Ian Fleming may have died in 1964, but the James Bond stories have continued through the 007 film franchise and new novels for over half a century and counting. Now the latest book will be the first in a trilogy penned by Kim Sherwood, the first woman ever to write a Bond novel. The title was announced today as Double Or Nothing, and sees 007’s whereabouts unknown and possibly presumed dead.
Like the Bond movies, Double Or Nothing is set in the present day and will kick off a Double O series. It’s worth noting these books are not set in the same world as the Daniel Craig movies and so are not a sequel to No Time To Die. Nonetheless, it sounds unmissable for 007 fans.
According to the synopsis: “James Bond is missing… 007 has been captured, perhaps even killed, by a sinister private military company. His whereabouts are unknown. Meet the new generation of spies… Johanna Harwood, 003. Joseph Dryden, 004. Sid Bashir, 009. Together, they represent the very best and brightest of MI6. Skilled, determined and with a licence to kill, they will do anything to protect their country. The fate of the world rests in their hands… Tech billionaire Sir Bertram Paradise claims he can reverse the climate crisis and save the planet. But can he really? The new spies must uncover the truth, because the future of humanity hangs in the balance. Time is running out.”
On being given the chance to write an official Bond book trilogy, Kim said: “James Bond has been one of the enduring loves of my life since I first watched Pierce Brosnan dive from the dam in GoldenEye. I was soon hooked on Ian Fleming’s novels. As a teenager, I chose Fleming when my English teacher asked us to write about an author we admired – I still have the school report. Since then, I’ve dreamt of writing James Bond. It’s rare that dreams come true, and I am grateful to the Fleming family for this incredible opportunity. I feel honoured to be the first novelist to expand the Bond universe through the Double O sector, bringing new life to old favourites, and fresh characters to the canon. I couldn’t be more excited to introduce the word to my Double O agents.”
Double Or Nothing isn’t the only new Bond book out this year though, with Anthony Horowitz having penned his third continuation novel in the world of Fleming’s work after Trigger Mortis and Forever and a Day.
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Horowitz’ new Bond book is called With a Mind to Kill and is set after Fleming’s final 007 novel, The Man with the Golden Gun, which was published in 1965. The story begins with the death of Scaramanga and sees the spy returning from Jamaica to confront an old enemy.
The story’s synopsis reads: “It is M’s funeral. One man is missing from the graveside: the traitor who pulled the trigger and who is now in custody, accused of M’s murder – James Bond. Behind the Iron Curtain, a group of former Smersh agents want to use the British spy in an operation that will change the balance of world power. Bond is smuggled into the lion’s den – but whose orders is he following, and will he obey them when the moment of truth arrives? In a mission where treachery is all around and one false move means death, Bond must grapple with the darkest questions about himself. But not even he knows what has happened to the man he used to be.“
With a Mind to Kill is published on May 26, 2022 and the contemporary set Double or Nothing follows on September 1, 2022.