- Audio CD
- Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks; Unabridged edition (Aug. 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1470891220
- ISBN-13: 978-1470891220
- Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 13.3 x 14.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,391,974 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Man with the Red Tattoo (James Bond Novels) Audio CD – Audiobook, Aug 2013
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More About the Author
The Man With The Red Tatoo is the latest of Raymond Benson's continuation of Fleming's James Bond series. Bond is back in Japan investigating mysterious deaths and elbowing his way into trouble. Like all of Benson's series, and indeed the recent Bond films, it tones down the high-octane sexism and snobbery of the original a little, in the name of making Bond contemporary; it is not just in terms of the actors playing him that Bond is no longer quite the man he once was.
Benson is a more thoughtful writer than Fleming, which leads, on the one hand, to some over-extended clumps of exposition in which he explains the right-wing politics of Japanese organized crime or the life-cycle of genetically-engineered mosquitos, but on the other hand to real conviction in his villains' motivations. Fleming created florid villains who were memorable because mythic; Benson's are credible because he makes us understand them--it's doubtful a Fleming villain would ever have quoted Mishima. Similarly, where the deaths of Fleming's heroines were a routine gesture, the fate of one of the "Bond Girls" here is genuinely upsetting. Where Benson most effectively follows Fleming's lead is in action sequences--Bond tied in the path of a bullet train and Bond dancing his way to safety in a burning lava-field. --Roz Kaveney --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Spectacular chases, gory killings and a spot of sado-masochism . . addicts of the genre will love it. (The Times)
Will have Bond fans cheering. (Publishers Weekly (Doubleshot))
Welcome back, Mr Bond. We've been waiting for you . . . Benson has gone back to Bondian basics in a fast-moving world of bedrooms, firm breasts, betting and bruises. (Independent on Sunday)
Terroism and biological weapons are at the hub at this new Bond novel...The Man with the Red Tattoo has everything yu would expect, such as high-tech gadgets, beautiful women and gripping action (Newbury Weekly News)
This is James Bond as tough and sexy as in his younger days, with Benson's stories reflecting the rejuvenated 007 of the Pierce Brosnan era. (Peterborough Evening Telegraph)
There are all the usual thrills and spills you would expect from a Bond adventure. ... Benson recreates the hustle and bustle of Tokyo superbly with just as much detail given to Japanese customs and traditions. (Nadeem Hanif. Doncaster Free Press) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Firstly, the plots. I agree with an earlier review about Ray's inability to blend fact with the story line. It does read like a "wait, let me unfold the tourist brochure and tell you this...", then a refolding of the brochure to commence with the tale. The plot in general, as with the previous novels, are written as if they're movie scenes lashed together. Each one has a slap-stick chase scene which I find abhorent to the Bond character. In another novel, Bond's inexplicably shooting a villain in the face in an elevator and then running from the police through TV sets is painful. This one has a chase through a Kubuki playhouse simply to add some description of Kubuki. Bond finally finds a key character (the prosititute) in the latter third of the story, in Sapporo, and takes her with him on a dangerous investigation of the villain's HQ. Why didn't Tanaka pick her up and allow Bond to operate on his own? If she was so important to the case, she should have been in Tanaka's custody within an hour.Read more ›
There is one frustrating element of the novel for those who have read Fleming's originals, and that is the timeframe. Benson has copied the movies habit of re-casting Bond in the modern era, whereas Fleming gave dates and contemporary events that put his stories firmly in the fifties and sixties. There's nothing wrong with Benson updating the character, but when he frequently refers to incidents from the Fleming novels- battles with Ernest Blofeld, for instance- he's referring to events from another, much earlier, 1960's timeline, which I find distracting. Perhaps Benson should have been allowed to set the literary character in the same era as Flemings.
That being so, this is a good read. All the familiar elements are there. Bond is cool, and the villains diabolical. There is a lot of action compared with Fleming, which is why I characterise it as being a 'Playstation' Bond. Which is probably what todays readers want.
Benson has also copied some of the techno-thriller habits of Tom Clancy and Dale Brown. The villains plot gets a thorough explanation, as does his political motivation. Benson handles this sort of thing well- which leads me to think he could, funnily enough, write an even better thriller if he wasn't writing a Bond story!
Bond goes back to Japan to follow up on a virus attack and to prepare for a G8 Summit. Can there possibly be a connection, well I hate to give away a very obvious plot connection, but yes of course they are. So Bond fights and shags his way accross Japan until he saves the day again.
I have the concern that we are seeing the end of the Bond novels, they are expensive, issued with no publicity and to be honest, lacking in their content. I'd love to know what the sales figures are like because I do sometimes wonder why I am buying these books and not re-reading the classic Flemming stories.
In summary, worth a read, but only just.
But this doesn't mean RED TATTOO is lacking in character depth. Just the opposite is true. Japan holds dark memories for Bond, and that aspect is not ignored. Whereas John Gardner might have given a passing reference to Bond's legendary ordeal in YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE, Benson uses the "ghosts" of Bond's past as a full-fledged complication. Fans will not be disappointed in how Benson weaves elements of the Fleming masterpiece into this current book. He makes Japan a character in this novel-in many ways, the main character-both ally and nemesis to 007. And, past associations aside, it's refreshing to have a Bond story set in one locale instead of globetrotting from one scenic set piece to the next. This gives Benson a chance to really flesh out the culture in detail. It's Benson's attention to these details and his ability to weave them into the plot in highly entertaining ways that make his books the best of all the post-Fleming adventures. It's where RED TATTOO excels.
Fans of action will not be disappointed as gunfights and fistfights abound in RED TATTOO.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Benson is a journeyman author. His take on Bond is serviceable but never really comes to life. He's no Fleming.Published 17 months ago by mr stephen marsh
If this had been the authors first outing with 007, I doubt that I would had read any more of his 007 novels
Not what you expect
I would highly recommend this 007 novel to all Fleming fans. A worthy successor along with John Gardner. I just wish he would write more novels about Bond San.Published on 15 Mar. 2013 by jasper
The answer is yes. No one will ever replace Ian Fleming but Raymond Benson was a worthy successor. He captures the grittiness of Fleming's 007 but moves the character forward to... Read morePublished on 28 Feb. 2013 by Bob Dickson
I have read EVERY james bond book there is, through the Fleming era, John Gardners stint and now Ray Benson. I would like to thank Benson for bringing back a true sense of Bondism. Read morePublished on 28 July 2003
... The book starts with something we're all afraid of, a chemical attack. Not on a major city or country, but a major family who make a living finding cures for diseases. Read morePublished on 15 Mar. 2003 by Simon Ball