The new James Bond continuation novel "Devil May
Care" has been unveiled in London on HMS Exeter with
author Sebastian Faulks and cover model Tuuli Shipster...
Bond Is Back In Devil May Care
27th May 2008
Model Tuuli Shipster, who features on the cover
of the new James Bond continuation novel "Devil
May Care", donned a
poppy-red catsuit for her speedboat ride down the Thames in London.
Escorted by Her Majesty's finest from the Royal Navy and over
flown by Lynx helicopters, Tuuli carried a specially commissioned
case containing the first seven copies of Sebastian Faulks' novel
to HMS Exeter, moored near Tower Bridge. The scene, which was
reminiscent of Daniel
Craig's unveiling as the new 007 back in October 2005,
had the gathered press touting it as "the most hyped
literary event of the year".
Above: Tuuli Shipster
accompanies the case down the Thames to HMS Exeter,
Devil May Care author Sebastian Faulks was waiting with
The Royal Navy were happy to loan HMS Exeter to event for the
day, as the fictional James Bond once served upon the very same
ship and held the rank of Commander before joining MI6 and being
designated the number 007. Faulks said it was a "pleasure
to be aboard the ship Bond himself sailed on".
"I can remember Uncle Ian's books being delivered wrapped
in brown paper and string by a postman on a bicycle," said
Lucy Fleming, niece of the late Ian Fleming. "The Royal
Navy has upped the ante a little."
To honour Bond's code name 007, Faulks signed seven copies of
the book in the presence of Fleming's nieces, Lucy Fleming and
Kate Grimond, which were then taken under guard from HMS Exeter
in a Bentley motorcade to Waterstones in Piccadilly ahead of
"We didn't want a thriller writer," said
Lucy Fleming, "We
wanted someone who would read Ian's books and see how he did
it. Sebastian has thought himself into Ian's mind. Ian would
be terribly amused that somebody like Sebastian is keeping his
legacy going. We wanted it to be a celebration of Ian's writing,
so to get somebody of his caliber says a lot about Ian and James
Above: The Bentley motorcade
arrives at Waterstones in Piccadilly
Faulks said he adopted Fleming's writing pace, churning
out 2,000 words a day for six weeks. He says the resulting novel
is about 80 percent Fleming in style. "I found writing this
light-hearted book more thrilling than I had expected. I hope
people will enjoy reading it and that Ian Fleming would consider
it to be in the cavalier spirit of his own novels and therefore
an acceptable addition to the line," Faulks said.
However, he would not be writing another Bond book. "One
tribute, one centenary, one book," he said.
Above: Champagne was
flowing as the seven signed copies were put on display
The book's publishers - Penguin in Britain,
Doubleday in the United States - are keeping its contents under
until it hits stores Wednesday. This much is known: the book
is set in 1967, directly after Fleming's last novel and portrays
the aging secret agent as vulnerable and damaged but with an
undiminished sex drive. The adventure is set to the backdrop
of the Cold War and features Paris, Rome and the Middle East.
There is also the requisite amount of torture and romance. Faulks
said that once the setting was chosen, the subject followed
-- drugs, a subject Fleming largely ignored. Lucy Fleming revealed
Bond's love interest was named Poppy, and the villain, named
Gormah, was "a bit like Blofeld or Dr No - really sinister".
The hardcover print run in Britain and the United States is
reported to be 400,000 copies. Devil May Care is published on
Wednesday 28th May, which is the centenary
of the birth of Ian Fleming, and will go on sale
that day for the first time at Waterstone’s
Piccadilly (opening at the earlier time of
8am). More launch events are also planned at Borders
on Saturday 31st May.