Double Oh!

Reading & Writing, The Arts

Outrage! The new James Bond is American! Jeffery Deaver is set to take on the 007 books. Best known for the quadriplegic detective Lincoln Rhyme, the star of books including The Bone Collector and The Stone Monkey, Deaver has been commissioned to write a new Bond novel by Fleming’s estate. He’s following Sebastian Faulk’s period romp ‘Devil May Care’, but will set this one in the here and now. The press may be outraged but I think it’s a good idea. US crime writers are particularly well-suited to write spy thrillers, and Deaver will hopefully bring a freshness to the series that it is now certainly lacking on film.

But it’s an interesting idea now that when you, the author, dies, your characters (if they’re popular) don’t die with you. We’ve had the further exploits of Alice, Pooh, Holmes, Bulldog Drummond, Vidocq, Raffles, Captain Nemo and many others, as well as extensions of the original books (sorry, ‘brands’) and even ridiculous crossovers like the truly awful ‘Pride & Prejudice & Zombies’ books. Now there’s a move into real-life characters with ‘Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter’ and ‘Queen Victoria, Demon Hunter’. There’s a set of thrillers starring Oscar Wilde, and another starring Josephine Tey as a detective. Clearly publishers feel that readers trust known brands; perhaps they’re considered to be a less risky purchase.

6 comments on “Double Oh!”

  1. Mary says:

    It’s an inventive idea, but there are writers, such as yourself, that are too individual to mimic, thank goodness. You’d be a hard act to follow.

  2. Alan Morgan says:

    Bryant & May, Witchfinder’s in General. Elderly detectives Bryant (Sean Bean) & May (Sean Bean) hunt the cute covens of transatlantic wiccan vampires seeping into London. Armed with the silver chased pistols of Dr. Syn, May kicks arse for the Lord in the company of quirky occultist Bryant. There are explosions.

    From the Producers of Constantine.

  3. Helen Martin says:

    But are there Templars?
    We were discussing Mr. Bond the other night (or is he Commander Bond?) and he was seriously ridiculed for his preference for weak drinks. “If you shake the ice it will melt more easily and weaken the drink.” To say nothing of bruising the gin. Why would this be one of the most important quirks of this character?
    I don’t usually care for add-ons to series. A sympathetic someone to complete the last work in progress after a death but nothing more. Sherlock Holmes has proven particularly susceptible to that and I’ve only read one or two that were anything more than a trading on another author’s creation, but I will say that Laurie King’s Holmes series (beekeeping and married!) is remarkable. She has created a much more believable Holmes than Conan Doyle did and I really like Russell, Holmes’ wife. I’m reading the latest one, which is the 2nd of a two parter, and am wondering if we’re getting close to the end. No one will be able to continue her characters.

  4. Steve says:

    Memorable characters are not oft interred with the bones of their creators, and it seems to have been that way for a very long time. Dracula, anyone? Speaking of whom, the worst reincarnation of the Count that I’ve ever seen (would have been better off poking my eye out with a stick rather than reading it)was actually written or co-written by one of Stoker’s great-great-grand-nephews or some such -Oliver-Wendell-Mycroft-Briggs Stoker or something like that. Yetch.
    As for B&M? No doubt someone would want to attempt keeping them alive if Chris suddenly left the planet…..but I can’t see that attempt being successful. Let’s hope it never becomes an issue!

  5. James says:

    The other side of the coin is Colin Dexter stipulating in his will that there should be no future productions of Inspector Morse, or recasting of the character. Now, Morse is his character and he can do what he likes with him, but it does seem a little bit limiting to rule out say a really good big screen version of “The Dead of Jerico” or whatever,in twenty years time starring a new actor every bit as good as John Thaw.

    There’s obviously a balence to strike, as I shall reflect when I sit down to watch “Bryant and Cracker” in a few decades time 🙂

  6. Helen Martin says:

    Obviously Colin Dexter felt that John Thaw was his image of Morse and doesn’t want it reinterpreted. How often do the film people get it right in the author’s eyes? Funny how Miss Marple and H. Poirot were re done and re done even though Agatha Christie was very unhappy with the whole thing. She banned further productions at one point…so what changed?

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