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Zero Minus Ten; Reviews & Ratings

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Poll: How do you rate 'Zero Minus Ten'?

How do you rate 'Zero Minus Ten'?

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#1 Qwerty


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Posted 15 December 2008 - 12:26 AM

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This thread is intended for reviews and ratings of Zero Minus Ten by members of the The Blades Library Book Club here. Be sure to add your review if you do vote in the poll!

The Blades Library Book Club will be reading Zero Minus Ten from: 15 December 2008 - 15 February 2009

#2 TheREAL008


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Posted 15 December 2008 - 05:12 PM

Zero Minus Ten is possibly one of the top ten best Bond novels of all time. It was mid to late 1998 when I even heard about a new Bond continuation novel after Gardener's retirement from the franchise. To me ZMT seems a stronger novel than The Facts of Death, but regardless Benson's first novel is a good starting point to bring Bond into the latter half of the nineties and into the new millennium.

#3 dogmanstar



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Posted 15 December 2008 - 05:58 PM

Very strong debut showing for Benson. He returns Bond to some of the more Fleming habits and storylines. The story deals with a plot to disrupt the Honk Kong turnover to the Chinese, so today the story seems a little dated. The chase scene on foot with the suspected assassin is magnificient. There is a lot of tension in this book. Benson writes somewhat like Fleming but does not try to imitate him too closely.

If there's anything I found strange, it was how much of a holdover Benson does with the films. Some of Q's lines and gadgets come right from the movies and nothing which Fleming ever invented. Sometimes it does feel like you are reading the cinematic adventures of James Bond instead of a continuation novel.

That said, there's a lot of local color, an interesting plot/bad guy, some nice women along the way. I gave it a four.

#4 Jim


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Posted 15 December 2008 - 06:09 PM


I stand by the above, even if various program updates have mashed the punctuation up real bad, like.

#5 quantumofsolace


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Posted 15 December 2008 - 11:37 PM

It does read like a film treatment more than a novel. Many of the characters behave like they are from a late Moore or Brosnan film. But it's a very enjoyable book. The plot means the book has dated but I think that now makes it more interesting and so is a plus. The location detail is very good. Oriental Bond works.

#6 Greene Planet

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Posted 09 January 2009 - 11:57 PM

Zero Minus Ten.

Benson's debut 007 novel was true to Fleming's man, while applying modern times to it. But, the fact is, the book wasn't up to the literary 007 standards for me. It was too much like a film, I also didn't understand the plot either. In fact I personally think I shouldn't of spent som much time trying to read this. Overall I was very diapointed, the novel first came to me just a few weeks ago when I decided to read it. Before I read it, I had enjoyed my copy of his first Splinter Cell novel, while thinking I had enjoyed it, I wanted to read his 007 debut.OverallI give it a 3/10. It was quite diapointing coming for Benson.

Edited by Greene Planet, 10 January 2009 - 05:41 AM.

#7 Jaws0178


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Posted 11 January 2009 - 06:03 AM

I could see Zero Minus Ten as a film. Benson does a rather good job with making it seem kind of like a Brosnan movie. The Hong Kong parts I could almost see. The torture chapter had me cringing, and the subsequent catching of the general with his "pants down" made me laugh out loud. Actually, my fiancee thought I was nuts until I explained it to her. Then she rolled her eyes (Not a spy fan). The final section where the changeover took place was very moving for me, and I'm not even British. :( Other than that, my only problem with the book was the chase through the bank, it was too long. Mind you, thats just a minor nitpick. Take it for what its worth. Also, I don't know if anyone else noticed this, but one of the officers who was shot was named Gary Mitchell. Well, Gary Mitchell was also a character from the original Star Trek series. He was James Kirk's first choice for first officer according to a book written by Vonda N McIntyre. He was also in the episode entitled Where no man has gone before. Thought that was a nice little reference. I gave it 4 out of 5




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Posted 16 January 2009 - 09:03 PM

This book takes us back to Fleming's 007 but Benson made thos character his own. Wow! James Bond is BACK! Sunni Pei is what I think a bargirl turned hero. And the villian is somewhat freaky because he dies than lives in Australia. T.Y. Woo is the most wierd character I've ever known, uh huh. This book is what I could amagine as a movie somehow. This book is in my top 10 Bond books because, Bond is Bond not a superhero, not a muscleman, Bond is Bond! The locations are wonderful because they show a lot about 1 place.



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Posted 01 April 2009 - 03:49 PM

I have just finished reading Zero Minus Ten, and overall I enjoyed it. For Raymond Benson's first Bond book it was pretty dam good. I found it much easier to get on with than John Gardner’s License Renewed. The book had a lovely flow to it.

Having Bond on a training exercise at Goldeneye was brilliant. I could really picture him there. Also mentioning the passing of Fleming (or at least hinting at it) was a very nice touch. What a great beginning. I thought having Bond in Hong Kong and working for Triads would never work. How wrong could I have been.

I was a little surprised near the beginning that Bond told Moneypenny he was not English. Half Swiss and Half Scottish in fact. I guess I was surprised, as I always thought Literary Bond was an Englishman.

I look forward to the next one, and I hear that Benson’s Bond novels only get better! Bring on the rest I cant wait! It’s a big thumbs up from me! What wonderful pace this book had.

Edited by DAN LIGHTER, 03 April 2009 - 07:36 AM.