James Bond and the characters who’ve been bought back to life by new authors

From Sherlock Holmes to Mr Darcy, plenty of writers are reviving classic characters from literature and taking them on new adventures

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William Boyd’s Bond book hits UK book shops today. The Restless and Any Human Heart author has revived Ian Fleming’s iconic spy for new 60s-set adventure Solo. 

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Of the novel’s plot, Boyd says: “Events conspire to make Bond go off on a self-appointed mission of his own, unannounced and without any authorisation – and he’s fully prepared to take the consequences of his audacity.” Sounds exciting, doesn’t it?

But it’s not just Boyd who is rewritting classic characters. Eveyone’s at it. Here are a few of the other literary stalwartswho’ve been brought back to life by another author’s pen…

James Bond – Devil May Care by Sebastian Faulks

Boyd isn’t the only author to tackle 007’s wild and womanising ways. Writing as Ian Fleming, Birdsong and Charlotte Grey author Faulks penned a sequel to Fleming’s last novel The Man with the Golden Gun. The novel was published on 28 May 2008, on what would have been Fleming’s 100th birthday. 

Jeeves and Wooster – Jeeves and the Wedding Bells by Sebastian Faulks

Not content with rewriting just one classic literary character, Faulks is turning his hand to PG Wodehouse’s Jeeves and Wooster next. After being approached by the late author’s estate Faulks agreed to write a sequel that will be “faithful to the history and personality of Wodehouse’s characters”. Jeeves and The Wedding Bells will be published in November this year. 

Sherlock Holmes – The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz

It takes a brave man to take on the iconic British detective Sherlock Holmes. But that’s just what Anthony Horowitz did in 2011 when he published The House of Silk. Written with the support of the Conan Doyle Estate, The House of Silk tells the story of Sherlock and Watson taking on a case that was “too shocking to be revealed until now”…

Elizabeth Bennet and Mr Darcy – Death Comes to Pemberley by PD James

Jane Austen’s iconic 19th century romances have spawned numerous spin-offs… but PD James’ Death Comes To Pemberley is probably the one you need know about most – not least because an adaptation of the tale is about to air on the BBC. Mixing Mr Darcy with a murder mystery doesn’t immediately sound like a good idea, but this tale, set six years after the end of Pride and Prejudice, was a bestseller. 

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy crew – And Another Thing by Eoin Colfer

Artemis Fowl author Eoin Colfer ventured into Douglas Adams’ galaxy eight years after Adams passed away. Before Colfer penned the sixth instalment in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series, Adam’s widow Jane Belson had said she “could not think of a better person to transport Arthur, Zaphod and Marvin to pastures new”.

Winnie the Pooh – Return to the Hundred Acre Wood by David Benedictus

In 2009, after over eighty years after the last of Milne’s short stories were published, David Benedictus breathed life back into Winnie the Pooh and his pals. Benedictus’ collection of short stories sees a return to Milne’s cute characters, and even the introduction of a new one: feisty, cricket-loving Lottie the Otter. 

Peter Rabbit – The Further Tale of Peter Rabbit by Emma Thompson

Star of stage and screen Emma Thompson proved she has yet another string to her bow when she picked up Beatrix Potter’s rabbit and took him out of Mr McGregor’s vegetable patch. In fact, in her 2012 children’s story, Thompson takes little Peter all the way to Scotland where he meets long-lost relatives. 


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