Re: What other author(s) can compare?

Are most modern espionage  books, more realistic  or are there
Still some " improbable  not impossible " adventures out there ?


Re: What other author(s) can compare?

If you’re looking for spy/thriller novels written in the same style as Fleming, then you’re going to have a hard time finding something similar…in my opinion, Fleming had a style that was at odds with what one normally expects of the thriller genre.  Overly digressive, given to poetic flourishes, sometimes to the detriment of the forward momentum.  And yet this is just one of the things that draws so many readers to his work. 

However, if you’re looking for something in the spirit of Fleming’s 007, in particular something published in the ‘60s, then there’s a plethora of stuff!

As mentioned upthread, there’s the Nick Carter: Killmaster series.  This one ran from ’64 to ’90, and a host of ghostwriters served on it, but the installments from the ‘60s (in my opinion) were the best.  Those ones are very much in the 007 mold, plus they’re written in third-person, which I prefer when it comes to thrillers (the series went to first-person in the ‘70s, and stayed that way till the mid ‘80s).  I’ve reviewed a bunch of these Killmaster novels at my blog, Glorious Trash, if you are interested:

https://glorioustrash.blogspot.com/sear … Killmaster

Of those ‘60s ghostwriters who served on the series, I think the one who came closest to matching Fleming in style would be Manning Lee Stokes…here’s a direct link to all the reviews I’ve done of his work, but bear in mind the guy was very prolific, so at the below link you’ll find reviews of more series novels he worked on than just the Nick Carter ones:

http://glorioustrash.blogspot.com/searc … e%20Stokes

But just to focus on one of Stokes’s Killmasters in particular, I’d like to point out Spy Castle, from 1966.  This one you might find interesting, as Nick Carter (sort of) meets a British agent (“James Stockes”) who is quite clearly intended to be Bond himself…!  Here’s my review of it:

http://glorioustrash.blogspot.com/2017/ … er-12.html

I know this is the last place I should admit this, but I actually prefer the Killmaster books to Flemings Bonds, mostly because they’re so crazy, and more in the manner of the Bond films.  In particular I have to call out The Sea Trap, which is not only outrageous in all regards but just one of the best pulp novels I’ve ever had the pleasure to read.  This one was by another hardworking ghostwriter, Jon Messmann.  Here’s my review:

http://glorioustrash.blogspot.com/2014/ … aster.html 

However, ff you’re looking more for something that was the product of one writer and thus one vision (a la Fleming and his original Bond novels), then you might want to check out the Mark Hood series, courtesy Australian author J.E. MacDonnell; they were published in America under the pseudonym James Dark.  Hood is an American, went to Oxford, and who now serves as a secret agent for Intertrust, which is dedicated to maintaining the global balance of nuclear power.  The series ran from ’65 to ’70 and amounted to 14 volumes, though only 12 were published in the US.  I’ve reviewed the first seven volumes at my blog, as well:

http://glorioustrash.blogspot.com/searc … ark%20Hood

I like these ones a lot, but bear in mind they are more pulp than Fleming’s novels – or at least, the series becomes more pulpy as it goes on.  The first couple installments seem to intentionally strive close to the vibe of Fleming’s material. 

Actually, I was wrong above, when I said none of these followers wrote like Fleming – I forgot about Adam Diment, who, despite being hyped as a younger, hipper Fleming, wrote in a style I think was very close to Fleming’s own.  He did four novels between ’67 and ’71 about a young, “hash-loving” spy named Philip McAlpine.  Despite all the hype, the character comes off like a younger, more boring version of James Bond.  Plus the series was written in first-person, which automatically results in a demerit in my book.  In case you have detected a theme – yes, I have reviewed a few of these books as well, though only the first two so far (I read the first volume seven years ago, forgot all about the series, and just remembered I needed to keep reading it!):

https://glorioustrash.blogspot.com/sear … m%20Diment

And because I just can’t stop myself, there was also a 4-volume paperback series, running between 1965 and 1966, about a spy who was a master of disguise named Joaquin Hawks.  It was written by pulp vet Bill S. Ballinger.  These books also strive for the realism and sense of place that Fleming effortlessly displays in his Bond novels.  Here are reviews of the first two volumes, in case you are interested:

https://glorioustrash.blogspot.com/sear … in%20Hawks

I’d say any of these guys are more so “Fleming’s successors” than the Bond continuation authors of the modern day, if for no other reason than that they were publishing in Fleming’s era, and thus were not bound by the PC-revisionist rules which hamstring today’s authors.  But it would appear that some of these modern Bond authors are self-hamstrung; re Anthony Horowitz intentionally trying to undo the “unpleasant” notion that Pussy Galore was only looking for “a realy man” all along, not to mention Horowitz having Bond ridiculed by an openly-gay secret agent (in a novel set in the ‘50s!!)  You won’t find anything like that in any of the above books…and you certainly won’t find it in Fleming, either.