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Licence to Kill (John Gardner's Bond, #9)
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Licence to Kill (John Gardner's Bond #9)

3.42 of 5 stars 3.42  ·  rating details  ·  579 ratings  ·  20 reviews
What begins as a joyous wedding for Bond's old CIA chum, Felix Leiter, turns into a hellish nightmare--when an evil billionaire drug lord flies into town and his henchmen brutally assassinate Leiter and his bride. Now, Bond is out for blood, and he is prepared to do anything--even give up his license to kill--to avenge the death of his friends.
Mass Market Paperback, 294 pages
Published June 1989 by Charter (first published 1989)
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Best Novelizations
36th out of 134 books — 21 voters
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Best Movie Novelisations
7th out of 60 books — 8 voters

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Community Reviews

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What starts as a joyous celebration - the wedding of his old friend Felix Leiter - becomes a nightmare which takes James Bond on a path of revenge against the evil billionaire drug lord Franz Sanchez. 007 is prepared to ignore Secret Service orders and even sacrifice his licence to kill to avenge his enemies. This novelisation (the first of two by the then-current James Bond writer, John Gardner, who also had fourteen original 007 novels to his name) sticks fairly close to the film screenplay (b ...more

My love of 007 and specifically the film LICENCE TO KILL precludes me from ranking this less than 3 stars, but - sadly - there are several really great lines and moments in the film that are inexplicably not in the novel. I say inexplicably because - sure - I understand why certain fantastical elements of the film wouldn't translate into a novel based in reality, yet there are some that crept into the book. Either way, I'm not certain at which point in the script this book was adap
Nice little read. It really has some good and bad points. I liked the style of writing, it was quick, but not so quick that you lose track of what you're reading. It was also ironic about it's realism, which is really nice. The feminism in this book was a bit dubious to me: sometimes Bond treats women absolutely horrible, or women in general are portrayed as less, but then the main female character comes around and she's awesome and kicks ass and really knows what she's doing, and most of all, s ...more
Ron Castillo
John Gardner, the spiritual successor to Ian Fleming was commissioned by MGM/UA to write an original story for Timothy Dalton, the 4th actor to play James Bond agent 007 in the 16th film in the Bond franchise. The story was meant to be more realistic then previous Bond endeavors using more realistic situations and less high tech gadgetry. Plucked from the headlines of 1989, License to Kill sees Bond pursuing a Colombian Drug Lord named Sanchez who has fled custody in the Florida Keys after slaug ...more
pretty awful but in fairness the fantastical elements of the film would need to be presented in this book but as such these scenes begger belief and leave you thinking John Gardner may have been better sticking with his Bond stories and letting someone else write the tie in.
by nature Bond Movies are more preposterous than the books given the news to engage and excite an audience..a book needs to grip too but usually succeed in doing this through subtle building plots.
the idea of Bond teetering f
Cheris Hodges
So much better than the movie.
Cosmic Dwellings
Not a "sequel", as stated, to John Gardner's first Bond continuation novel "Licence Renewed", for it is the novelisation of the 1989 movie of the same name. However, it's an exciting and well-paced representation of the movie and certainly one of my Gardner favourites. And, if like me, you enjoyed this change of pace for the celluloid Bond franchise back in the day, you'll certainly like reading it too!
I know everyone hates the movie(I don't) that this book is based on. Well, if that's the case, read the book, as it is actually better than the movie(although the tanker chase just doesn't read as exciting as watching it). Most people dislike Gardner's book's when compared with Fleming's, but this one is top notch. The only problem is, Gardner goes to slightly...schizofrenic means to tie License to Kill in with the on-going Fleming series. Seeing as that Milton Krest appeared in an earlier(but a ...more
From IMDb:
James Bond goes rogue and sets off to unleash vengeance on a drug lord who tortured his best friend, a C.I.A. agent, and left him for dead and murdered his bride after he helped capture him.
Kevin Orrman-Rossiter
I think the estate of Ian Fleming should have left James Bond alone. This "novel based on the screen-play" demonstrated adequately that Ian Fleming, and only he, had the measure of James Bond.
Jan 07, 2015 Sarah rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2015
an easy read
Absolute pulp that I got for free. Was kinda interesting though as it made me realize how much of an unfeeling sociopath so many iconic movie characters like this are. Gardner adds nothing to the paper-thin-ness. Bond might as well be a rock smashing things as it rolls down a hill - no consciousness, no feeling - just the gravity of poorly thought out vengeance.

But that's pulp for you.
Brian Gilchrist
having just finished Fleming's short stories, with 50s and early 60s era references, I really struggled with getting the Timothy Dalton Bond out of my head ( yes I know the book is based on the movie). interesting that names from other Bond stories appeared as different characters
I remember first reading this in fifth grade. It is not a fantastic Bond story--the writing seems especially clunky and simplistic at times--but I do love to the drama of Bond going to avenge his best friend's mutilation at the teeth of a shark. A quick, effortless read, but Gardner is no Fleming. Clearly.
I must've seen the movie version of this (because I've seen all the Bond movies) but I had no recollection of it going into the book - which was good, because I was able to enjoy the book without stumbling over plot changes.
Another of the "new" Bond thillers. More of a synopsis of the movie than in the style of Ian Fleming. It kept me entertained for a day or two, but just barely.
Ryan Scicluna
A very gd James bond book. I admit it lacks a bit in style and finesse but the story in itself is dark and violent so it makes sense.
Kept the feel of the Fleming novels quite well, I though.
A. Moses Levitt
Ga tahu kapan bacanya..terlalu lampau..
needed something to read, mindless...
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Before coming an author of fiction in the early 1960s, John Gardner was variously a stage magician, a Royal Marine officer and a journalist. In all, Gardner has fifty-four novels to his credit, including Maestro, which was the New York Times book of the year. He was also invited by Ian Fleming’s literary copyright holders to write a series of continuation James Bond novels, which proved to be so s ...more
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Other Books in the Series

John Gardner's Bond (1 - 10 of 16 books)
  • License Renewed (John Gardner's Bond, #1)
  • For Special Services (John Gardner's Bond, #2)
  • Icebreaker (John Gardner's Bond, #3)
  • Role of Honor (John Gardner's Bond, #4)
  • Nobody Lives Forever (John Gardner's Bond, #5)
  • No Deals, Mr. Bond (John Gardner's Bond, #6)
  • Scorpius (John Gardner's Bond, #7)
  • Win, Lose or Die (John Gardner's Bond, #8)
  • Brokenclaw (John Gardner's Bond, #10)
  • The Man from Barbarossa (John Gardner's Bond, #11)

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