First, let me say, I love James Bond but it was always the movies for me. I have watched them over and over again over the years and never tire of them. However, I had never read or listened to the books by Fleming. When the torch was passed to Jeffery Deaver I was over the moon when the audio book arrived of CARTE BLANCHE 007 courtesy of my friends at Simon Audio.
When I popped in the first disc because I could not wait, I was dismayed. Bond had certainly been reborn, he was a younger Bond and the tone was decidedly different then the light banter, toys and women of previous Bond movies that I was expecting. Bond was with a new organization and I while I kept waiting for the lightness it never came, this was a dark Bond. However, by disc two I was engaged by the plot and though a departure from my Bond it had my complete attention.
Toby Stephens was an excellent narrator for Bond. The irony that Stephens had played Gustave Graves, a villain, in DIE ANOTHER DAY was a nice touch. Although, I was selfishly wishing Stephens was just Bond and not the other characters but I soon got over that.
Fast forward to this summer and the Shaken Not Stirred Bond extravaganza organized by Literate Housewife [@LitHousewife]. The plan was to listen to the audiobook prior to watching the movie at a scheduled time. The first month I could join in I was not able to listen before the movie so I just enjoyed the movie. The next month I did listen to part of MOONRAKER prior to the scheduled movie viewing and now I sensed something was amiss. This was after all Ian Fleming’s, Bond and yet the two were so divergent.
Now I knew that Jeffery Deaver had accepted the torch with honor and continued on with the Bond tradition in writing the next Bond adventure. If you have read Ian Fleming’s Bond you will definitely want to read or listen to Deaver’s CARTE BLANCHE 007. If you have only watched the movies I encourage you to circle back cause there is room for both Bond in your world and I plan to continue to enjoy both of them.