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Posts Tagged ‘james bond’

sentinel-spycatcher-novel

Will Cochrane is a highly trained intelligence officer and is one of the most effective and deadliest agent, codenamed Spartan, to have emerged from the CIA-MI6 Spartan program. As Russia and the United States stands on the brink of war, the CIA intercepts a message from one of their deep cover agents in Russia, that there is a double agent that has betrayed the West and is seeking to create something close to a nuclear apocalypse (don’t you just hate that?). After Will Cochrane is sent in, covertly, to possibly exfil and debrief the agent, he, instead, finds the agent near death (well, actually quite gutted but holding onto life) who offers a final clue: Only the Sentinel can stop him. Hence the title of the book.
Now I must say that this book literally called to me. Yes, I know … bloody freaky. And for months I have ignored it, but I eventually gave in. To besides, there was a bear on the cover and I like bears. Though I probably shouldn’t say that too loud in places such as San Francisco … or a Stephen Colbert set. I have detoured. Aye, I tend to do that … a lot.

Sentinel opens with an edge-of-the-seat, nail-biter infiltration of a Russian submarine base by Cochrane. Nerve-wracking, bladder-clenching and cold sweat-invoking basically describes the first chapter which basically sets you up for what EVERY chapter is going to be like. And what a bloody great ride it is, from cover to cover. With plots so delicately interwoven, aside from Cochrane it has hard to figure out most of the characters and even when you think you do … you find out that you’re dead wrong. The action and intrigue are equally fast, vicious, and many times slams you in the chest like Thor’s hammer. The truth is Will Cochrane makes James Bond (whom I love very much) looks like a preening, cocktail-sipping, tuxedoed Sunday school teacher (sorry James, still love you mate). Possible equals on this side of the Atlantic: Jason Bourne, But that’s another story for another time, mates.

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A few days ago, the world celebrated the 50th anniversary of Ian Fleming’s loveable spy, James Bond and as the new Bond flick, Skyfall, looms in the not-so-distant future it seems appropriate that this book was bound to show up in my posts. Actually, there is a bit of nostalgia involved here. Growing up in Guyana, I remember being treated, at a very young age (not even a tween), to my first Bond movie, The Man With The Golden Gun. Maybe it was the flying car, or the gadgets (actually that became a big deal for me which would account for my technical leanings), or possibly Britt Eklund in a bikini, but whatever it was my father had unwittingly opened a Pandora box, and all I knew was that I couldn’t get enough of the Bond flicks. Now there are a large consensus that would agree that Mr. Connery was the best Bond to date, and while I do appreciate Mr. Connery’s Bond … the Bond that I really admired was Roger Moore. He was smooth, suave, extremely witty and had the moves when it came to the birds … in my humble opinion. Needless to say, his style was well imitated amongst many of my mates during our elementary and secondary school years. As to our success with the ladies, I will most certainly plead the fifth. I have detoured … and possibly bored you to point of committing hara-kiri or sepuku with a rusty butter knife. My apologies.
I came across My Word among the stacks, during my rounds at the library, and most naturally I was intrigued and just simply had to read it.
My Word starts with the humble beginnings of Mr. Moore’s life, growing up in England at a time when some German twit with an inferiority complex decided that it was a good idea to lob bombs at the local English populace. It was very unnerving where in some cases children had to be moved all over England to stay with “surrogate” parents. We are then introduced to his years as a struggling actor and his time in the military. Needless to say his struggling actor years are interspersed with naughty anecdotal bits that left you (well, just me) giggling like a little girl. And that’s what so wonderful about My Word, there is never a dull moment and it is filled with jovial wit and such humour and Mr. Moore, modestly, takes every opportunity to poke fun at himself. And yes, there are enough naughty bits to go around: a bumbling Mae West and her risque show involving well-endowed males; well-endowed extras showing up at Hollywoood parties with their “member” being served on a silver platter, etc. A lot of time is spent giving the reader an exclusive social look, from the actor’s perspective, at what went on and into the filming of the Saint, Bond and Persuaders. Several fascinating titbits popped along the way: Christopher Lee is quite the multi-linguist; in order to prevent any fracas with British censors the director had the “dreadful” task of plying Vaseline to privates of model dancers (for the opening sequence to a specific Bond movie) to keep the pubic hair down (and I am, tragically, in the wrong profession); Richard Kiel (Jaws) is quite the teddy bear. Apparently, Mr. Moore is practical joker, and the sets of Bond, The Saint and Persuaders proved to be delightful testing grounds for his naughtiness. My favourite involves Exlax and a poor unsuspecting crew member. Through his eyes, the reader gets the skinny and perspectives of some not so great behind the scenes moments: a surly Richard Burton, the reason why Sean Connery didn’t show up for the Bond reunion photoshot, and a very, very, very brief unflattering mention of Grace Jones. Though it should be noted that there is not much “gossip” and being the class act, Mr. Moore stipulated throughout his book that if had nothing good to say about someone … he simply didn’t and did in fact maintain that integrity. The man reeks of pure class. Towards the end of the book, Mr. Moore introduces us to the work he’s done (and is doing) with UNICEF, and it is very touching, and extremely moving especially when you read about what he encountered in his UNICEF travels.
My Word is a delightful read, though at some points the language may seem a bit harsh especially for some of those “sensitive” types out there, giving the reader a very intimate view of Mr. Moore. And it is quite a fascinating view. A classy, high-profile actor that is very down to earth, humble and quite the humanitarian (that appreciates a good baked beans on toast). It is indeed a pleasure, to know you Mr. Moore. Or should I say Mr. Bond?

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