Jump to content


Photo

William Boyd's Bond novel to be set in Africa?


  • Please log in to reply
15 replies to this topic

#1 glidrose

glidrose

    Lt. Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPip
  • 1711 posts

Posted 31 May 2012 - 11:23 PM

According to the Spectator

As for where the action will be set, did he give a clue at the recent Oxford Literary Festival? He said that he was working on a novel set in Africa. You could assume that he was referring to the new Bond book, but with the prolific Boyd you can’t be sure. But I like the idea of Bond being blown around post-colonial Africa on the winds of change.


Our own Zencat had his take,

I also like the idea of Bond "being blown around post-colonial Africa" (in 1969), but I'm thinking The Spectator has it wrong here. Certainly Boyd hasn't started on his Bond book yet; this Africa book is probably his next original novel. And as Jeffery Deaver set a large part of Carte Blanche in South Africa, it's unlikely IFP would want to repeat the location so soon (but Boyd did say IFP allow their Bond authors to do their own thing).


I think the African book Boyd refers to is indeed his Bond novel.

Look at his recent bibliography:

Restless, 2006
Ordinary Thunderstorms, 2009
Waiting for Sunrise, 2012
untitled James Bond novel, 2013

Three years between each novel. No way he'll sneak another original novel in. Has to be Bond. Boyd made that Africa comment on 31 March 2012.

The James Bond memes blog digs a little deeper:

James Bond in 1969 - an update

In a recent post, I speculated about the events William Boyd might refer to in his forthcoming James Bond novel in order to root the narrative to 1969, the year in which the novel will be set. I wonder whether the author's 2002 novel, Any Human Heart, provides a little more insight.

The novel takes the form of a journal, which is written intermittently by the protagonist Logan Mountstuart between the early 1920s and the early 1990s. The journal covers, among other episodes, Mountstuart's school days, his time at Oxford University, his early career as a writer, his experience in naval intelligence during the second world war (having been recruited by Ian Fleming - more on that in a later post), and his time in New York running an art gallery.

In 1969, Mountstuart is teaching English in Nigeria. Through Mountstuart's journal, William Boyd refers to the Moon landing (something I thought might be mentioned in the Bond novel), and places Mountstuart in the centre of the Nigerian civil war (also known as the Biafran War), which lasted from July 1967 to January 1970.

Given Boyd's knowledge of the region (he grew up in Nigeria and set a novel in West Africa), it is possible that he might turn again to Africa, and we might at least see a reference to Nigeria and the Biafran War in his awaited Bond novel.



According to the Goodreads website, "Boyd was born in Accra, Ghana on 7th March, 1952 and spent much of his early life there and in Nigeria where his mother was a teacher and his father, a doctor. Boyd was in Nigeria during the Biafran War, the brutal secessionist conflict which ran from 1967 to 1970 and it had a profound effect on him."

Is it possible Boyd's Bond novel will focus on the Biafran War? For those interested Freddie ("The Day of the Jackal") Forsyth's first book, The Biafra Story, takes a very pro-Biafra stance. Forsyth was a war correspondent during the conflict. link one link two Apparently Forsyth got himself blacklisted from media circles at the time for his pro-Biafra stance. "[Forsyth] returned to a particularly frigid London, worn out from reporting on the Biafran conflict. Unemployed, sleeping on a friend's couch and badly in need of cash, he sat down at his bullet-scarred portable typewriter and began bashing out a novel he'd conceived years earlier, as a "junior junior" foreign correspondent in Paris."

Wikipedia claims Britain and the Soviet Union(!) gave Nigeria millitary support, while Canada(!) and France helped Biafra. The United States remained out of the conflict but unofficially was more pro-Biafra. Britain played a crucial part turning the war in Nigeria's favor in the final days.

BP ("British Petroleum") seems to have played a part in Nigeria's history and the Biafran conflict. I'll post more about that after I read up on it.

Edited by glidrose, 31 May 2012 - 11:30 PM.


#2 007jamesbond

007jamesbond

    Lt. Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPip
  • 1248 posts
  • Location:Vancouver

Posted 01 June 2012 - 01:00 AM

I guess this would be a good thing since he has previous knowledge of this area and would help in describing it which would help a lot...I think it will likely be reference and in the background but not the main focus of the novel if that is the case

#3 glidrose

glidrose

    Lt. Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPip
  • 1711 posts

Posted 15 April 2013 - 07:43 PM

'scuse me while I finish patting myself on the back.

 

So it's Africa in 1969.

 

Let's see what was happening there that year...

 

Nigeria: The Biafran War winding down. The United States not involved in that one apparently.

 

Libya: Muammar Gaddafi stages a coup on September 1st 1969. The United States not involved in that either. They were caught off-guard by the coup as they'd been keeping tabs on some other splinter group. The U.S. and U.K. quickly recognized Gaddafi's new government, even tried befriending him hoping to keep their military bases, but Gaddafi kicked them out in June 1970.

 

South Africa: Nelson Mandela captured on August 5th 1969.

 

Ghana: Had parliamentary election on 29 August 1969, its first since the 1966 coup. The newly installed leader deported Nigerian aliens.

 

Egypt: still at war with Israel ("The War of Attrition" 1967-1970).

 

Kenya: parliamentary elections on August 29th 1969. The first since gaining independence in 1963. The newly elected government sided with the west in the Cold War.

 

Anybody major in African history?



#4 zencat

zencat

    Commander GCMG

  • Commanding Officers
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 25808 posts
  • Location:Studio City, CA

Posted 15 April 2013 - 08:07 PM

Great job, glidrose!

 

I just posted some thoughts on the announced locations. I equally excited that Bond is going to the USA. It's been a long time.

 

http://www.thebookbo...ca-and-usa.html



#5 glidrose

glidrose

    Lt. Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPip
  • 1711 posts

Posted 15 April 2013 - 08:15 PM

"This will also mark the first African adventure for Bond within the classic Fleming timeline"

 

Not true. The Hildebrand Rarity took place on and around the Seychelles islands, off the coast of Africa.

 

And let's not forget Per Fine Ounce, though technically most people don't include an unpublished, probably lost work.



#6 zencat

zencat

    Commander GCMG

  • Commanding Officers
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 25808 posts
  • Location:Studio City, CA

Posted 15 April 2013 - 08:23 PM

Oh, oops. Thanks. I zap that.

 

I don't consider Per Fine Ounce part of the Bond canon. Because it was unpublished. Also because I'm not convinced it was ever even a finished manuscript.



#7 007jamesbond

007jamesbond

    Lt. Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPip
  • 1248 posts
  • Location:Vancouver

Posted 15 April 2013 - 11:29 PM

didn't Bond go to Africa in DAF at the end of the novel even though it was like one chapter on it 



#8 Ed83

Ed83

    Midshipman

  • Crew
  • 78 posts
  • Location:Texas

Posted 15 April 2013 - 11:41 PM

didn't Bond go to Africa in DAF at the end of the novel even though it was like one chapter on it 

 

I believe you are correct.  I just finished reading this one not long ago.



#9 glidrose

glidrose

    Lt. Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPip
  • 1711 posts

Posted 15 April 2013 - 11:42 PM

didn't Bond go to Africa in DAF at the end of the novel even though it was like one chapter on it 

 

Sierra Leone. Full marks to you sir!



#10 zencat

zencat

    Commander GCMG

  • Commanding Officers
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 25808 posts
  • Location:Studio City, CA

Posted 16 April 2013 - 12:20 AM

'scuse me while I finish patting myself on the back.

 

So it's Africa in 1969.

 

Let's see what was happening there that year...

 

Nigeria: The Biafran War winding down. The United States not involved in that one apparently.

 

Libya: Muammar Gaddafi stages a coup on September 1st 1969. The United States not involved in that either. They were caught off-guard by the coup as they'd been keeping tabs on some other splinter group. The U.S. and U.K. quickly recognized Gaddafi's new government, even tried befriending him hoping to keep their military bases, but Gaddafi kicked them out in June 1970.

 

South Africa: Nelson Mandela captured on August 5th 1969.

 

Ghana: Had parliamentary election on 29 August 1969, its first since the 1966 coup. The newly installed leader deported Nigerian aliens.

 

Egypt: still at war with Israel ("The War of Attrition" 1967-1970).

 

Kenya: parliamentary elections on August 29th 1969. The first since gaining independence in 1963. The newly elected government sided with the west in the Cold War.

 

Anybody major in African history?

 

According to Vanity Fair, here's something Boyd said today that goes a bit beyond what was in the press release:

 

"He goes on a real mission to real countries and the world he's in is absolutely 1969. There are no gimmicks, it's a real spy story. . . there is a very precise reason why I chose that year."



#11 007jamesbond

007jamesbond

    Lt. Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPip
  • 1248 posts
  • Location:Vancouver

Posted 16 April 2013 - 01:13 AM

I would assume that Bond will be involved in some kind of real life event that happen in Africa maybe even meet the real life leader or a reference but they are not the villain but someone else is 



#12 zencat

zencat

    Commander GCMG

  • Commanding Officers
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 25808 posts
  • Location:Studio City, CA

Posted 16 April 2013 - 01:54 AM

Be cool of it had something to do with the moon landing. Moonraker 2 baby!!!



#13 Ed83

Ed83

    Midshipman

  • Crew
  • 78 posts
  • Location:Texas

Posted 16 April 2013 - 02:09 AM

Be cool of it had something to do with the moon landing. Moonraker 2 baby!!!

Double up!



#14 zencat

zencat

    Commander GCMG

  • Commanding Officers
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 25808 posts
  • Location:Studio City, CA

Posted 16 April 2013 - 05:14 PM

I don't consider Per Fine Ounce part of the Bond canon. Because it was unpublished. Also because I'm not convinced it was ever even a finished manuscript.

Looks like I'm wrong about this (as well). There is evidence that it was a finished manuscript. But IFP doesn't have a copy. But cool if it turns up some day.



#15 Matt_13

Matt_13

    Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 5465 posts
  • Location:USA

Posted 16 April 2013 - 06:53 PM

Cape Canaveral anybody?

#16 glidrose

glidrose

    Lt. Commander

  • Veterans
  • PipPipPip
  • 1711 posts

Posted 16 April 2013 - 07:40 PM

I don't consider Per Fine Ounce part of the Bond canon. Because it was unpublished. Also because I'm not convinced it was ever even a finished manuscript.

Looks like I'm wrong about this (as well). There is evidence that it was a finished manuscript. But IFP doesn't have a copy. But cool if it turns up some day.

 

I'm convinced it was a finished manuscript. Jenkins had a reputation for being a fast writer, perhaps too fast a writer. He could churn out between 3,000 and 12,000 words a day. He says he wrote the last 45 pages - approximately 18,000 words - of his first novel A Twist of Sand between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. on a single Sunday. Ain't gonna take him long to write a 70,000 word Bond novel.

 

Here's a nifty interview from 1961 LINK


Edited by glidrose, 16 April 2013 - 07:46 PM.





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users