James Bond finds a relaunch in Carte Blanche. This is not your father’s James Bond. This version uses spy cell phone apps and made his bones in military intelligence in Afghanistan. Early in Bond’s career, he is working in a special branch of Britain’s national security where he is given carte blanche to get the job done to protect the realm, no matter what he has to do. In this novel, he is trying to stop an incident from happening following a waste magnate and his hired gun, Niall Dunne, who it readily becomes apparent, is the brains of the operation and the adversary that Bond will ultimately have to stop. The story goes from Serbia to England to South Africa with lots of action in between.
I enjoyed the new style of James Bond. The modern update works fairly well. I also found the writing to be competent and professional. What the novel suffers from is a lack of believability. The technology the bad guys use is science fiction and has no basis in reality. Also, the characterization of all of the villains in the story is weak. The twist at the end doesn’t work very well. In the end, this is an entertaining but not really good novel.
Carl Alves – author of Blood Street