"Young James Bond" author Charlie Higson has revealed the first details about his new series...

Higson Reveals First `Young James Bond` Details
9th July 2004

Ian Fleming Publications announced in April this year that a new series of James Bond books was on the way. Rather than picking up from where Raymond Benson left the traditional literary canon, IFP unveiled Charlie Higson as the latest author - but this time the adventures would be of a 00-13 year-old James Bond.

This week Charlie Higson, famous in the UK for his "Fast Show" television characters, has revealed the first snippets about the `young James Bond` stories.

Above: Charlie Higson


Speaking to The Independent (UK newspaper), Higson said: "I was approached by Kate Jones, who'd been my editor at Hamish Hamilton, and was working with the Fleming estate. She knew I liked James Bond, and there were Bond references in my earlier books. The estate was looking for ways to reawaken interest in Fleming. Penguin had republished nice editions of "Dr. No" and "Casino Royale". Now they wanted someone to write books for nine-to-12s, to show that Bond was a literary character before he was a movie character."

Higson had completed the first of his five-book contract before the news of the series was formally announced. To be published by Puffin (the young readers arm of Penguin) in March 2005, Higson went on to reveal some details about the new lineage.

The 13-year-old Bond is at Eton in the 1930s, and is drawn into an adventure on a remote Scottish island. There's a villain, and a villain's henchman. There's even a love interest. "She's called Wilder Lawless. But it's a fairly chaste relationship. She's older than him, and he's got an older friend who fancies her. There's a lot of confused pre-sexuality. She wrestles him to the ground and pins him down with her thighs, and he likes it but he doesn't know why ... "

To research the book, Higson re-read the complete Bond oeuvre, in search of biographical clues.
"There are only tiny nuggets of information, because Bond is a fantasy figure on to which anyone can project themselves. The books were like a textbook for the dull, grey, Fifties, British chap on how to be a man. It was the early-Playboy time. This is how you order a steak in a restaurant. This is what you should be drinking and wearing. This is how you treat a lady. That's why they were so popular and why they're interesting now, for what they tell us about Fifties aspirations."

Last month Miramax announced they had bought the rights to publish Higson's first two novels in North America, due out in March 2005 and November 2005.

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