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Solo: A James Bond Novel

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Overview

It's 1969, and James Bond—British special agent 007—is summoned to headquarters to receive an unusual assignment. Zanzarim, a troubled West African nation, is being ravaged by a bitter civil war, and M directs Bond to quash the rebels threatening the established regime. Bond's arrival in Africa marks the start of a feverish mission, and piece by piece, he uncovers the real cause of the violence in Zanzarim—a twisting conspiracy which extends further than he ever imagined.

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Solo: A James Bond Novel

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Overview

It's 1969, and James Bond—British special agent 007—is summoned to headquarters to receive an unusual assignment. Zanzarim, a troubled West African nation, is being ravaged by a bitter civil war, and M directs Bond to quash the rebels threatening the established regime. Bond's arrival in Africa marks the start of a feverish mission, and piece by piece, he uncovers the real cause of the violence in Zanzarim—a twisting conspiracy which extends further than he ever imagined.

Moving from rebel battlefields in West Africa to the closed doors of intelligence offices in London and Washington, Solo is at once a gripping thriller, a tensely plotted story full of memorable characters and breathtaking twists, and a masterful study of power and how it's wielded—a brilliant addition to the James Bond canon.

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Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review - Olen Steinhauer
…Boyd has, by the novel's close, injected a weary disgust into his central character as the full ramifications of realpolitik…become clearer and clearer. Yet this never seems a betrayal of the original Bond. He is, after all, a template that can be reshaped to suit the times. More than half a century on, Boyd proves that there are plenty of pages left in 007's passport and many miles still to fly in first class, a willing stewardess and a martini within reach. I doubt his creator could have done it better.
The Observer
“The prose of Boyd is frankly superior to that of Fleming. . . . A bloody good thriller. A triumph.”
The Daily Beast
Solo never fails to keep the reader on the edge of his chair. . . . Boyd is a brilliant storyteller and the interwoven plots and surprises of Solo are often superior to Fleming’s own narrative stunts.”
USA Today
“A light, slick, sinuous adventure. . . . Though Boyd’s iteration of the character owes something to Graham Greene’s moral melancholy, Fleming’s Bond remains recognizable. So does the excellent pacing: Solo feels so quick that it could already be a movie.”
The Washington Post
Solo includes faint echoes of Joseph Conrad, whose stories of adventure, intrigue and espionage are deeply infused with a sense of moral inquiry and consequence. . . . A Bond novel but also a Boyd one, with richer and deeper concerns coursing alongside the Flemingesque flourishes that should keep fans satisfied, as well.”
The Atlantic
“William Boyd understands his man very well. . . . This is Bond done right.”
The Irish Times
“Boyd’s prose is crisp and clean, and the story fairly ricochets through its twists and turns as Bond zips from London to Africa and on to the US. Fans of the original Fleming novels will find much to enjoy.”
GQ
“A compulsively readable thriller, replicating the cocktail of ingredients that got Fleming’s readers hooked and yet to let the cracks in the fantasy figure show through. A thoroughly rewarding, entertaining and ultimately thought provoking fix.”
Robert McCrum
“Boyd has immersed himself in the character, the author and his oeuvre and come up with an adventure that’s triumphantly the equal of the great Bond adventures. . . . A brilliant imitation that’s occasionally superior to the prototype.”
The Daily Mail
“Boyd brings back the real Bond, triumphantly. . . . A formidable literary achievement. . . . It succeeds wonderfully.”
The Financial Times
“A perfectly judged narrative tempo . . . . The action is expertly plotted. . . . Solo’s true literary craft lies in the subtlety of its correspondences and also the suspenseful quality that keeps us on our toes until the closing pages. Mission accomplished.”
The Sunday Times
“Breathtaking. . . . Boyd manages to enrich and refresh a character we thought we knew too well. . . . A terrific twisting thriller. . . . A tremendous Bond story.”
GQ
“A compulsively readable thriller, replicating the cocktail of ingredients that got Fleming’s readers hooked and yet to let the cracks in the fantasy figure show through. A thoroughly rewarding, entertaining and ultimately thought provoking fix.”
Olen Steinhauer
“More than half a century on, Boyd proves that there are plenty of pages left in 007’s passport. I doubt his creator could have done it better.”
Valerie Plame
“An exhilarating tightrope of a tale that’s also just retro enough to conjure the original books. . . . Boyd adroitly captures the postcolonial atmosphere of West Africa with a Graham Greene-like eye for detail. . . . Boyd has rendered his Bond perfectly.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062223128
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/8/2013
  • Series: James Bond Series
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 354,917
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

William Boyd is the author of A Good Man in Africa, winner of the Whitbread Award and the Somerset Maugham Award; An Ice-Cream War, winner of the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize and short-listed for the Booker Prize; Brazzaville Beach, winner of the James Tait Black Memorial Prize; Restless, winner of the Costa Novel of the Year; and Ordinary Thunderstorms, among other books. He lives in London.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 16 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(7)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(3)

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Sort by: Showing all of 16 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2013

    Great to finally have a new Ian Flemming Bond book written by BO

    Great to finally have a new Ian Flemming Bond book written by BOYD who has successfully captured the spirit of old school Bond.  Please, WB, write more!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2013

    Good read

    I grew up with Ian Fleming and SOLO is as close to Flemings style as any in decades, Deaver's 007 book was very good too, if you loved Ian Fleming you will love SOLO!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 19, 2013

    Entertaining read. After a long time I never read anything else

    Entertaining read. After a long time I never read anything else in-between.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 3, 2013

    Not one of the better James Bond novels, would not recommend it.

    Not one of the better James Bond novels, would not recommend it. I'm a HUGE James Bond fan so when I found out the release date for "Solo" I pre-ordered it. Unfortunately I didn't care for the novel that much. It's not a great story and, to me, it wasn't one of the better Bond novels. I also didn't like the fact that Boyd sort of left the reader hanging by not having Bond completely eliminate, either by killing or having arrested, all of his adversaries. I thought that Jeffrey Deaver's " Carte Blanche" and Sebastian Faulks' "Devil May Care", which were the previous two Bond novels, were much better than this one. So, even though I'm, as I said, a very BIG James Bond fan, I would not recommend "Solo". If William Boyd writes another Bond novel, maybe his next one will be better.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 3, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Splendid Storytelling! You know the character; Bond, James Bond

    Splendid Storytelling! You know the character; Bond, James Bond. And he lives up to all the charisma, thrill seeking, womanizing splendor in William Boyd's "Solo".
    After a mission to Africa where James winds up getting shot, he seeks retribution and decides to go off the grid, completely Solo. Beautiful scenery, gorgeous woman, and non stop action from the most suave and debonair spy ever! A must read for Bond fans.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2014

    Zach

    Theres a fight at dup third to last res

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 27, 2013

    Channeling Fleming

    Of all the pseudo-Fleming follow on novels, this one truly hits the mark. If I hadn't seen the author's name, I would have believed this came from a lost Fleming manuscript. Encore, Mr. Boyd!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2013

    This books was a major disappoint for me. having read all of the

    This books was a major disappoint for me. having read all of the previous Bond books, I eagerly looked forward for this books release. I don't feel as though Boyd has captured the spirit or style of Fleming's Bond. The plot of the first half of the book was muddled and not the kind of assignment Bond would have been out on. Boyd writes well but this Bond adventure does not measure up to those by previous authors.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 24, 2013

    This book was a major disappointment I bought the book on the re

    This book was a major disappointment I bought the book on the recommendation of Bill O'Rielly. The book doesn't compare to the
    Ian Fleming novels either in character or story line. I would not waste the money to recommend it to .anyone.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2013

    Really good.

    I liked the part where James anf Felix were reunited.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2014

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 16, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2014

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2014

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