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Sweet Caroline

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The dark underworld of espionage and crime is lit up by the gorgeous Modesty Blaise — high priestess of pulp crime. This latest volume features the classic stories Sweet Caroline, The Return of the Mammoth and Plato’s Republic — in which Modesty and Willie pursue an assassins guild; one of Willie’s prize elephants is stolen by Russian agents; and Modesty becomes the target The dark underworld of espionage and crime is lit up by the gorgeous Modesty Blaise — high priestess of pulp crime. This latest volume features the classic stories Sweet Caroline, The Return of the Mammoth and Plato’s Republic — in which Modesty and Willie pursue an assassins guild; one of Willie’s prize elephants is stolen by Russian agents; and Modesty becomes the target of extortionists who are after the intelligence files from her days in The Network! With introductions by creator Peter O’Donnell and exclusive features that takes the reader behind the scenes on the many aspects of Modesty’s world, this latest stylish collection is absolutely essential!


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The dark underworld of espionage and crime is lit up by the gorgeous Modesty Blaise — high priestess of pulp crime. This latest volume features the classic stories Sweet Caroline, The Return of the Mammoth and Plato’s Republic — in which Modesty and Willie pursue an assassins guild; one of Willie’s prize elephants is stolen by Russian agents; and Modesty becomes the target The dark underworld of espionage and crime is lit up by the gorgeous Modesty Blaise — high priestess of pulp crime. This latest volume features the classic stories Sweet Caroline, The Return of the Mammoth and Plato’s Republic — in which Modesty and Willie pursue an assassins guild; one of Willie’s prize elephants is stolen by Russian agents; and Modesty becomes the target of extortionists who are after the intelligence files from her days in The Network! With introductions by creator Peter O’Donnell and exclusive features that takes the reader behind the scenes on the many aspects of Modesty’s world, this latest stylish collection is absolutely essential!

30 review for Sweet Caroline

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mervi

    “Sweet Caroline” begins with a cricket match. Modesty manages to convince Willie to play in one of the teams which is lead by Modesty’s (elderly) friend, an earl. Modesty and sir Tarrant are watching the game. However, the match ends with a tragedy: a cricket ball has a bomb and when the earl hits it, it explodes killing him. Modesty is very upset. Right before the deadly hit, the audience heard a strange message about how Sweet Caroline was behind the next dramatic event. The next day, the news “Sweet Caroline” begins with a cricket match. Modesty manages to convince Willie to play in one of the teams which is lead by Modesty’s (elderly) friend, an earl. Modesty and sir Tarrant are watching the game. However, the match ends with a tragedy: a cricket ball has a bomb and when the earl hits it, it explodes killing him. Modesty is very upset. Right before the deadly hit, the audience heard a strange message about how Sweet Caroline was behind the next dramatic event. The next day, the news tells about two other strange murders which “Sweet Caroline” has arranged. Modesty and Willie scour the underworld and find a very nasty organization of hit men. “The Return of the Mammoth” is one of the more wacky MB adventures and is set partly in Finland! The story begins when Willie gets a phone call in the middle of the night. He leaves immediately for Helsinki, Finland yelling that one of his girls is in danger. Modesty comes to Willie’s pub the next day and worries. She follows him to Helsinki. On the plane, she notices three highly skilled killers for hire. Even though she didn’t know about them, she suspects that they immediately suspect her and attack as soon as they can. She’s right. When she gets to a hotel, the three try to ambush her. However, she notices that Willie’s circus is in Helsinki and their parade walks right next to the hotel. She gets their attention and escapes the killers. In the circus, she finds out that Willie is in Russia. The Russians confiscated one of the circus’ elephants and Willie wants to get her back. Yes, in this story Willie’s “girl” is an elephant! And Modesty and Willie will try to smuggle it over the Finnish-Russian border! I love the set-up of this story! The story itself is also fast-paced and very interesting. “Plato’s Republic” is a deeply personal story for Modesty. It starts with the bad guys. Psychotic Plato and his group of assassins and murderers have taken over an island and the monastery there. They’ve also kidnapped one of Modesty’s former top men, the Greek Krolli. They force his daughter, Melinda, to betray Modesty or they’ll kill her father. Melinda has no choice. She travels to London and lies to Modesty that her father is near death and wants to see Modesty one more time. Of course, Modesty agrees and flies to Greece. However, a helicopter deposits her to the island and Plato captures her, along with Melinda and Krolli. This is one of my favorite set-ups: Modesty in the hands of her enemies in an almost impregnable fortress, and Willie trying to first find her and then free her. The added twist of monks and Modesty’s former right-hand man Krolli makes it very interesting. While I thoroughly enjoyed the other two stories, the Return of Mammoth is one of my favorites for it’s wacky set-up and intense action. A very enjoyable collection of stories.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Richard Clay

    As well as the title story, this one includes 'Return of the Mammoth', in which Willie Garvin, now co-owner of a circus, finds that his favourite elephant, Chloe, has been seized by the KGB while on tour in Cold-War-era Russia. Willie reckons this is out of order. Worse yet, it soon emerges that the KGB plan to impregnate Chloe with defrosted Siberian mammoth sperm - without asking her how she bleedin' well feels about it first! Willie reckons this is bang out of order. So he and Modesty waste n As well as the title story, this one includes 'Return of the Mammoth', in which Willie Garvin, now co-owner of a circus, finds that his favourite elephant, Chloe, has been seized by the KGB while on tour in Cold-War-era Russia. Willie reckons this is out of order. Worse yet, it soon emerges that the KGB plan to impregnate Chloe with defrosted Siberian mammoth sperm - without asking her how she bleedin' well feels about it first! Willie reckons this is bang out of order. So he and Modesty waste no time in setting up a caper whereby a circus elephant is smuggled back across the Iron Curtain. Yes, this is indeed the most ecstatically ludicrous concept for an espionage thriller. Ever. And, no, I do not suppose it had Graham Greene or John LeCarre kicking themselves that they'd not thought of it first, but that's hardly the point, is it? I cannot hide my love for this preposterous story and regret deeply that most sellers are asking silly money for the volume in which it appears. Oi! Titan! Do a bleedin' reprint!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Dave

    Sweet Caroline features an assassins guild with inventive ways of murderising (cricket ball!). Return of the Mammoth is a Cold War caper that pre-dates Jurassic Park (the book too) with a wacky cloning plan by the Ruskies requiring the kidnap on one of Willie’s elephants. What a great sentence I just wrote. Plato's Republic rips off the Greek monastery setting of For Your Eyes Only but the way Willie pulls off the rescue is great. The Sword of the Bruce is ridiculously imaginative nonsense about Sweet Caroline features an assassins guild with inventive ways of murderising (cricket ball!). Return of the Mammoth is a Cold War caper that pre-dates Jurassic Park (the book too) with a wacky cloning plan by the Ruskies requiring the kidnap on one of Willie’s elephants. What a great sentence I just wrote. Plato's Republic rips off the Greek monastery setting of For Your Eyes Only but the way Willie pulls off the rescue is great. The Sword of the Bruce is ridiculously imaginative nonsense about a Scottish highland trek. I’ve got no idea how O’Donnell came up with this stuff. But thank god he did. 10/10

  4. 4 out of 5

    Bob Garrett

    This book collects four complete Modesty Blaise stories, originally published in comic strip form in 1983-1985. The stories are as follows: *”Sweet Caroline” – An organization of hitmen specializes in very public executions. A cricket player is killed at a cricket match by an exploding ball, an actress is killed by being tied to railroad tracks, etc. Modesty Blaise and Willie Garvin investigate. *”Return of the Mammoth” – The Soviets have found a perfectly preserved woolly mammoth frozen in ice. T This book collects four complete Modesty Blaise stories, originally published in comic strip form in 1983-1985. The stories are as follows: *”Sweet Caroline” – An organization of hitmen specializes in very public executions. A cricket player is killed at a cricket match by an exploding ball, an actress is killed by being tied to railroad tracks, etc. Modesty Blaise and Willie Garvin investigate. *”Return of the Mammoth” – The Soviets have found a perfectly preserved woolly mammoth frozen in ice. They steal a female circus elephant named Chloe, hoping to impregnate her with the mammoth’s semen via artificial insemination. Unfortunately for them, Willie Garvin is a co-owner of the circus, and Chloe is his favorite elephant. *Plato’s Republic – Villains have taken over a monastery in Greece, using it as a fortress. They lure Modesty Blaise there and take her hostage. Their demands: Willie Garvin is to bring them all of Modesty’s files from her days running the criminal organization known as the Network. *The Sword of the Bruce – To gain a large inheritance, a Scottish woman must recreate her ancestor’s twelfth century journey through Scotland while carrying a replica of Robert the Bruce’s sword. If she fails, then the fortune goes to her shady relative, who owes a huge gambling debt to the mob. Naturally, the shady relative has plans. “Plato’s Republic” is perhaps the most straightforward of the four tales. It’s about Modesty and Willie finding themselves in a seemingly inescapable trap and then devising a way to escape it. That’s a pretty standard Modesty Blaise formula, and I’m always surprised at O’Donnell’s ability to keep it fresh. He doesn’t disappoint here, either. As you can tell by the plot summaries, the other three tales are all a little daft in one way or another. That quirkiness keeps the strip fun and interesting, though, and O’Donnell manages to avoid silliness and self-parody. “Return of the Mammoth” had the goofiest plot among the four, and yet, it’s my favorite story in this volume. “Sword of the Bruce,” I think, is also somewhat notable for Modesty’s relationship with a macho Scot. Said Scot thinks that he’s needed to protect Modesty when, in fact, Modesty is the one protecting him. Interestingly, Modesty plays into his illusions, knocking him on the head and then telling him that HE was the one who dispatched the villains. He quickly realizes what REALLY happened, however, and then stays out of Modesty’s way. There’s a lot of commentary that O’Donnell could have made here on gender relationships, and for the most part, he skirts around the matter. I give him credit, however, for the characterization, as neither Modesty nor the Scot react in the stereotypical ways that one might expect. Modesty’s decision to play into the chauvinist’s view rather than argue with him is interesting, and I wish that O’Donnell had written more such moments, with perhaps, some more insight as to why Modesty chooses to deal with such men in this fashion. Does this make her a sort of feminist, anti-feminist or neither? Perhaps O’Donnell explores this issue more in other tales (I’m a long way from reading them all), but then, social commentary is admittedly not a hallmark of the “Modesty Blaise” strip. If this volume is any indication, then I’d guess that the mid-1980s was a pretty good period for the strip. O’Donnell was a polished writer, who - from what I’ve seen – seemed to get better and better at his craft as time went on, and he’s in good form here. Although Modesty’s original artist, Jim Holdaway, remains my favorite on the series, Nelville Colvin was also a good choice for the job. His faces are distinctive and very expressive. I recommend this volume, as, of course, I do every Modesty Blaise volume that I’ve read thus far.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Lindig

  6. 4 out of 5

    Rob Rundle

  7. 5 out of 5

    Michael

  8. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

  9. 5 out of 5

    bluetyson

  10. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

  11. 4 out of 5

    A J Plews

  12. 5 out of 5

    Mrs Mallott

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jon Hansen

  14. 5 out of 5

    Bill Reynolds

  15. 5 out of 5

    Berilia

  16. 5 out of 5

    Neil Campbell

  17. 4 out of 5

    Thaddeus602

  18. 4 out of 5

    Karl Hickey

  19. 5 out of 5

    Satyajeet

  20. 4 out of 5

    Mike Burchette

  21. 5 out of 5

    David Moreland

  22. 5 out of 5

    Brett Bydairk

  23. 4 out of 5

    Connor

  24. 4 out of 5

    Ajm Korver

  25. 5 out of 5

    Brett

  26. 5 out of 5

    Shyue Chou Chuang

  27. 5 out of 5

    Ravi Avva

  28. 4 out of 5

    Elfbiter

  29. 5 out of 5

    Erik Carl son

  30. 4 out of 5

    Antaeus

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