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Licence to thrill: Author selected to write James Bond novels

Steve Cole, author of young James Bond novels

Steve Cole, author of young James Bond novels

When best selling children’s author Steve Cole learned that he had been chosen to pen the further adventures of James Bond’s teenage life, he drove around in his car playing the 007 movie theme tune at top volume.

Cole, of Haddenham, was selected by the family of Bond author Ian Fleming, to take over from Charlie Higson who produced the first series of Young Bond novels.

Cole heard the news in the spring but had to keep it top secret until now.

“It was part of the test to keep it secret,” he said.

“I was ecstatic and blasted the James Bond theme in my car. It is a high profile assignment and I consider it a privilege.”

Cole, who has sold over three million copies of children’s books like Astrosaurs, Cows In Action and original Doctor Who novels, was approached and invited to show what he would do with the character.

“Part of getting the job was to work out a pitch for a story arch to cover four books,” he said.

“Fleming did give clues to Bond’s early life.

“The main source is at the back of You Only Live Twice, there is a fictional obituary.

“It reveals that Bond was educated at Eton and expelled after a fling with a maid and then goes on to Fettes in Scotland.”

Fleming’s novels also reveal that Bond’s parents died when he was just 11 years old, and he was used to international travel.

In Cole’s novels Bond will be aged 14 and 15.

He said: “These are the books that show how the adult Bond was formed.

“He has adventures and brushes with the Secret Service, and an uncle who is a spy.

“In the 30s travel was different and more exotic and there is rich dramatic potential in the events of those times.”

The first book, published by Random House Children’s Publishers, will be out in autumn next year and is aimed at the 11+ age group.

 

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