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Thursday, 24 February 2011

THE COMPLETE LITERARY 007 - Wrapping up on Fleming

And that brings us to then end of the first part of The Archive's look at the complete literary OO7 - all that is left is to mention the short stories Fleming wrote about the Bond character, eight of which were contained in the anthology Bond titles, For Your Eyes Only and Octopussy. Fleming also wrote the short story, 007 in New York which was originally published in 1963 in The New York Herald Tribune.

For Your Eyes only contained:
From a view to a kill
For your eyes only
Quantum of Solace
The Hildebrand Rarity.

Octopussy Contained:
The Property of a Lady
The Living Daylights

Currently all of the stories, including 007 in New York are collected in the Quantum of Solace collection.

Ian Fleming has always been a favourite writer of mine. I devoured the books when I was younger, and continue to dip into Fleming's world from time to time.

The books, although by Fleming's own admission, were pot-boilers, they represented a level of sophistication, or at least suggested sophistication, not found with other action adventure books

The Bond character was a superb creation, which is why he still lives on in popular culture today. Someone, maybe a critic, once said something like, "Bond is the man every man want to be and the man every woman wants to be with". And you know there just might be some truth in that.

Rest in peace, Ian Fleming for even now, many years since your passing, you still provide readers with many hours of pleasure. A fine legacy indeed.

He truly was an outstanding writer - and maybe because of the massive popularity of the film series, he has never been granted the full respect he deserves for his part in the development of the popular novel. The Bond books were easy to read but that's not to say they were shallow. Far from it and Fleming carried on a long tradition of adventure fiction that went back to John Buchan, Robert Louis Stevenson and beyond.

Next up in this series we start on the second stage of 007 literature, those Bond books not written by Fleming.


Davieboy said...

Most enjoyable journey therough the books. I'm a big fan of audiobooks; a couple of years back I listened to the whole Boond series and they were all gripping.

Some were a little dated, and would now possibly be considered racist, particularly when Bond is in the US, but were all cracking.

BTW My fave these days is Jack Reacher, though I think Lee Child should let him go down in a blaze of glory and come up with a new character.
I have 48 hardback copies of Lee Child's "The Killing Floor" (the 1st Reacher novel) to give away for "World Book Day" in March, to encourage the reading habit...

Gary Dobbs/Jack Martin said...

Davie when you give those books away let me know the details - I can slot them into the Archive's world book day report.