If Anthony Horowitz’s byline weren’t on the cover, readers could bring themselves to believe that the new James Bond thriller actually came from the late Ian Fleming’s typewriter.
Trigger Mortis fits seamlessly among the original Cold War-era gems. Set in 1957, the story takes place two weeks after 007’s unforgettable adventure involving super-villain Auric Goldfinger, super-vixen Pussy Galore and all the gold in Fort Knox.
In this mission, the English spy drives a hot Maserati 250F in a Grand Prix race to prevent a racetrack assassination. Then he uncovers a SMERSH scheme to sabotage an American space-race rocket test and teams up with a beautiful American agent (Jeopardy Lane!) to thwart a New York City bombing.
Along the way, the bad guy (a Korean millionaire/maniac named Sin Jai-Seong — aka Jason Sin) has our hero sealed in a coffin and buried alive. Naturally, Bond will dig his way to freedom.
Some novels commissioned by the Fleming estate haven’t been faithful to the spirit of the originals (Jeffery Deaver’s Carte Blanche was the worst culprit), but Trigger Mortis is bona fide Bond in every way.
As a matter of fact, Fleming is a co-author in more than a spiritual sense. Horowitz, a bestselling English novelist (Moriarty) and TV screenwriter (Foyle’s War), went through Fleming’s unpublished work and found inspiration from an outline for a Grand Prix racing tale called “Murder on Wheels.”
“My aim was to make this the most authentic James Bond novel anyone could have written,” Horowitz says in press materials. “It was a fantastic bonus having some original, unseen material from the master to launch my story.”
— David Martindale
by Anthony Horowitz