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Sunday, 23 March 2008

A Book by its Cover (2)

In the comments section of A Book by its Cover, Gail Renard wrote:

"Oddly enough, I first read Thunderball and a few other James Bonds when I was 10. Do you think he was the Harry Potter of our generation?"

Dammit, yes! Why didn't I think of that? Potter may be children's fiction openly read by adults, while Bond was adult fiction read (often to adult disapproval) by children, but the generational crossover and the enormous cultural wave feel very much the same.

Although, Gail, you're far too young to be speaking of "our generation"...

10 comments:

Gail Renard said...

Bless you, Stephen. The fiver's in the post!

Lucy said...

I never read James Bond as a kid, but I loved Sherlock Holmes by wotsisface. Especially The Speckled Band. And also those books by that bloke, the one who died recently who's not Arthur C. Clarke. The public schoolboy ones. Very un-PC. Can you help me out? Driving me mad what his name is or the title of the books and pretty sure you paid tribute to them here.

Stephen Gallagher said...

Anthony Buckeridge?

Stephen Gallagher said...

Oh, hang on... Buckeridge died in 2004. Maybe you're thinking of George MacDonald Fraser and his Flashman books.

Gail Renard said...

And let me add the novels of Nevil Shute into the mix as well. Anyone read those as a kid? It was wonderful discovering a whole new series of books and knowing you had another ten to look forward to. The endless summer of youth!

Lucy said...

That's the one! Flashman. Thanks!

Stephen Gallagher said...

Deep waters... the description of Honeychile Rider’s bottom as ‘almost as firm and rounded as a boy’s’ prompted Noel Coward to write to Fleming, "I know we are all becoming progressively more broadminded nowadays but really, old chap, what could you have been thinking of?"

0tralala said...

Er, hello. We met at that British Fantasy Pub thing just before Christmas. I have been lurking on your blog ever since.

I was also reading Bond Too Young - and got told off by teachers for Dr No when I was 11. (That was in 1987. Sorry.) Rereading them now, I'm amazed how much of the rude stuff must have just passed me by.

Fleming died in 1964 (1963 is JFK, CS Lewis and Aldous Huxley - all on the same day as well). I think you're dead right about the film Bond being an invention of the 60s, and struggled to say something similar recently.

Stephen Gallagher said...

1963 is JFK, CS Lewis and Aldous Huxley - all on the same day as well

While at the same time Philip Larkin was inventing sex. Or I think it was something like that.

Paul M. Cray said...

>>> While at the same time Philip
>>> Larkin was inventing sex.

Presumably in Hull, but I suppose there isn't that much to do there really.