in Fleming's.
Well, here I did. The single moments anyway.

The biggest problem is the way James Bond operates within this world, too easily. He's almost too strong, too clever, and is always one length ahead of his enemies. Except him, everybody seems incompetent, especially Felix Leiter.

A little word about the French translation. That's probably the worst thing I have ever read. Catastrophic punctuation (it lacks full stops at the end of sentences...), many many spelling mistakes, and some passages vanished during the translation, in James Bond's description for instance... I regret having bought the French translation instead of the original version. 0/20 for you Flammarion. :tdown: :tdown: :rolleyes: I won't make that mistake again.

To conclude. 14/20. Quite good James Bond novel, even better than some Fleming's (Goldfinger, Man with the golden gun and perhaps Diamonds are forever too) and I'll enjoy reading Carte Blanche again, on the original version of course. I'll probably resell the French one.

#184 00Kevin

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 09:52 PM

I gave it a 7, I felt myself very excited with early parts of the novel, but had less enthusiasm as I got later in the book. I had a great time reading the Serbia section and all the backstories (bond, ODG, bond's parents). one scene that really had me tense was when bond is desperatly trying to save liter from the machine in Dubai...knowing what happened in the novel 'live and let die' and the film 'license to kill' I suspected felix was about to get shredded. Dunne was interesting from the begining, from the serbia section on I was intrigued.

Deaver tried to make a colorful crazy villian in Hydt but I never really felt satisfied with him as a villian... nor was i satisfied with felicity willing. as the story went on it left alot to be desired and ultimatly it was several twists too many; the constant twists made the novel seem like a big joke in the end (I'm reminded of indiana jones 4... "so you're a..." *counts fingers* "...triple agent?")

would i still like to see another bond novel? of course! should deaver write it? perhaps, if he comes up with a more satisfying villian and limits the plot twists then by all means

#185 rafterman

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Posted 09 October 2011 - 06:56 AM

First, not liking the book doesn't mean people didn't read it or went in expecting to hate it.

Second, I didn't love the book. I had problems with it. But, yes, I wanted to love it. Of course I wanted it to be good, but it was just 'meh.' I felt there was far too much time spend setting up the weird organization of the ODG, with Bond spending so much time in the office. Too much information, too complex and too many people. Why the need for Philly and Moneypenny? It felt like ideas that should have been spread out through multiple novels. It was like a TV pilot of stuff. I also felt the plot was just kind of blah without a great villain or plan. I did like the spy work involved, but I didn't care what he was trying to stop. The one week timetable is not something I think works. It's an easy plot to use since you have a clear structure, but it limits things too. Overall the book is overstuffed and tries to hard to be modern and reinvent something for no reason. Yet it's also not very different. Casino Royale was fresh and modern but didn't bother being anything other than Bond's first mission. Carte Blanche tried to do too much and ultimately fails for me because the plot is just not that interesting and it all gets solved far too neatly at the end.

#186 DamnCoffee

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 03:30 AM

Oh, I finished Carte Blanche, by the way. I really enjoyed it. :redface:

Probably because I'm not that up on the Literary Bond. It's probably my weakest medium in the Bond series. I dunno, I thought it was a damn good book. The only thing I didn't like was the insane amount of Chapters. I mean 70, really? Sometimes I felt that there wasn't that much need for so many. Some chapters just continued on from the last one, almost immediately. But I loved the references to the modern media. Nice Doctor Who mention, and a good few Harry Potter ones.


7/10.

#187 Nicolas Suszczyk

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Posted 05 November 2011 - 09:36 PM

I felt it like a mixture of Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace turned out in a book. It was addictive, and that was good, but I don't like Mr Deaver teaching me about the world of espionage and introduced 3000 organizations behind or after Bond. And I really prefer Mr Gorner before that idiot that wonkers with corpses. Bheka Jordaan felt unnattractive to me, as Lamb and Percy which were useless characters.

PS. I've absolutely hated all the Harry Potter, iPhone, Facebook, Matt Damon, and Leo DiCaprio references. It was like shouting LOOK, WE'RE IN 2011!!!

PS2nd. Bond parents spies killed in an intentional "accident"? WTF! :rolleyes:


6,50/10

#188 OmarB

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 01:08 AM

Not any difference than any of the other then contemporary references by previous author.

#189 Harry Fawkes

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 11:09 AM

I decided to revisit the book after reading it once and I can now say that I really enjoyed it. First time I read it I was going through a bad patch and couldn't focus too much on it (Survival Course in Finland) but a couple of weeks ago I read it as I should have read it in the first place - absorbed and focused - and I gave Carte Blanche 9 out of 10.

#190 nickjb007

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 07:20 PM

Just finished the book this morning. In all I've probably read five-six bond books, Fleming and Benson. I didn't like this book. I enjoyed the updates bringing Bond into the 21st Century. My main complaints is that I didn't think this book was Bond, the things that shocked me the most is the view that he cares so much about saving lives, when I watched the movies or read the books I felt like Bond saved the world because it was his job and for Queen and Country. Also, I think of Bond as being a cold blooded killer, when he decides not to shoot one of the security guard because of his youth I thought was a little bit out there for a double 0 agent. I did not like the subplot about his parents. I will say the book has peaked my interest in reading more Bond books.

#191 Simon

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Posted 27 September 2012 - 08:58 AM

I finally read this book after deciding to give it the best chance possible of an under-the-radar / no expectations type experience. i.e. that being devoid of the hype of count-downs and marketing flourishes.

And erm, I think Jim's Harry Potter take on it is about as close to the mark as it gets. I certainly read at a pace but knew not why. The tactic of keeping plot machinations and thereby motives under wraps until the end made me wonder several times, why I was continuing to read. And the then following twists and turns didn't really fill the gap of the preceding 200-300 pages. There is no sense of evil power, danger or even a real enemy that a half decent policeman might not be able overcome. And the Carte Blanche aspect seemed only to be really put to the test when confronting the Sth African policewoman's investigating legalities. Did I miss anything?

I haven't read any of Deaver's other books so cannot say whether this is prevalent to his writing style or just the task of taking on the Bond mantle. Faulkes has written some superb stuff, but made a complete hash of DMC - maybe this is the challenge one faces. Good luck Mr Boyd.

As a reading experience, it was better than Devil May Care but my attentions may now be turned to reading the YB books that I have intentionally stayed away from until now-ish. I gave Silverfin to my nephew for a birthday and both he and the parents have found it to be splendid.

#192 S K Y F A L L

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 03:30 AM

Just voted. My Votes;

 

Having read it...

-Staring at the glass and wondering what to make of it; undecided, stop asking me questions, my brain hurts

 

With which of the following statements would you agree?

-It'll take another book for me to decide either way (guess that wont be happening...)

 

On a rating of 10 to 0, 10 being deliciousness and 0 being a bit like having one's face levered off with a claw hammer, I rate CARTE BLANCHE

-Four-er

 

Were Jeffery Deaver to write another one, I would say...

-No thank you, but in a shockingly unexpected double twist you thought this was going to mean yes please when actually it was no thank you all along 

 

I wrote a really brief snip-it of my thoughts in another thread see below;  

Anyway I just finished it and am still taking it all in, just a few thoughts came to mind. 

Wasn't what I was quit expecting though I'm not sure what I was expecting. I liked his back story and the subplot however wasn't really into the main plot. I didn't really like any of Bond and Felix's or Tanner's dialog together although I was pleased to have Goodnight in the novel. Some of the name drops were interesting but some where also off putting to me, for example I think he mentions the Bourne series. I didn't really care much for the villain either. Being in Dubia kind of reminded me of Mission Impossible IV when they kept mentioning the Burj Khalifa but I was pleased they also mention the Burj Al Arab which looks like a sail..






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