News / Arts & Entertainment

James Bond Goes Solo in New Book Penned by William Boyd

Author William Boyd, (File photo).
Author William Boyd, (File photo).
Reuters
The latest James Bond novel is titled "Solo" and will see the world's most famous fictional spy go on an unauthorized mission at the height of the Cold War, the author of the book said on Monday.

The plot of the book focuses on Africa, but spans Europe and the United States, as it reveals a realistic, 45-year-old Bond based on the wealth of biographical detail taken from the original Ian Fleming novels, British author William Boyd said.

"Events conspire to make Bond go off on a self-appointed mission of his own, unannounced and without any authorization. And he's fully prepared to take the consequences of his audacity," Boyd said.

"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," Boyd added, declining to comment further.

"Solo" will be published in Britain on Sept. 26 by Jonathan Cape - Fleming's original publisher - and available from HarperCollins, a subsidiary of News Corp, in the United States and Canada from Oct. 8.

While stressing the lasting influence of Fleming's work, Boyd described "Solo" as one of his books which happens to have Bond as a character.

The screen version of the suave spy remains a box office superstar, with "Skyfall" becoming the first official Bond film to take over $1 billion at the box office following its release last year.

Boyd is set to please fans of the original novels, not least as he already has two spy novels under his name, but also because he researched both Bond and his creator meticulously.

"Bond is not just a superhero. He has flaws, he has weaknesses, he makes mistakes. ... That was Fleming's genius," Boyd said at the London Book Fair.
"I am interested in the man, the human being... I had to invent a villain and various antagonists. I had to come up with two very interesting women for him (Bond) to meet and to have a relationship with. I had to populate that world with creatures of my imagination, not just the ones Fleming had."

Fleming wrote his first Bond novel, "Casino Royale" 60 years ago in 1953 and penned 13 more before he died 11 years later at the age of 56.

But to keep the literary James Bond brand alive, his estate has invited various authors to continue the Bond story. The Bond catalogue is one of the most prized in publishing, with global sales of more than 100 million copies.

Most recently U.S. thriller writer Jeffery Deaver wrote "Carte Blanche" in 2011, and novelist Sebastian Faulks wrote "Devil May Care" to mark Fleming's 100th birthday in 2008.

Boyd has won acclaim for writing page-turners with complex plots often set in unique historical milieus, from World War One-era East Africa to 1936 Los Angeles.

When asked to continue the Bond novel series in 2011, Boyd said he immediately jumped at the opportunity.

"It's tremendous fun, but you have to take it really, really seriously."

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

New in Music Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the latest edition of "Beyond Category" blues singer and guitarist Corey Harris performs with his band and talks about his travels in West Africa tracing the roots of the blues.