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Literature / Cold

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The sixteenth and last James Bond novel (the Novelization of the film GoldenEye being the fifteenth) by John Gardner, published in 1996.

The book is divided into two parts, first being an Interquel set in 1990, where Bond is sent to investigate the events behind the destruction of a plane from England which exploded when it reached its destination at the Dulles airport in Washington. There, he is led after the criminal Tempesta family and the organization known as COLD.

The second part, set right after the events of SeaFire, has Bond receiving a message from a lover from the past, which sends him back on the trail of the elusive COLD.


This novel contains examples of:

  • Accidental Murder: Kauffburger knows from experience that "guns is dangerous". After all, he did accidentally shoot his brother with one as a kid.
  • Antagonist Title: After the Nebulous Evil Organisation COLD. Also an Initialism Title.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Brutus Clay lost both his legs in the chase after Bond, and has to rely on prosthetics to move.
  • Big Bad: The so-called Ice King, or rather General Brutus Clay.
  • Blackmail: COLD had the BD 299 bombed because one of the passengers, a former member of British government's anti-terrorist section, had accumulated a sizeable amount of material about their operations and was going to extort money from them.
  • Call-Forward: The new M is mentioned to be a woman — Barbara Mawdsley, properly introduced in the previous (but next chronologically) book, Goldeneye.
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  • Cartwright Curse: Lampshaded by Bond when Beatrice brings up Flicka, and he tells her about her current condition.
    Bond: I seem to bring bad luck to women.
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Converse with the Unconscious: Before going after COLD again, Bond regularly visits the currently comatose Fredericka von Grüsse, and talks to her.
  • Dumb Muscle: Kauffburger, who even has the nickname "The Idiot" thanks to his strength-to-intelligence ratio.
  • Evil Plan: For COLD, it's taking over the United States.
  • Fun with Acronyms: COLD is an official acronym for the organization that calls themselves Children of the Last Days.
  • Interquel: The first half of the book ("Cold Front") happens before Never Send Flowers and SeaFire, the second half ("Cold Conspiracy") after those and before the novelization of Goldeneye.
  • The Mafia: Bond learns from the FBI that the Tempesta family is not so clean-cut as Sukie had led him to believe; they are an old Mafia family who are currently taking over John Gotti's former turf in New York. And to learn about COLD, he has to go to meet its leaders face to face.
  • Market-Based Title: The novel was released as Cold Fall in the United States.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Bond learns from Sukie's stepsons that she used to call him "the spy who loved me".
    • Beatrice di Ricci's message to Bond includes the phrase "I want to win. I don't want lose or die", which references the title of the novel where she and Bond met.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: General Brutus Brute Clay. No, Brute is not a nickname.
  • Nightmare Face: When Bond meets Brutus Clay for the second time, he finds out that their initial confrontation left his face like that of a skull with flaps of skin poorly implemented around it.
  • Nothing Personal: Roberto, one of the Tempesta mooks, tells Bond that he actually likes him, and there is nothing personal from his side about Bond being forced into COLD's machinations.
  • Operation: [Blank]:
    • The operation to bring down COLD is named Operation Antifreeze.
    • COLD's big operation to take over United States on Christmas Eve is called Operation Blizzard.
  • Reports of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated: As Bond is briefed on the Dulles incident, he learns that Sukie Tempesta was one of the 400 people who perished in the explosion. But when he goes to Dulles to investigate, he finds her alive and well, only to learn a short while later that she has become a victim of homicide.
  • The Reveal: Sukie faked her death in the exploding car, and has been Evil All Along, being a primary member in both Tempesta family and COLD organization the whole time.
  • Revenge Myopia: Sukie Tempesta is pretty angry at Bond for shooting down Brutus Clay's helicopter which was gunning for him, leading to his many injuries.
  • Room Disservice: Bond is in the middle of a Mexican Standoff with two crooked FBI agents, who have Beatrice on gunpoint. It ceases momentarily when the room service knocks on the door. When opened, clean FBI agents charge into the room and defuse the situation.
  • Straight Edge Evil: COLD is religious criminal group that wants to get rid of the crime and drugs in the society, but it also wants replace current democratic government of the United States with their own fascist one.
  • Unholy Matrimony: The Ice King and Ice Queen of COLD, who plan to force Bond and Beatrice to be part of their wedding ceremony.