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Bennett Winch SC Holdall

Solo: the new James Bond novel by William Boyd

15 April, 2013

William Boyd announced today that the title of his forthcoming James Bond novel will be Solo.

solo james bondDetails of the story have not been announced but publishers have revealed it features the 45-year-old agent travelling across Africa and America. Making his announcement at the opening day of the London Book Fair, Boyd said: "In my novel, 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."

The Booker-nominated author of A Good Man in Africa and Restless was commissioned by the Ian Fleming estate to write a new Bond book in April 2012.

Boyd, who grew up in west Africa and has featured African countries in several novels, added that the continent would play a key part in Bond's three-continent escapade. "It's what happens to Bond in Africa that generates his urge to 'go solo' and take matters into his own hands in the USA."

On his choice of the "Bondian" title, Boyd said: "Sometimes less is more. For me as a novelist the simple beauty of Solo as the title of the next James Bond novel is that this short four-letter word is particularly and strikingly apt for the novel I have written.

"Titles are very important to me and as soon as I wrote down Solo on a sheet of paper I saw its potential. Not only did it fit the theme of the novel perfectly, it's also a great punchy word, instantly and internationally comprehensible, graphically alluring and, as an extra bonus, it's strangely Bondian in the sense that we might be subliminally aware of the '00' of '007' lurking just behind those juxtaposed O's of SOLO …"

Solo will be published on 26 September in the UK by Fleming's original publisher, Jonathan Cape, and by HarperCollins in the USA and Canada. The book will be available in hardback, ebook and audio editions.

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