jeudi 2 juin 2011

A bit late but still ...France got its own Carte Blanche

Each new Ian Fleming Publication James Bond novel is nowaday marketed like a Hollywood blockbuster .
With Press preview , Press launches and multi medias promotion campaign .

Such was of course the case of Carte Blanche , the latest Continuation novel ( although I guess this term isn't really favoured anymore by the IFP people...) penned by American Thrillers auteur Jeffery Deaver .

Promotion started last Summer - with an invitation to discover the new writer in London .
The operation was very hush hush - so secret indeed that no France medias ever reported the event...Despite frantic attempts by yours truly to try to raise the interest around that litterary reboot of Ian Fleming's most famous creation .

Cut to late May a year later , with the Press presentation of the new book set in London Saint Pancras very chic Champagne Bar , reputedly longest bar of Europe ( people will do everything these days to get into the Guiness Book of Records I guess... ) .

Having been kindly invited by the P.R people of Hodder & Stoughton and the Colman Gety agency , I was nonetheless forced to pass the invitation to a friend of mine based in the UK - for practical reason . Impossible to get an affordable EuroStar ticket for London less than a week before proposed departure date . Sigh .
Thanks to the superb Journalistic skills of the aforementionned friend ( none other than Simon Gardner, John Gardner's son ), we were able to present French James Bond fans with some exclusive photo reports of the whole day ( mucho gratias indeed , Mr Gardner Jr ! ) .

The book was due to be in store the very next day in England - May the 26th to be precise . As in most of the World - the English-speaking one , that is .
But the French publisher - Flammarion - has already selected another publication date of its own : a week later , June the 1rst .

At first I thought they had delayed publication because of internal problems ( getting the French translation right - which they almost managed . There are still some minor errors regarding military ranks and stuff ) but the reason was much more simple : Flammarion's own publication calendar was organised in a different time setting way - and they simply couldn't have proposed the French version of Carte Blanche by May the 26 as with the rest of the World .

So once again, people might say the French have done everything to be pointed at again but I can assure you that was merely due to a different publication calendar setting .

Last but not least : Flammarion issued a brand new French promo website to tie-in with the release - to which content I participated in some capacity.

P.S : now that I have read the full novel I can safely state it is indeed a vast improvement upon the last one penned by Sebastian Faulks . Strangely enough I kept having the image of Daniel Craig while reading it . Oh , and don't be afraid by the publicity ' Re-boot ' stint . Re-boot it may be as was then labelled the ' Licence Renewed ' John Gardner first novel in 81 .
In short : Fans won't jump to the roof while reading the litterary 21rst Century adventures of Mr Bond .
Pfewww . Thank God for that !
On another hand , must sadly report the botched job done by Flammarion's translaters - who obviously didn't know scratch from the world of Fleming when they decided to tackle the job of translating Jeffery Deaver's work into French . Military inaccuracies , basic mispelling , and sometimes...complete misunderstanding of classic lines ( come on , who in the 21rst century cannot translate correctly ' shaken and stirred ' I ask you ? ) .
Which is rather sad for it anihilates most of the interest sustained by this great story .
Coincidently , Flammarion decided to try to ' re launch ' the title by mid July - following disappointingly low sales in the past month .
Heck, like I told'em ' you do not launch a Bond book with a zero promotion budget . ' ( which they did , unfortunately ) .

If you want to win a French edition of Carte Blanche - or a complete set of Eon 007 movies on DvD ! - , try the competition in the ' Concours ' part of the website