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New Bond novel hits the shelves

books Updated: May 28, 2008 18:58 IST

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James Bond is back -- this time not as a slick spy armed with hi-tech gadgetry, but a solitary guy "unarmed in a smart suit and soft shoes".

A new James Bond novel, Devil May Care, published to mark the birth centenary of 007 creator Ian Fleming, has been launched here today, almost 40 years after the British spy's last adventure.

The book, penned by Sebastian Faulks, is said to set in 1967 against the backdrop of the Cold War and features a love interest named Poppy.

"I had his (Fleming's) man in mind. His Bond was quite different from the film guys. He is not an invulnerable superhero surrounded by whizzo gadgetry. He is very solitary, unarmed guy in a smart suit and soft shoes with one really, ridiculously under-powered weapon.

"That's what makes the books so exciting; you feel he is in desperate trouble all the time," British newspaper The Independent quoted Faulks as saying.

The novel is the 15th instalment in the Bond series and begins in 1967, a year after Fleming's final Bond novel, Octopussy and The Living Daylights was published.

"I copied Ian Fleming's style which was easy to do. I trained as a reporter, as did Fleming. The basic journalistic style with lots of short sentences, no semi-colons and nothing fancy was quite easy.

"What was harder was to capture the slightly snobbish tone, but I hope I under military escort from the printers to Waterstone's store in Piccadilly, London.Bom