It was twenty years ago this month (April 1997) that Raymond’s first James Bond novel was published in the UK by Hodder & Stoughton. ZERO MINUS TEN marked the first time an American author assumed the mantle of penning original adult 007 books. It was published in the US in May ’97 by Putnam, and was serialized in Playboy magazine (April and May ’97). The locations include Hong Kong/Kowloon, Macau, China, Australia, England, and Jamaica.
From the jacket flap: “In ten days, Hong Kong will pass into the hands of the Chinese–and 007 is on his way there to undertake his most dangerous and thrilling mission yet. In the Australian desert, a nuclear bomb explodes. There are no survivors, and no clues about who has made it or detonated it. In England, two police officers are shot dead when they apprehend a cargo vessel in Portsmouth dock. Vast quantities of heroin are later found on board. And in Hong Kong, an explosion rips through one of the colony’s famous floating restaurants, killing the entire Board of Directors of EurAsia Enterprises Ltd, a multi-billion dollar shipping corporation. The People’s Republic of China is about to resume control after a century and a half of British rule–and the colony is a powder keg waiting to explode. The tension reaches breaking point when a solicitor from one of Britain’s most prestigious law firms is killed in a car bomb at Government House. These apparently random events are connected–and Bond must find out how and why. From the seedy strip clubs of Kowloon, 007’s investigations bring him into conflict with ruthless Triad gangs, a power-hungry Chinese general–and a beautiful night club hostess called Sunni Pei. All enquiries seem to lead to EurAsia Enterprises Ltd–and its assassinated owner. James Bond is about to come up against one of the most formidable adversaries of his career. A new era of high adventure, intrigue and danger begins for James Bond with Raymond Benson’s eagerly awaited 007 thriller–a story of sensuality and nonstop excitement.”
The novel is currently in print in the trade paperback anthology, CHOICE OF WEAPONS, as an e-book on Amazon Kindle, and as an audiobook. Original print copies of the UK or US hardcover or paperback are often available on Amazon Marketplace and eBay. You can find Amazon links here.