Modesty Blaise
Mister Sun

Author: Peter O'Donnell
Artist: Jim Holdaway
Titan Books
RRP 10.99, US S16.95
ISBN 1 84023 721 X

Available 25 June 2004

Thrown into a searing hotbed of danger and conspiracy, Modesty Blaise will need all her skills and instincts when she incurs the wrath of a Hong Kong master criminal. Trapped between saving a friend and sacrificing her own beliefs, she is caught in the bloody tempest of the Vietnam War and must battle to survive the vengeance of Mister Sun...

Mister Sun is the second Modesty Blaise collection to be released by Titan to collect the classic Evening Standard newspaper strips.

I must admit to being a little apprehensive when I was asked to review this collection. While I'd heard of Modesty Blaise, I'd never read any of the strips and I was a little dubious as to whether it really was, as advertised: "Bond in heels".

Thankfully this collection, originally released in the '60s, has aged like a fine wine. Sure, there is a slight sexist hint to some of the panels, but that is to be expected considering it's age. But, on the whole, this is a cracking series.

There is a great background feature at the start of this collection, which sets the scene and explains some of the background to the strips. There is also a very interesting interview with the creator, Peter O'Donnell.

The only slight moan I had was that some of the strips end in the middle of a page, leaving a lot of rather odd looking half blank pages. It was a shame that these weren't filled with other images - maybe of the covers of the books, some of which are included in the introduction. Or maybe some rough sketches - if any still exist.

If you've never experienced a Modesty Blaise novel, or read the original strip, then you are in for a treat. If you have, you won't need my recommendation, you'll already have ordered this.

Pete Boomer

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