Hurricane Gold

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 06 January, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 06 January, 2008, 12:00am

Hurricane Gold

by Charlie Higson

Puffin, HK$207

Hurricane Gold may make it onto the bookshelves of adult James Bond fans, but as part of Charlie Higson's Young Bond collection it was intended for readers younger than 14. The fourth in the series, it was conceived by Ian Fleming Publications to tie in with the Fleming novels, which means facts coincide, as does the time scale. In this volume Bond again proves his mettle, in a narrative packed with adventure and violence. Sex, however, is not overt, these being books to whet the appetite for the real thing later. The novel begins on Lagrimas Negras in the Caribbean, a refuge for wealthy criminals where wicked Mexican crime boss El Huracan shows his creativity in dealing with those who break the island's rules.

Bond, recuperating at his aunt's home in Mexico, finds himself in the thick of things when the children of the family he is staying with are kidnapped. In trying to save them he, too, ends up on Lagrimas Negras. Included in Higson's pacy tale are robbers and yakuza as well as guns and vicious ants. There is also a deadly obstacle course Bond must conquer if he is to escape from the island with his girl ... and a hungry crocodile is the gatekeeper.