Posted 25 August 2011 - 09:10 AM
Posted 14 October 2011 - 12:17 PM
Posted 27 December 2011 - 05:01 AM
Daniel Silva, who is probably best known for the Gabriel Allon series. I'm a few chapters into A Death In Vienna, and I really like his style. It's very clear, and easy reading. I do have some concerns though, mostly because of his attitude towards certain elements of his stories. Allon is an Israeli spy and assassin, and a lot of characters come across as blaze. It's like they're saying "we're Israeli, so whatever we do is acceptable", even when they're using the same tactics against their enemies as their enemies used against them first. But I don't think it would be an issue, since Bond is British.
Grant Blackwood. I broke character and borrowed an anthology of short stories from the library, and one of the strongest that I've ready so far was by Blackwood. I've found a lot of the stories are a little too ambitiuous for their word-count, but Blackwood had a neat little spy thriller set in the 1950s called Sacrificial Lion where an American spy tricked the Soviets into assassinating their own key strategists. I was a little surprised to find that he co-authored a few books with Clive Cussler; I found a lot of Cussler's later books to be very weak, and I thought little of his co-written works.
David Morrell, who I also found through the thriller anthology. I know he wrote First Blood, but the thing I found most interesting wa the way his short story, The Abelard Sanction, was the resolution of a cliffhanger in a series that he stopped writing over a decade ago following the death of his son. Despite the fact that I have never read any of his books before, I really liked the short story; it was clear and concise, and like Blackwood, he wasn't too ambitious for the word count.
Chris Mooney. Another one taken from the thriller compendium, and another continuation of a novel. Apparently he never intended to revisit one of his characters, but a lot of his fans wanted to know what happened next, and he wrote his entry to see if he could keep writing the character. It wasn't as well-paced as the stories by Morrell or Blackwood, but it was enough to pique my interest and to try and find the original story.
Posted 27 December 2011 - 04:21 PM
If not, then Raymond Benson should be asked back, to continue where he left off--there is no need for him to continue with the Deaver reboot, given that he has proved himself adept at creating his own take on Bond's world. If neither Deaver nor Benson, then an author who is willing to run with the Deaver reboot. Simply picking a previously established best selling author per each new book, while commercially successful, also runs the risk of that author not taking the job seriously. We are batting .500 here, as Deaver was brilliant whereas Faulks delivered the worst Bond book in the entire series. If I remember correctly, he bragged about writing the book in only six weeks. It certainly shows. This was a man who took his paycheck and ran. We as fans deserve so much more than that.
Edited by Bill, 27 December 2011 - 04:22 PM.
Posted 31 December 2011 - 06:03 AM
Posted 31 December 2011 - 06:33 PM
Posted 01 January 2012 - 04:51 AM
Black Hawk Down was horrible.
I found it pretty gripping. The tension he builds is pretty impressive. It's certainly a lot more interesting than, say, The Perfect Storm, which put me to sleep.
Posted 17 January 2012 - 04:05 AM
Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:00 PM
Posted 04 February 2012 - 04:15 PM
Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:31 PM
Posted 16 February 2012 - 06:49 PM
It's just the way these things are marketed today, with people expecting 500-plus pages when they pick one up at the airport or train station. This kind of story, the fast'n easy thriller for the reader, not exactly undemanding but not expecting much in terms of literary value, used to be told in a third of the wordcount back in the day of the Gold Medal books. I can forgive that today these stories are beefed up to fit customer expectations. What I can't forgive is the careless manner it's done in some of Child's books. Scenes that exist simply to deliver a tidbit of information, without inner logic why the character should meet Reacher - in this particular scene - talk to him without context and exit immediately afterwards, that's just sloppy writing or editing, maybe both.
That said I admit Child has a strong sleeve, some of his remarkable villains. Creepy creatures throughout, having more in common with the classic personnel of the horror tale; monsters in their own right without the current fashion to make them young and sexy. With Reacher at the focus of the books the villains' potential often is a little underused. Yet every single one appals more than Gormer and Hydt combined could ever dream of. That's a quality a Bond book could surely use. But overall I'm still not supporting Child for Bond (and doubt he'd do it as he supposedly has turned down the chance twice already)
Posted 19 February 2012 - 01:58 AM
Yeah, I agree with that. I tried reading Nothing To Lose a while ago, but I couldn't finish it. The pacing was really inconsistent, for one, but the thing I remember the most was the way Reacher took down six thugs in a brawl, which felt like Child was trying way too hard to turn Reacher into a badass by having him fight six men at once. It was also the 12th Reacher novel, but I got the feeling that Child was writing to a familiar formula, and that I could predict when and where plot points would come up.
Can't say I'm a fan of the Child idea. His trademark hero is very ubermensch, more Superman than Bond. And his hero's character interior and arc is practically that of a big grey stone, with only very little of the zest and joy of life that keeps Bond from becoming too dreary.
He reminds me a lot of Colin Forbes. I read a lot of Forbes when I was younger, but in retrospect, his work was mostly B-grade cookie-cutter filler. I saw a lot of that in Child's work - a recycled framework, and a feeling of "we've been here before" in his plots.
Child comes home at an average of 180.000 words, but you could skip about half of them and wouldn't miss a single beat of the story. And Child is no "stylist" as such; his sentences aren't art (and shouldn't be). Nobody reads Child for the language or the intellectually stimulating observations.
Posted 22 February 2012 - 07:19 PM
Posted 19 March 2012 - 05:55 PM
If nothing else, we need at least one more novel, something better than Carte Blanche to end the literary Bond legacy!
Posted 19 March 2012 - 07:46 PM
I can't see too many queuing up to take over a new, different James Bond. Jeffrey Deaver's James Bond, surely? The appeal - remember this IFP - is Ian Fleming, and you shorten the list of subsequent writers if they are asked to take on something not recognisably Flemingian.
But surely part of the reason Deaver accepted the offer from IFP was for the honour of rebooting the franchise and remodelling Bond and the Bondverse, setting "the rules" for subsequent writers. Otherwise, Deaver is just the new Raymond Benson, no?
But where is the appeal for a new writer following Deaver's reboot, Deaver's model, Deaver's plan?
Deaver gets the main gig - the creative bit of rebooting Bond - and the rest just have to follow it, Deaver's rules as you say? Hardly sets the creative juices of the authors who come next going, does it?
And no, I'd say Deaver is not the new Raymond Benson. Just the populist American Seb Faulks.
Agreed. Every writer has faced a new project when writing Bond.
Amis was the first to see if it could actually work after Fleming.
Gardner had to bring Bond into the 80s
Benson’s Bond into the 90s
Faulks back to the 60s
And Deaver is bringing Bond into the 10s
And the next one has it all done for them by Deaver? Not much of a challenge for any writer to get there teeth into.
If you've yet to crack the pages of Carte Blanche then DO NOT CONTINUE>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
I think Jeffery Deaver tried a bit too hard with Carte Blanche. He did well in the 1st and 2nd acts; setting up character & plot developments - The villain was just as sinister, with an evil plan just as vile as anything his predecessors could have come up with. I felt there was no need for the "blindsided hoodwink" withig the last few dozen pages. I felt it completely drained away all the tension & suspense out of the pages that preceded it.
If Deaver DOES pen a 2nd OO7 novel. I have hopes he'll do better.
Posted 01 April 2012 - 10:30 PM
Posted 01 April 2012 - 11:36 PM
I loved CB, but the sole gripe i had with the novel is the feeling of a restricted Bond. It was frustrating having to read on how he couldn't do 'this or that', I guess it goes with the quasi realistic setting. But sometimes Bond works better unchained.
Yeah, Bond in space or CGI windsurfing-Bond is the best kind of Bond!!! Preach on, Brother!
Edited by larrythefatcat, 01 April 2012 - 11:38 PM.