I was sixteen when the first James Bond release hit the silver screens in America -- "Dr. No." In fact, I was on one of my first dates, my first time ever at a drive-in ... and with a guy, too.
Since then, every handsome version of James Bond and I have had an ongoing affair. I love his macho debonair attitude, the Aston Martins, the Seville Row suits and gold cuff links, the super-cool gadgets, the martinis, shaken not stirred and the glittery jet-set. Oh, and the double-entendres and roll-your-eye quips, let's not forget those. I love a good play on words.
In my romantic suspense MONA LISA'S ROOM, Alyson and Niko are walking through Paris at night. Here's an excerpt of their conversation:
“From time to time, yes. Other agents use it more often. I rarely catch a protection detail anymore. For the most part, I am a nine-to-five worker, living with my maman in the same house where I grew up.”
Aly’s soft chuckle turned his head. “In America, we have a running joke about grown men who still live with their mothers.”
“Which is?” He was enjoying her company and wished she were up to walking for another hour or so, but she’d been through too much today. She deserved a bit of pampering.
“Well, they are either momma’s boys, who will never marry, or lazy men who want to live off mother instead of getting a job.”
“Ah, but I have a job. So, that only leaves momma’s boy. Since I’m not married, I guess that applies.” He glared at her for a beat. “Wait, that’s not a bad thing, is it?”
Aly’s laugh caressed both the night and his heart. Something he would do well to guard, because when she left Paris—and she would—he would be lost again, just like he was after losing Hae-Won. He glanced away for a beat, willing those awful feelings of despair and guilt back to the dark depths of his soul.
She was still chuckling, and he welcomed her mirth. “A government agent momma’s boy.” She cocked her head and gazed up at him. “Has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?”
He wrapped his arm around her shoulders and drew her close. “Great! Just what I need in my life, another smart-alecky woman. ” Lively music wafted from the many cafes dotting the street, like lights on a Christmas tree. The cafés were doing their usual brisk business. Laughter, conversations, wine corks popping, espresso machines hissing and that wonderful Parisian blend of sweet and pungent aromas scenting the night air signaled home for him.
“What duties does the second in command of the counterterrorism unit have?”
“I do a variety of things. The unit was revamped three years ago, and I was asked to take over this position.”
“Where did you work before?” Two young men shouldered their way past them, and Niko mentally noted their descriptions.
“Interpol. I traveled a lot on that job, but now with the French counterterrorism unit I am usually here in the city. I mainly handle analytical and administrative duties with less and less assignments in the field.” He guided her around a large group of young adults standing in the middle of the sidewalk, teasing and taunting each other.
“Are you happy about that, James-momma’s-boy-Bond?”
Well, listen to her. The woman had a charming sense of humor when she relaxed enough to use it. “Yes, for the most part, I’m very satisfied with my job, especially if I help apprehend the bad guys.”
“Like you did today?” She cast her blue eyes on him again.
“The ones I caught today are not my ultimate target.” No, his ultimate target was the leader of The Red Hand, this ring of miscreants and killers. The man known as the architect of death, the man who was responsible for Hae-Won’s death.
Several times within the book, my heroine refers to Niko as James-momma's-boy-Bond. So imagine my thrill when it was announced "Skyfall," the 23rd Bond movie in the 50th anniversary year of the franchise would open here in the States on the same day as my book releases. I was thrilled!
Frankly, I think James is riding on my shirt tails -- major LOL moment here -- but you know I just can't deny James anything. We've got a lot in common, he and I.