Another hilarious Bond parody in the shape of THE GIRL WITH THE GOLDEN BOUFFANT. James Bond's out of commission and his sister Jane must step once more into his shoes, his smoking jacket, and his girlfriend's bedroom...
When James Bond lands in hospital as the result of a nasty facial burn - while lighting a bird's cigarette, his hair pomade explodes -- Jane Bond, his lesbian twin sister and occasional impersonator, once again dons suit and scars to masquerade as her infamous brother. Her destination: the annual spy convention in the glamorous Las Vegas of the Rat Pack era. Her assignment: to keep her brother's reputation intact through a carefully plotted program of gambling, boozing, and womanising.
Along for the ride are British Secret Service Agent Cedric Pumpernickel, Jane's only ally in the male spy world, and glamorous girlfriend, and G.E.O.R.G.I.E. agent, Bridget St Claire, who finds herself the unwilling love interest of a scrawny lounge singer who, along with his pack of friends, begins a campaign to bed her.The relatively ordinary convention - featuring the latest in jet pack transportation and stylish decoder rings - becomes the scene for murder when someone tosses an Estonian secret agent off the observation deck of Hoover Dam. Days spent at the blackjack table - and nights in the arms of her beautiful girlfriend - come to an abrupt end as Jane uncovers a nefarious plot to eliminate all the best spies of the western world.
Complicating the plot is a romance gone sour: an affair between Agent Pumpernickel and musical sensation Liberace has ended badly, and when Pumpernickel takes to his bed with a box of chocolates and a copy of Queen magazine, Jane must become England's top-action man and stop the killer before he stops her.
About the Author
Mabel Maney, author of the Nancy Clue and Hardly Boys mystery series, lives in San Francisco, California.
Read an Excerpt
The Girl with the Golden BouffantAn Original Jane Bond Parody
By Maney, Mabel
The request had come, as usual, in the form of a telegram slipped under her door. AUNT HARRIET AILING. REQUIRE YOUR IMMEDIATE ASSISTANCE. TAKE THREE O'CLOCK TRAIN TOMORROW. UNCLE FRANK. "Aunt Harriet" was her brother, James Bond. "Uncle Frank" was N., head of the notorious double-0 department of Her Majesty's Secret Service. "Immediate assistance" meant that Jane Bond would soon be packing her spy kit for another appearance as her brother, 007. Whether she was at the opening of a new branch office or the retirement luncheon of a beloved Secret Service secretary, she had only simple tasks that required little more than donning a special suit and spending a few hours smiling, smirking, and sneering. She had wrenched her neck once attempting all three at the same time, while trying to inject some humor into the typically dull assignments. Still, it was better than being on the dole. Since her work for the Secret Service was strictly top-hush, kept from agents and bureaucrats alike, N. paid her in cash and put her on his expense account under the heading of "Necessary Evil."
In the past year, since agreeing to the charade, Jane had averaged one assignment a month and was still making three times what she had earned at her last job as a bookshop clerk. Thirty-two years old and she was back in her brother's shadow, working for a man she detested, for an organization whose policies she abhorred, all for that envelope of crisp pound notes shoved under her door every Monday morning that allowed her to live as she pleased. Her James Bond kit contained a suit, a martini glass, stick-on scars, and The Bachelor's Guide to 101 Pickup Lines, but no Walther PPK, Bondmobile, or state-of-the-art spy gadgets. She knew that her appearances were meant to undercut rumors of her brother's decline; she was window dressing, her brother's stand-in when he drank himself into a coma or broke both legs while mixing martinis on skis. She had been content with her lightweight role, and then G.E.O.R.G.I.E. Agent Bridget St. Claire came along and offered, among other things, to make her a real secret agent. And the double-agent aspect appealed to Jane's twin nature. After six weeks of G.E.O.R.G.I.E. spy school, spent learning to mix incendiary devices from biscuit powder and invisible ink from commonly available citrus fruits, becoming a topnotch shot and a fair cryptographer, she was eager for her first real assignment. She had waited long enough.
But not for this. When N. announced she would be attending the Spy Convention in Las Vegas as her brother, in hospital recovering from a nasty burn, her first reaction was to decline the job. It was too risky; her true identity would surely be revealed the minute she walked into a room filled with her brother's colleagues. "I'll be with you all the way," said Agent Pumpernickel from underneath N.'s desk, where he was searching for a boiled sweet he had dropped. Cedric was technically retired after twenty-five years' service, and when he wasn't parading Jane around town, he was in front of the telly in his dressing gown and slippers, eating Violet Crumbles and wondering why love had passed him by. "And I could stand a holiday," he said, holding up a sourball covered in gold carpet fuzz. Jane had left N.'s office unconvinced.
The next day Miss Tuppenny contacted Jane and made it clear that her days as a simple stand-in were over; she was as skilled, if not as practiced, as any G.E.O.R.G.I.E. agent, and it was time to get her out into the field. No beginner was sent on a mission alone, however, and especially not that far from headquarters; Jane's backup, Agents Bridget St. Claire and Bibi Gallini, would fly to Las Vegas with her (but not with her) and maintain undercover status while remaining available should the mission prove more difficult than expected. Jane was to behave as if she were on her own, calling on Bridget and Bibi only in a pinch. Miss Tuppenny had also ordered that if Agent Pumpernickel, who had almost no field experience, having spent the majority of his career behind a desk ordering office supplies, should happen upon the invention first -- an unlikely scenario -- Jane should let him have it. There was no sense putting her job with the Secret Service in jeopardy when Miss Tuppenny could arrange for the invention to "disappear" from the weapons closet. This way nothing could possibly go wrong. It was, Miss Tuppenny was convinced, a perfect way for Jane to stretch her double-agent wings.
When Jane heard this, her reservations about the mission were replaced with a determination to prove herself by securing the invention for G.E.O.R.G.I.E. without involving Bridget and Bibi. She would not ring them on her spy phone -- a plain, black men's wallet that became a telephone with the addition of a ballpoint-pen antenna and receiver hidden in a Kennedy half-dollar -- until she had the invention in her hands.
So, on the fifteenth day of September, Agents Jane Bond (as James) and Cedric Pumpernickel boarded a British Airways 707. Their cover: two British gentlemen, members in good standing of the International Association of Accident-Prone People, heading for their organization's convention in Las Vegas. Their mission: to approach the unidentified creator of a top-secret invention and secure exclusive rights for Britain. After they'd settled themselves in their seats, Jane turned and looked seven rows back at her lover, G.E.O.R.G.I.E. Agent Bridget St. Claire, disguised as a bored Italian contessa, and winked. Bridget smiled and then quickly ducked behind her Italian Vogue when Cedric turned around to ask the child behind him to please refrain from kicking his seat.
At Bridget's side was her partner, Agent Bibi Gallini, disguised as the bored Italian contessa's pouty French maid. Bibi was a compulsive womanizer ...and a practiced thief ... Continues...
Excerpted from The Girl with the Golden Bouffant by Maney, Mabel Excerpted by permission.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This time: less sex and more farce. Oh, so silly. Despite a handful of gaps in the author's grasp of British English, and several copyediting errors, I think I enjoyed this sequel more than its predecessor.