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Literature: Colonel Sun

The 15th James Bond novel from 1968, and the first one released after Ian Fleming's death. It was written by Kingsley Amis, under the pseudonym Robert Markham.

When M is kidnapped from his own house, James Bond is tasked to retrieve him. This takes him to Greece, where he is joined with the local beautiful GRU agent Ariadne Alexandrou. Eventually, he comes face to face with the master torturer of China's Liberation Army, Colonel Sun-Tang Liang, who has plans, painful plans, for both him and M.

The book is unfortunately out-of-print, at least physically, however recently an E-Book Edition was published and an audio-book adaptation has been solicited.

This novel has the examples of:

  • Alliterative Name: Ariadne Alexandrou.
  • Antagonist Title
  • Comic Book Adaptation: As with other Bond books, Colonel Sun was made into a comic strip. One notable difference is that it made Sun a member of SPECTRE.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Bond's past adventures involving Scaramanga and a trip to Japan are briefly mentioned.
    • As Sun lectures about genital torture, he notes that Bond is quite familiar with it. This could be a reference to Casino Royale.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Sun is going to torture Bond up to point of ultimate despair, then kill him.
  • Dirty Communists: Colonel Sun himself is a part of the Chinese branch of this trope. An interesting subversion occurs in the fact that Bond allies with the GRU agent Ariadne to stop him.
  • Ear Ache: First part of Bond's torture has Sun rummaging through his ear canal with a metal spike.
  • Evil Plan: Sun, as per orders from China, plans to disrupt a secret meeting hosted by Soviet Union by killing everyone in it, and framing the British for the deed.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Sun keeps up his polite demeanor even as he tortures someone horribly.
  • First Name Basis: Sun prefers to call his subjects by their first names.
  • Groin Attack: Defied. As Sun is about to to start torturing Bond, he notes that genital mutilation is effective, but too ordinary of a choice, and goes for a spike in the ear instead.
  • Interservice Rivalry: One of the many reasons that Alexandra isn't believed when shes tries to warn about the imminent attack on the Soviet meeting is that she's reporting to a KGB representative, who doesn't take her seriously as she's a GRU agent.
  • Leave Him to Me: Litsas agrees to help Bond in his mission, but only if he gets to kill von Richter for his war crimes.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Colonel Sun and von Richter (The Von Trope Family and the German word for "judge").
  • Not Quite Dead: Despite being fatally stabbed by Bond, Sun has enough life in him to kill those who betrayed him, and to have last attempt at Bond's life.
  • Red Right Hand: A powerful gun was discharged near von Richter's right ear during the war, which has left it and the area around it scarred.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: Used on the second cover of the book, seen above.
  • Those Wacky Nazis: von Richter is a former Nazi who took a part in the Greek side of the World War II.
  • Torture Technician: Col. Sun was specially trained to be a torturer, a job he enjoys as he believes that "through cruelty one rises to heights of superhuman awareness".
  • Uncanny Valley: In-universe, Sun's way of speaking English is described to be this, as he doesn't have a natural connection to the language which leads him to use various English dialects randomly.
  • Yellow Peril: Colonel Sun is a fairly typical figure of the Inscrutable Oriental villain type.

Octopussy and The Living DaylightsLiterature of the 1960sJim Button
Octopussy and The Living DaylightsSpy LiteratureAlan Furst
Octopussy and The Living DaylightsLiterature/James Bond    

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