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Canonicity of Bond continuation novels


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#1 seawolfnyy

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 02:14 PM

I'm wondering about the timeline of '60s Bond now having had 4 different authors pen books in this time period. Does each author represent a different 'what if?' timeline? Or do they all to some varying degree exist together. I think it's safe to say that Sebastian Faulks ignored Colonel Sun for Devil May Care, same goes for Boyd with Solo. Trigger Mortis takes place earlier in the timeline, so it's canonicity is even more muddled. Personally, I think that, as readers, we could essentially define what we think is canon and what isn't. As it stands, I believe all 4 of these continuation novels exist in alternate timelines. I would welcome really any of them to have another attempt, but leave out the drug angle.

 

P.S. I really am only interested in the '60s set Bond novels. I never was able to get into the John Gardner novels (Bond does NOT drive a Saab people) and the Raymond Benson additions are nothing more than expensive pieces of fan fiction. Jeffrey Deaver had a decent entry and I wouldn't mind another novel to expand on the universe he created. That said, Carte Blanche also suffered from the same thing that the rest of the contemporary Bond novels suffer from. It just wants to be a movie.



#2 Karloff

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 03:59 PM

IMO, one can make the argument that Colonel Sun, Devil May Care, Solo and Trigger Mortis all take place in the same universe/timeline as Fleming's books. I would call them all part of the canon, although especially CS.
 
I would argue that Colonel Sun has much more of a canonical status than any of the subsequent continuation novels. There are several reasons for this.
 
Firstly, Kingsley Amis was the only continuation author who had been involved in the work with one of Ian Fleming's own Bond books (TMWTGG - although his notes weren't used) and who had had personal contact with him (Fleming had given Amis' The James Bond Dossier his blessing before he died according to the foreword i the CS paperback from '91). Therefore i believe that Amis had a sort of special insight into Fleming's writing.
 
The fact that CS was published in 1968, and thus was written in the same time period as the original novels also means that it has a special status. Other continuation novels have either moved Bond to the contemporary times in which the books were written (80s for Gardner, 90s for Benson and 00's for Deaver) or become some sort of "historical novels" when books written in the 21st century (Faulks, Boyd, Horowitz) take place in the 1960s. So either the time setting has changed and therefore Bond has become something of a different character, or he has been left in the 60's, but written from a contemporary perspective. That is not the case with Colonel Sun, and this makes the book more authentic to me.
 
This is also the only continuation novel that was made into a comic strip in the Daily Express, by Jim Lawrence and Yaroslav Horak, who also adapted the later Fleming stories and treated CS as a natural continuation of these.
 
Furthermore, this is the continuation novel which has come closest to be filmed as part of the official EON series. Harry Saltzman had been involved in the making of Jeoffrey Jenkins' novel Per Fine Ounce. When Glidrose chose to publish Colonel Sun instead of Jenkins's book Saltzman dismissed the idea of ‚Äč‚Äčever turning Amis' book into a film. When Saltzman left the film series, there was talk of using Amis' book as the basis for a film. Amis, however, had several times publicly badmouthed Roger Moore's Bond films, which Broccoli didn't appreciate and he was therefore reluctant to film the book. (source
 
Despite this, elements from the book have been used in a few Bond films; M's kidnapping and imprisonment on an island (TWINE) and the title character was featured in DAD. (Although his name was changed to Colonel Tan-Sun Moon instead of Colonel Sun Liang-tan... but come on!).
 
So because of these reasons IMO CS is as canonical as Fleming's books.
 
The other books by Faulks, Boyd and Horowitz I feel could be viewed as canonical, unless there is blatant contradictions and inconsistencies when compared to Fleming's books and CS. I know some people think that Devil May Care contradicts CS, but I have no memory of this. I think it's OK if one book doesn't mention the events of another, as long as it isn't too obvious a contradiction (even Fleming contradicted himself sometimes - for example about the location of Royale-les-Eaux).
 
Therefore I regard DMC, Solo and TM as taking place in the same timeline/universe as the Fleming books and CS. Even some small contradictions are easier to swallow than the age-less, eternally youthful Bond of the Gardner/Benson books.
 


#3 David_M

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 04:47 PM

If it's Sherlock Holmes and Conan Doyle wrote it, it's canon.  If it's James Bond and Ian Fleming wrote it, it's canon.

Everything else is apocryphal.  



#4 PrinceKamalKhan

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 10:45 PM

If it's Sherlock Holmes and Conan Doyle wrote it, it's canon.  If it's James Bond and Ian Fleming wrote it, it's canon.

Everything else is apocryphal.  

 

This. After Fleming(RIP) departed from this world, everything piece of fiction written post-that about Bond is basically fan fiction. Some of it may be very entertaining fan fiction but it's still fan fiction nonetheless.



#5 Tiin007

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 12:10 AM

I've often thought about this question as well.

 

Personally, I'd say that the continuation novels are indeed canon, but only inasmuch as they do not conflict with Fleming's works. How can Bond still be an active agent in the 80s and 90s? Well, I try to suspend disbelief a little, essentially viewing the Gardner and Benson works as creating a "floating timeline" when it comes to the earlier novels (much the same way as I view all the Bond movies through 2002 as occurring within the same timeline). 

 

Truth is, the continuation novels really are a mixed bag. Contrary to popular consensus, I found Colonel Sun to be fairly overrated, and I quite enjoyed Deaver's Carte Blanche. Deaver did a great job at modernizing Bond without a complete overhaul of the literary character we grew up with. I really wish IFP had continued in his reboot of the novels-- just as EON continued in their Craig-era reboot. 

 

As for Gardner and Benson, their output was of varying quality. I tend to prefer early Gardner (plus Nobody Lives Forever and Scorpius, which was perhaps my favorite of his) over later Gardner and Benson. Gardner's later works all felt too "by the book," particularly as they all wound up with a total page count that never veered more than five or seven pages from the mean. Almost gave me the impression that he was writing them more as a scientist than an artist. I am currently in the middle of the Benson novels-- while I wasn't in love with his first two works, I just finished High Time to Kill, and it is currently in my top five Bond continuation novels of all time. Truly as much of a masterpiece as a Bond novel can be without Fleming. I'm very much looking forward to where Benson takes the Union (I know he penned a "trilogy" with the organization as the villains). 

 

I think the biggest problem with the literary Bond now is one of consistency. Gardner penned 14 novels, Benson 6 (plus 3 short stories), and Higson 5. But since then, one almost gets the feeling that IFP are hiring Bond authors on a one-off basis, especially since the new authors (Faulks, Deaver, Boyd, and Horowitz) are fairly high profile. I'd rather have a no-name that can write and is willing to commit to a sizable number of works than this one-and-done pattern we've been seeing for almost a decade. Especially as Gardner and Benson did just fine in my book. 



#6 AMC Hornet

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 03:02 PM

They did just fine in their books,too.



#7 Walecs

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 06:46 PM

Gardner's books are by far the worst ones.

 

Writing Bond in the 80s AND making him a WWII soldier, meaning he was at least 60 during For Special Services. I understand "suspension of disbelief", but trying to convince me that Bond is still an active agent at 60-70? C'mon...



#8 Karloff

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 07:20 PM

Gardner's books are by far the worst ones.

 

Writing Bond in the 80s AND making him a WWII soldier, meaning he was at least 60 during For Special Services. I understand "suspension of disbelief", but trying to convince me that Bond is still an active agent at 60-70? C'mon...

 

One of my main problems with the Gardner/Benson books is the age thing. I also get the suspension of disbelief thing, but for me it's easier with movies than with books.I have a harder time accepting an ageless book-Bond than an ageless movie-Bond. IMO, the Fleming, Gardner and Benson books can't all take place in the same literary universe. With Gardner's books I try to imagine that the events that took place in Fleming's books happened during the 70's in the Gardner timeline. And in the case of Benson's Bond, they happened in the 80s. That's the only way to reconcile Bond's age with the time setting.  

 

In The Facts of Death (I think it was, at least) Bond visits some kind of nightclub and he observes that most of the young people there were about half his age. That would make Bensons Bond somewhere around forty in that book (assuming the young people at the nightclub are around 20 years old rather than 30). I see this as an indication that Benon's Bond is essentially Pierce Brosnan in book form. And his memories of Tracy, Kissy, Tanaka et al must be from the 80s. So it is a separate timeline/universe/reality from Fleming's.

 

This is why I like the continuation novels by Amis, Faulks, Boyd and now Horowitz better than the Gardner/Benson books. In these novels the events of Fleming's books are still vivid memories of Bond's, not the cloudy, unspecific fragments from the past that they are in the Gardner/Benson books. IMO, they stay truer to the character of Bond and to the world Fleming created and they are able to continue the character arc that Fleming began but never really finished.

 

BTW are you sure Gardner mentions WWII? His Bond is still an ex-navy guy, but does he explicitly state that Bond was involved in the war?



#9 seawolfnyy

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 08:32 PM

That's how I alway felt about Benson's Bond. The only difference is that Benson's smokes and the only time we ever Brosnan smoke was with cigars in Cuba.



#10 AMC Hornet

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 10:25 PM

It must be nice to already have these books available to read (or not) and criticize for their increasingly, necessarily elastic longevity.

 

It must be hell waiting for the new books and authors - one at a time - after they've been announced, and worrying about whether they'll be any good, compared to everything that's come before.

 

Starting in 1981, I didn't care about the gap between CS and JBTSWLM. I had read JG's Liquidator series and cheered for his appointment and started looking forward to each new book directly I finished the last. I didn't feel I had to rationalize Bond's age. He's a fictional character who's outlasted his creator by double his creator's lifetime, and who has moved with the times.

 

The sensible thing to do would be to say, "Bond can't still be an active agent. Time to stop providing new entertainment for the fans. Let 'em keep revisiting the old stories until they get tired of them and move on."

 

The key to success.



#11 David_M

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Posted 18 September 2015 - 04:09 PM

I agree with AMC Hornet, at least sort of.  The films (at least before the Craig era) never fit together into a coherent timeline, and indeed often seemed more akin to modern "legends told 'round the campfire" (ie: "Tell me the same story you told me last time, but add some new bits to surprise me"), so I long ago got used to the idea of treating each entry as a separate "reality" unto itself.

 

This is the also the only way I can enjoy the non-Fleming novels; as interesting variations on a theme, alternate takes, what-ifs, etc.  As long as he's a British agent, heterosexual, reasonably intelligent and lethal, I'll play along. But any attempts to connect the dots to Fleming's canon -- or even the works of other pretenders -- are sure to end in frustration and disappointment.  I'll accept a reference to SPECTRE as a sort of "eternal enemy" to Bond, but name-checks of or flashbacks to Goldfinger, Dr No or other specific 50s and 60s characters and events are always a bad idea.

 

I can't even bring myself to call them "continuation novels" as, for me, they do not continue Fleming's saga.  Bond was so uniquely linked to Fleming -- indeed a sort of alter-ego to him -- that the character really resists continuation in other hands, in a way that less "personal" creations like James T Kirk or Indiana Jones would not.  Even characters like Tarzan and Sherlock Holmes can be (more or less) "continued" by writers talented in the genres of adventure and mystery, respectively, but there's something personal about the Fleming/Bond symbiosis that makes the whole notion of "continuation" seem presumptuous and futile on its face.

 

The bottom line is that where Bond is concerned, the Fleming novels sit on my bookshelf in hardcover, while the non-Flemings are in boxes somewhere (I think), mostly as trade paperbacks.  They're fun enough to spend a few hours on at the beach, but they really don't deserve serious study or "place of honor" on the shelf.  Trying to "tie them in" to Fleming's saga would be as pointless and silly as trying to "explain" why "Jaws" looks different in the "James Bond Jr" cartoon than he does in TSWLM.



#12 Karloff

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Posted 19 September 2015 - 09:52 AM

 

It must be hell waiting for the new books and authors - one at a time - after they've been announced, and worrying about whether they'll be any good, compared to everything that's come before.

 

 

Starting in 1981, I didn't care about the gap between CS and JBTSWLM. I had read JG's Liquidator series and cheered for his appointment and started looking forward to each new book directly I finished the last. I didn't feel I had to rationalize Bond's age. He's a fictional character who's outlasted his creator by double his creator's lifetime, and who has moved with the times.

 

Each to their own, I guess. Either you have a problem with the age thing or you don't.

 

I just feel that although I enjoy the Gardner books they could have done better if they stayed true to Fleming's timeline. One thing that makes the later Fleming books so interesting, IMO, is that the Bond of YOLT isn't the same Bond we met in CR or FRWL. He has been through some stuff, aged, matured and been through tragedies. Bond gets something of a character arc, which makes him more fascinating to me. The books from Fleming's middle period (Dr No, Goldfinger, Thunderball) are to me the least interesting due to the Bond character being in a status quo. In the earlier books Bond was still  being defined as a character and in the later ones he went through a dark personal journey. What Amis did so successfully was to give this dark journey a proper ending. 

 

Bond's attempt on M's life at the start of TMWTGG isn't really addressed later in the book and that story thread is apparently dropped altogether. Bond goes off to assassinate Scaramanga, does the job and gets the girl. It's a bit of an emotional anti-climax after the dramatic events of the prior couple of books. But in Colonel Sun Bond gets a chance at redemption. He must save M, the man he tried to murder about a year earlier. By saving M Bond proves not only that he is still an agent to be reckoned with (which he already did by killing Scaramanga in the last book), but also that he and M have a special relationship. A relationship which even survived Bond's attempted murder. Saving M can be seen as some sort of act of penance since it is the direct opposite of trying to murder him. By saving M Bond's honour is restored and one of the last remaining plot threads from the Blofeld trilogy - the amnesia/brainwashing/assassination attempt - is wrapped up in a satisfying way.  

 

It wouldn't however have been as satisfying if the events of Colonel Sun took place in 1983 or 1995. By breaking of from Fleming's timeline Gardner and Benson couldn't continue with the character arcs Fleming started. Bond was back in the status quo again and therefore less interesting. Gardner tried giving him somewhat of an arc that dealt with his aging in his later books - in SeaFire Bond is more sentimental and tired of the intelligence business and therefore proposes to his girlfriend Flicka, But for me, it's too little too late. Benson tried to continue with one of Fleming's unresolved threads - Bond's and Kissy's son (Blast from the Past). But placing the story in the modern times undermined the emotional punch of the story. Bond's son has obviously aged and grown up to be about 20 years old, but Bond himself hasn't aged. And if Bond's son is 20 in 1996, that means that YOLT must have taken place in the late 70s. Well, I've never read that version of the YOLT-story, therefore I care less about Benson's sequel to a story I really haven't read.

 

 

This is why I think the continuation novels benefit from staying true to the Fleming timeline and allowing Bond to age. It just makes him a more interesting character. The same goes for the films that actually acknowledge past events. I love it when Tracy is mentioned in the films TSWLM and FYEO, because it gives him a history and makes Bond more of a rounded character. The focus on continuity and character arcs is also what has made the Craig era so successful. 



#13 seawolfnyy

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Posted 19 September 2015 - 01:57 PM

Tracy's also mentioned in LTK and indirectly so in GE and TWINE.

 

I think TMWTGG can be forgiven for it's plot shortcomings since Fleming died during it's production. Much of the detail and plot problems would have been addressed in subsequent rewrites. As it stands, it's essentially a published first draft. So I think that book can be forgiven.

 

I agree with the assertion that the Gardner and Benson novels seem detached from Fleming's Bond. I can't see Bond losing his wife, bungling missions, suffering amnesia, attempting to assassinate his boss and then just returning to business as usual. Fleming stated that, after submitting TMWTGG's manuscript, that it was to be the final entry. Had he not died, he may have given Bond a proper send-off. Kingsley Amis did an admirable job of continuing Fleming's mold as did Faulks, though I admit I didn't really like the Scarlett Papava story.



#14 DavidJones

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Posted 19 September 2015 - 04:47 PM

If some people don't like the idea of more Bond books, don't read them. I like them and just consider it a floating timeline like the films.



#15 AMC Hornet

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Posted 19 September 2015 - 11:03 PM

If some people don't like the idea of more Bond books, don't read them. I like them and just consider it a floating timeline like the films.

Wot he said. B)



#16 Matt_13

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Posted 19 September 2015 - 11:52 PM

 

If it's Sherlock Holmes and Conan Doyle wrote it, it's canon.  If it's James Bond and Ian Fleming wrote it, it's canon.

Everything else is apocryphal.  

 

This. After Fleming(RIP) departed from this world, everything piece of fiction written post-that about Bond is basically fan fiction. Some of it may be very entertaining fan fiction but it's still fan fiction nonetheless.

 

 

My thoughts exactly. I enjoy them, but they are fan fiction.



#17 AMC Hornet

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Posted 20 September 2015 - 12:38 AM

Benson more than Gardner.



#18 Marcin

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Posted 20 September 2015 - 09:43 AM

I personally have no problem with the idea of "floating timeline".
Let's face it. Had Fleming lived, say 20 or 30 years longer and still writing Bond novels, he would have been facing the same problem as Gardner. Most likely.
After all wasn't it mentioned in Moonraker that Bond was eight years short of mandatory retirement age in 00 section? And that his skills are needed two, maybe three times a year? Fleming himself wouldn't be able to continue his own timeline and keep Bond ageing at the same time.

Edited by Marcin, 20 September 2015 - 11:14 AM.


#19 Karloff

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Posted 20 September 2015 - 02:43 PM

 

If some people don't like the idea of more Bond books, don't read them. I like them and just consider it a floating timeline like the films.

Wot he said. B)

 

 

Well, for my part I actually enjoy both Gardner och Benson. The fact that they have some issues, doesn't mean that there aren't things to enjoy about the books. Icebreaker, Nobody Lives Forever and High Time to Kill (and many others) are still good Bond novels. Do I think that they would have benefited from being set in the 60s? Yes, but that doesn't mean I don't enjoy them as they are.

And as I've stated before - if the timeline/age thing doesn't bother you that's great. I totally get that. As I've said before I don't really mind the floating timeline when it comes to the films. Now, why is it an issue for me when it comes to the books and not to the films? I don't know. Maybe because there is more of a though process that goes into reading a book? Dunno. You spend more time with a book than with a 2 hour film and you have more time reflecting on what you've read in-between "reading sessions". Therefore I think I have an easier time accepting plot holes or "suspending my disbelief" when watching a film then when reading a book. But if it doesn't bother you it doesn't and that's just fine. 


Edited by Karloff, 20 September 2015 - 04:29 PM.


#20 tdalton

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Posted 20 September 2015 - 02:53 PM

The continuation novels are noncanonical.  Fleming didn't write them, which pretty much closes the case on whether or not they're canonical. 



#21 Walecs

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Posted 20 September 2015 - 09:20 PM

 

BTW are you sure Gardner mentions WWII? His Bond is still an ex-navy guy, but does he explicitly state that Bond was involved in the war?

 

 

For Special Services, Chapter 7 (page 52 in my edition; second page in the chapter).

 

'I was an officer in the Second World War'

 

Let's assume Gardner's Bond is 40 and is lying. Can Bond seriously pretend to be at least 20 years older? Doubt so.
 



#22 AMC Hornet

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Posted 20 September 2015 - 11:23 PM

This was while Bond was masquerading as Prof Penbrunner, and was mad up to look 20 years older.



#23 GodwulfAZ

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Posted 01 December 2015 - 03:32 AM

Whenever folks begin talking about timelines and continuity, I remember having read about a comic book editor who, when asked during a convention forum about whether something or other had "really happened" to one of the characters, responded, "None of it really happened. It's a comic book."  Yes, of course Fleming didn't write comic books, but the point is that Fleming's 007 and the world he lived in is no more nor less real, no more nor less material or relevant to our own reality, than the 007 in the works of Gardner, Benson, Horowitz, etc., or the universe(s) they inhabit(ed).  James Bond - like Sherlock Holmes, Tarzan, Superman and dozens of other epic and timeless popular culture characters - will continue to be reinvented, reimagined, reincarnated and rebooted, for as long as the very concept of fiction exists.  Put another way - each new generation wants and needs a James Bond, a Sherlock Holmes, and so on...and they will have them.  Yes, of course Fleming is to be honored for having designed and launched the original, and if a fan wants to believe that his stories are in some way special and set apart, that's certainly an opinion that a person is allowed to have.  As for me, I like to think that the best, most original and entertaining James Bond story has yet to be written.  Bond belongs to the ages, but not - as that saying normally indicates - because he has died, but because he refuses to.



#24 billy007

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Posted 01 December 2015 - 05:44 AM

So is J.Pearson's 007 Authorized Biography canonical?

It's a better read than most of the continuation novels.


Edited by billy007, 01 December 2015 - 05:45 AM.


#25 Dustin

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Posted 01 December 2015 - 06:58 AM

You can take it or leave it just as you fancy. In literary terms it's a line of metafiction and originally was intended more as a spoof than readers nowadays realise. As a continuation it's probably one of the best and most satisfying efforts. But strictly speaking it's not so much continuation as 'true story behind' report.

That said I remember having read, at the time Benson took over if memory serves, that then-Glidrose gave their authors free rein to use or ignore whatever they wanted from the works of their predecessors. So the question of canonicity is a moot one when the very job does not require you to stick to anything your colleagues invented for their efforts. 'Canon' is just not a category when dealing with all the stories that have been written about Bond, every reader must decide himself how they fit a continuation into their idea of James Bond's world.

#26 David_M

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Posted 01 December 2015 - 05:51 PM

I agree with Dustin.  The only work that's "canonical" is that which can't be ignored or undone.  In that sense, all of Fleming qualifies:  Bond loved and lost Vesper and Tracy, for example.  Any love interests added by other authors can be accepted or ignored depending on one's preferences, but those two are written in stone.  Where it gets tricky is that "sliding timeline"  (did Bond serve in WW2? In 1954, he must have, in 2015 he couldn't have), but even there, Fleming gives his successors some wiggle room as he doesn't allow Bond to age out of the Double-O section between CR and TMWTGG (though he would've had to have passed the 45-year age limit by then).  

 

I enjoy some of the post-Fleming novels in the same way I enjoy continuation novels about Sherlock Holmes and other characters who've outlived their creators.  Every now and then I buy a "Star Trek: Original Series" novel because I want to "hear the voices" of characters I like and set the clock back to a time when all the actors were young and alive.  But nothing that happens in those books is "canon" and the next book in the queue might very well tell a story that completely negates what I just read.  And that's okay. 

 

Or I guess another way to look at it is, will any post-Fleming book ever "change James Bond's world forever" or "redefine the character"?  No, only one author was allowed to do that.  But post-Fleming books can certainly entertain, and frequently do.

 

The only thing I really dislike is when an author dies and someone else keeps writing under the original author's name (like Tom Clancy or Robert Ludlum).  That's tacky at best and dishonest at worst.  It also cheapens the original author and his works by suggesting the whole enterprise is just a glorified "Mad Libs" exercise anyone with a typewriter could manage.

 

The Pearson "biography" was bizarre in its treatment of Bond as a real person living in a world where novels about his own life and career were in print.  But there again, Fleming opened that door first by referring to his own novels in Bond's YOLT obit.



#27 TheREAL008

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Posted 10 February 2016 - 01:59 AM

 To be honest I wish IFP would have stuck to Deaver's idea and just flesh out the reboot. Having Bond stories jump around from the 50's and 60's ruins the experience for me somewhat. 

Another problem is with exact cannon. Fleming, towards the end became ambiguous about Bond's origins. If Bond was born in 1924 then why did Higson write him as 13 in 1933?  I think Boyd was too arrogant regarding this. He accepted it as absolute fact when in earlier books (FYEO) Bond appears to be 40 in 1960, which could possibly make him 45 by the time TMWTGG is published in 1965

By that messed up reckoning in Moonraker, Bond is 37 in 1955, which would make him born earlier.

To be honest, the cementing element I've found thus far is in LALD where there's mention of a pageant winner of that year 1954, which may set the events of Casino Royale in '53 and not 1951 as people speculate.

See what a mess it turns out to be?

It all a matter of perspective.  ;) 
 

For me personally, I stick with Bond being born in 1920. CR through TMWTGG sees Bond from the ages of 33-45 with the obit from YOLT as a misprint along with Colonel Sun as a proper send off.  

IFP for that matter, they need to find some humble writers and rid themselves of the arrogant ones. Clearly Boyd isn't superior to Fleming as he claimed and Horowitz felt like he was entitled simply because he was a fan and that he was an esteemed writer. Those two have left me cold about picking up another book in the future. Yeah, IFP need to get their house in order.



#28 Dustin

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 08:21 AM

To be honest I wish IFP would have stuck to Deaver's idea and just flesh out the reboot.


There is perhaps more to it than meets the eye there...

The problem with the reboot is that IFP - through Eon, under their license and with their approval now - can rightfully and under full copyright protection publish continuations of Ian Fleming's James Bond 007. Period.

Now for that reboot idea...

You could - if you so intended - make a case that Deaver's novel is actually not about Ian Fleming's James Bond, not for any lack of qualities of the work itself, but simply for the fact that by the very nature of the enterprise Deaver creates something different. And if you open that door just for the fracture of a woman's silky hair - you can bet that an army of lawyers is ready and able to squeeze in that tiny gap and pry it wide open for we-don't-know-what.

The simple 'flexible' timeline of the books up to Benson's last one allowed for the use of the character within its unspecified time, always a bit into the future. The outright reboot changes the game - and that most likely didn't sit well with Eon and IFP when they were made aware of it.

I suppose the reboot died a quiet death under a tower of legal textbooks...

#29 TheREAL008

TheREAL008

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Posted 13 February 2016 - 04:34 PM

That's a shame. It would have been a great opportunity to have a new world open for Bond in literature.