Bond Unknown - 007 vs Cthulhu

For something that promises to be very different, how’s this for a concept?

“Bond Unknown” pits Ian Fleming’s creation, James Bond, against threats from the Mythos of HP Lovecraft in two novelettes, “Mindbreaker” from Edward M. Erdelac, and “Into The Green” from Willie Meikle.

More info in the link:

Interesting idea. How exactly are they getting by the copyright issue? is this going to be Canada exclusive? Reminds me, has anyone read that compilation of Bond short stories, Licence Expired: The Unauthorized James Bond, which was Canada only?

I have read several books by Erdelac and none of them have been exclusive to Canada. I have no idea how they’re getting around the copyright issue, especially since it’s a legitimate publisher, though an indie publisher for sure.

I’ve read Licensed Expired it is worth looking into

Is it easy to get ahold of? I’ve got a trip up north in November and was thinking I could pick up a copy then. Hopefully it is carried in your average Canadian bookstore.

It is. I bought it when it first came out from Chapters/Indigio. Occasionally I still see it on the shelves at a Chapters or Indigo location (in fact, I think it’s on the bargain bookshelves now). So make sure you look around carefully, especially in the bargain section where it may be present without appearing on the store computer system.

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Can I living in the USA order Licence Expired from Amazon.Ca and have it shipped to me? Or can it only be shipped in Canada?

Yes, I did.

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Cool. Wasn’t sure if that was the case or not.

Really? I tried and it gave me a shipping restriction.

Did anyone end up ordering this? I did and I have to say, I loved MINDBREAKER. It really reads like a classic Bond adventure and would make a great movie.

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Somewhat late to this. Restricting a book’s release to one territory is quite easy to do. Most listings are done electronically, and so you choose either all of the world or whichever territories you want to sell into. It’s useful when copyright is a muddled thing.

As for Licence Expired, I’m slightly biased because I wrote one of the stories (A Dirty Business). Some of them are traditional and some are more ambitious or esoteric in their storytelling. I went trad and for the feeling of an Ian Fleming story without actually copying his style. The Living Daylights and Risico were my touchpoints. The breadth of styles in the book means there will likely be some you like and some you don’t.


The reason I thought your story was the best in Licence Expired was that you actually made it feel like a James Bond short story. You didn’t slavishly follow Ian Fleming’s style but it could fit comfortably beside his short stories, which a lot of stories in that book couldn’t. I’d say the same about the stories in the Queen and Country anthology you had out in Canada. No Good Deed was particularly good and gave an unusual angle on a story and a different view of Bond. They all felt like they could sit alongside Ian Fleming’s stories though. The same goes for the novel Firewalker. The chapter about the raid on the mafia family really had the feel of Ian Fleming. The way you took time to give background and detail to the mafia don was really entertaining. It’s a shame these are only available in Canada. I had to get a friend up there to send them to me. I had no idea about these Bond Unknown books. I’ll have to get my buddy in Canada to do his thing again. I think they might not be to my tastes - I favour the more traditional for my Bond - but for completion’s sake I need to get them.

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I have Licence Expired, but didn’t know about these other volumes. Will have to look for them.

Thanks for being so kind. I’m really glad you enjoyed them. As for the influence of Ian Fleming… I’ve been a pro writer since 1985, and a huge chunk of my career (or “job” as I prefer to call it) has involved working with pre-existing characters. I’ve done original novels and scripts but as my career has unfolded, I’ve found myself writing regularly for existing IPs. When I’m doing that - whether it’s OO7, Sherlock Holmes, Richard Hannay, Dennis & Gnasher, The Broons and Oor Wullie, Blake’s 7 or my most usual haunt, Doctor Who - it’s really important to have respect for what’s gone before. Some writers like to take something that exists and completely reimagine it and I do respect that. Battlestar Galactica was a great example of that. Licence Expired has stories which went that route and I respect the writers even when the stories weren’t to my personal tastes. I usually stay close to the source material because that’s what made me admire and enjoy the characters and situations in the first place. I generally find it easier to do a complete reimagining if it’s a property I don’t have a big connection to. I really like Ian Fleming’s Bond novels - I read them in order every 4 or 5 years - so for me it was a no-brainer to stay very close to Fleming’s originals, or at least to try. Anyway, glad you enjoyed the books. Hope you enjoy these Bond Unknown books as well. They don’t sound exactly my cuppa char but as you say… for completion’s sake…