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Book reviews for "Fleming,_Ian" sorted by average review score:

Siren Song
Published in Hardcover by Forge (01 July, 2003)
Author: Quinn Fawcett
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007 lite
Before catching his plane in the morning to go to his winter vacation home in Jamaica, Ian Fleming attends a New Year's Eve Party in London. There he finds himself attracted to journalist Nora Blair DeYoung. However, his efforts towards an evening of delightful romance before hopping his plane fail.

Before boarding his plane, two British intelligence agents order Ian, a World War II naval intelligence agent, but now a reporter, to smear American Oscar Winterberg, who they believe is selling secrets to the Russians. The governments of both the Americans and the British strongly believe Oscar is a Communist spy, though the evidence is flimsy. Ian refuses before leaving for Jamaica. Soon to his delight Nora joins him at his vacation home, but she did not come for fun in the sun as she works for the Americans and wants Ian to join forces with her. His objective is to keep the spy he loves safe while hers is to expose Winterberg.

Though exciting at times, Ian Fleming is just not James Bond even if the premise of this novel and its predecessor DEATH TO SPIES is that the author modeled 007 after his own activities. The story line will hook the die-hard fans, especially those that remember Lazenby and Allen as Bond respectively. The story line is filled with action, but Fleming's motive to assist the peril of Pauline Nora never fully comes across. Still this espionage thriller brings to life the 1950s with its Red Scare so that readers will overall enjoy this 007 lite.

Harriet Klausner

You only live once : memories of Ian Fleming
Published in Unknown Binding by University Publications of America ()
Author: Ivar Bryce
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Fleming Fan
Having read the Bio of Ian some years ago(first published in 1975),I have finally located a copy I am able to purchase for my collection.A wonderful insight to Ian written by his personal friend Ivar.

Published in Hardcover by MacMillan Pub Co (1955)
Author: Ian Fleming
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Bond enters the atomic era
Fleming's third Bond novel is quite a good one. The pace is slower than the previous one, "Live and Let Die", but anyway faster than "Casino Royale" (and, like the latter, includes one excellent card-game scenario). It's amazing how the author takes us from 007 at his most domestic to the (then) most sci-fi adventure. The villain, Drax, may look as someone took from a nightmare but Fleming describes him in such detail -dialogue, appearence, mood, idiosincracies and the story of his life- that the character becomes completely "real" (even upsetting the reader as much as he upsets Bond in the book). Drax's speech (heard on the radio by 007) when Moonraker is about to get fired is simply the best monologue Fleming ever conceived or wrote. Superb, funny yet amazingly dangerous! And Gala Brand, the heroine, just not falls into Bond's arms like so many, leaving the secret agent reflecting alone about their different lives and showing us his vulnerability instead of the wrongly-assumed 007's eternal success with women. It's a pity the film version spoiled this title (actually, the title is the only resemblance to the novel), taking Bond to three countries and outer space while this excellent down-to-earth adventure story goes no farther than London and Dover. The rocket ready to blow Buckingham Palace is a more atractive and original idea by far. Bond save the Queen, indeed!

good but outdated
This was a good read but it had nothing to do with the movie except for the name. Also, since it was written in the 50's, it is a little behind modern high-tech spy thrillers. But it is still nicely written and enjoyable to read.

One of the best, if not THE best.
I have to admit that I just couldn't put this book down. Every single page is intriguing and suspenseful, and contains an elaborate plot where ex-Nazi Sir Hugo Drax, head of the Moonraker nuclear missile project, is secretly planning to destroy London to gain revenge for his country's defeat in World War 2. Moonraker is rather like two books in one: the first part of the story centers on a card game at an exclusive gambling club, where 'M' has called Bond to investigate the suspicion of Drax cheating. In a brilliant sequence, Bond discovers Drax's ruse. This sets the stage for the second part, where 007 goes to Dover and finds out the terrifying secret about Drax and Moonraker.... Ian Fleming provides some intriguing touches looking into Bond's thoughts about his job, not to mention making Drax look like a grotesquely evil figure, and the Bond girl Gala Brand is impressive in that she plays a key part in discovering Drax's evil scheme, but she never really falls in love with Bond - rather an anomaly. In summary, Moonraker is a classic James Bond thriller from Mr. Fleming and is every bit as good as the film of the same name. (Interesting point: in the book Fleming compares Drax as a Lonsdale-type, in the film Drax is played by actor Michael Lonsdale. Coincidence?)

James Bond: The Secret World of 007
Published in Hardcover by DK Publishing (01 October, 2000)
Authors: Alastair Dougall, Roger Stewart, and Dave Worrall
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This is a fun book to the max! The Dorling Kindersely art work...layout, graphics, and eye-popping POP-OUT superb (compares admirably with, among others, DK's fine computer software projects). Fans of 007 will admit that Bond, the gadgetry, and his 40-year pantheon/array of vicious villains and delicious vixens never (Say Never?)looked better. The book opens with a quick, wry prologue from "M" (the Judi Dench incarnation). A visually arresting DOSSIER highlighting Bond's inimitable style, women, weapons, allies...especially Q, Wizard of MI-6...and arch enemy Ernst Stavro Blofeld follows. Then the OHMSS missions...from Dr. No to The World is Not Enough...are given a classy "declassification". The book concludes with a review of THE BOND film canon (The Harry Saltzman-Albert Broccoli/Eon "For Your Eyes Only" productions) and a look at the 5 actors who have...thus far...essayed the role of the now mythical 007. "JAMES BOND: The Secret World of 007" is an Aston Martin DB5 ride into "danger" and fun with Ian Fleming's icon of matchless adventure, spectacle and super-heroism. The only real DANGER...this opus is your classic "coffee table" center piece... is that a bit of un-Bonded clumsiness on the part of a reader might "bloody-up" the book with a bit of tea, soda or Dom Perignon because this is one Coffee Table book that people will read and thoroughly enjoy.

One of the Best Books on the James Bond Films from DK
If you are a James Bond fan this book from Dorling Kindersley is nothing less than fantastic. Dorling Kindersley is starting to corner the market on good looking and attractive books. This book is very visually conceived, designed and presented so this book is right up Dorling Kindersley's alley. They know how to do it right. Each James Bond film is addressed with an emphasis on its production design (gadgets, sets, etc.). We are given 3 dimensional views of key sets from each film. This is what I really liked about it. This is a great companion book to Sally Hibbon's 'The Official James Bond Movie Book' which was also very beautifully presented. If you love the cinematic world of James Bond this book from Dorling Kindersley is for you. This is a book you thought they never would make, but they did. This book holds a special place in my collection.

James Bond is Real!
This amazing book brings to reality the fantasy world of 007. It provides details about everything and anything to do with James Bond as if he were a real secret agent.

There are three main sections:

1. The Bond Dossier - here you will find background information on Bond (the weapons, clothes, women), MI6 and the villains. (As this book is targeted at today's 'kids', it uses images of the actors from the latest film, The World Is Not Enough - Brosnan, Dench, etc. - as the 'real' James Bond and MI6 team.)

2. The Missions - this section dedicates 4 - 6 pages for each of Bond's 'missions' (i.e. the 19 Bond films), describing what the 'mission' is about and who the allies and villains are. There are detailed cross-section illustrations of the villains' headquarters, e.g. Blofeld's volcano, Stromberg's Atlantis and Elliot Carver's Stealth Ship, and also wonderful photos/illustrations of the Bond vehicles and gadgets, e.g. the DB5, Lotus, Little Nellie, etc. These pictures miraculously show how everything falls into place and how everything works (a miracle considering most of these things don't really function or even exist in real life!)

3. The Movies - the book ends with background information on 'movies' that have been made about James Bond, featuring the 5 actors who have portrayed him. The introduction to this section diplomatically concludes: "The real 007 has never disclosed which one (actor) he feels has captured him the best"! (It is only in this last section that we see pictures of Connery, Lazenby, Moore and Dalton.)

This is definitely one of the best books on James Bond. It is well researched and has breath-taking pictures, as per DK's usual high standards. It beautifully and convincingly transforms the fiction of Bond into reality.

I actually have the British version of this book and it has a simple but more official looking cover - just the title of the book on a plain red jacket with an embossed "James Bond". Maybe not as fun looking as the American version but definitely a lot easier to carry around for a thirty-something 'kid' like me!

Hints on Household Taste: The Classic Handbook of Victorian Interior Decoration
Published in Paperback by Dover Pubns (1986)
Author: Charles L. Eastlake
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Meet James Bond
Having seen all of the Bond films, I decided that it was time to begin reading the novels that started it all. Where to begin? With "Casino Royale", of course, where the world was introduced to 007. I found this book to be entertaining, with a bit of a dark edge to it. Not much character development; we don't really get a very good description of who Bond is or even what he looks like. This could possibly be due to the fact that Fleming did not intend to create a series of 007 novels, or it could've been a conscious effort to leave character development for later books. Regardless, "Casino Royale" is a good read, if not exactly a hot page turner. It is definitely interesting for those intrigued by 007; an absolute neccesity for those who wish to read the entire series

Where It All Began
Casino Royale was written in 1953 and is the first appearance of the Bond character, nine years before the first movie, Dr. No. He even introduces himself as "Bond, JAMES Bond" in this book.

I read all the Bond books in chronological order as a teenager in the 70's and decided to reread them since it has been so long and I have forgotten them to some degree, and started off just recently with the the first, Casino Royale.

What I like about he Bond character in the books, and in particular Casino Royale is that he is not the impregnable super spy; you can really sense the insidious danger he is in throughout the book.

The plot is about a Soviet SMERSH agent in France named La Chiffre who invested all the money SMERSH sent him in support of the Communist underground, on brothels. When France made them illegal, he suddenly had no money. His plan is to win it all back at the baccarat tables at Casino Royale. Bond's job--to beat him at the card table and prevent him from getting his money back. This will put him in bad form with SMERSH and disrupt the Communist fifth column in France.

In response to the "reader" who's review appears here at Amazon from April 1997, who asked why Bond was needed Bond and La Chiffre wins back all is money at the baccarat tables, and his disruptive underground Soviet fifth column goes on in France.

It would be interesting to see the Bond movies done over adhering to the books where one could sense the danger Bond faced. Some of the early movies were similar to the books, but then began to deviate creating a plastic, unrealistic character that we really know is in no real danger.

Casino Royale introduces the world to agent 007.
Casino Royale introduces us to James Bond, among the most enduring and popular cultural icons of all time. After a KGB official known as Le Chiffre has misused Soviet funds, Bond is dispatched to break his bank at the bacarat table where Le Chiffre is attempting to rebuild his funds. SMERSH is already hunting Le Chiffre down, and this will hasten this powerful Soviet agent's demise, publicly humiliating him in the process. Intriguingly, this plot almost takes a backseat to the development of Bond's relationship with Vesper Lynd, the very first Bond girl. Le Chiffre meets his fate with about seventy pahes of the novel remaining. Vesper's secret, and the effect it has on Bond, sets the tone for Bond's future relations with women, and helps to explain why he treats them as he does. This novel is riveting, and Ian Fleming creates an aura of danger and excitement even at a casino table. If you haven't yet read a Bond novel, this is the place to start.

.NET Development Security Solutions
Published in Paperback by Sybex (16 September, 2003)
Author: John Paul Mueller
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More Like 4 and a 1/2 Stars
This book is good...not great, just, good. It isn't as Good as the previous Bond Book, Casino Royale(read my review), and that is why I gave it 4 and a half stars instead of 5.

It starts out slow, like all Fleming Books do, but it gradually builds itself up to a great closing action sequence. Sorry, no surprise ending this time around for Bond(even though it seems like there is going to be one). Anyways, the book seems like two books combined. For one, it's rather longer than "Casino," but, it's the build-up that will keep you from falling asleep. everything is really well described, you can imagine everything. My favorite part is(don't worry, I wont give away any spoilers)towards the end, when bond is,...uh, the water(i'm trying to keep it a surprise for those who haven't read it yet) It is very descriptive and very exciting. All in all, it starts out long and slow and boring, but I beg you, don't put it down...please, just hold out at least to the Harlem, NY part(which is only 3 or 4 chapters in), and I promise it will get better. So, read this book, you'll like it...eventually:)

The Literary James Bond comes into his own
Live and Let Die was Ian Fleming's second book to feature the secret agent and future icon, James Bond and although the book directly follows up on the storyline started in the previous Casino Royale (i.e., Bond's initial motivation is revenge against the Soviet Smersh for the events at the end of that novel), Live and Let Die is in many ways a different animal entirely and a fairly good harbringer of the future emphasis on adventure and exotic villians and lovers that would dominate the series. Whereas the Bond introduced in Casino Royale was, at times, surprisingly niave, Live and Let Die's James Bond is more in line with the death defying superspy that most think of when they here the term "007." Still, the Bond seen here is still much more vulnerable and, at times, much more ruthlessly unlikeable than the Bond film character -- an aspect the keeps this book rooted in reality and, in my opinion, makes the literary Bond far superior to his movie doppleganger.

The plot of Live and Let Die will probably be problematic for some politically correct readers. James Bond travels from Harlem to Jamaica in pursuit of Mr. Big, a gangster and Soviet agent who also happens to be black and, at one point, proclaims that his goal is to be the first "great Negro criminal." Mr. Big's criminal organization is, as well, made up totally a blacks and a great deal of time is spent explaining that Big keeps his organization in line by exploiting their belief in voodoo. Obviously, this is the type of stuff that makes some readers uncomfortable but one gets the feeling that Fleming would have enjoyed making them squirm. When taken out of context, the book's plot can certainly sound like some '50s version of the infamous racist screed, the Turner Diaries, but upon actual reading, it becomes obvious that the book -- if, at times, showing the accepted stereotypes of the time it was written (even I cringed at Fleming's attempt to write dialect), is not itself meant to be racist -- i.e., Big is a villian because he's evil and not because he's black. And for that matter, he's also a very memorable and formidible villian -- every bit the equal of such later heavyweights as Blofeld and nowhere near as pathetic as Royale's Le Chiffre. As well, Mr. Big's intricate scheme and the execution of it actually makes sense and Fleming maintains an admirable atmosphere of suspense and danger throughout the book. Fleming's style here improves on the occasional awkwardness of Royale and he gives the reader a well-paced adventure filled with memorable characters and some startlingly strong action sequences. (One need only compare this book's underwater scenes with the more languid scenes in Thunderball to see how well Fleming pulls them off.)

To go into any more detail of the plot would be unfair to the reader because most of the twists are genuine surprises (especially if one is expecting the book to be anything like the film). This is a book full of remarkably strong scenes and writing -- amongst the most vivid are the fate of Felix Leiter, the painful torture inflicted on Bond in Harlem, and Fleming's hilariously dismissive view of Florida retirees -- and it is a must read for anyone who wants to discover what made James Bond such an icon in the first place.

Excellent, with one BIGtime caveat...
So the Bond saga continues, in this the second book of the series. I'm finding Bond to much more multifaceted in the books when compared to the films...and I do love those films! His "relationship" with Solitaire is nicely done here, and the finale...if filmed the way it was written...would have been one of the more thrilling moments in cinema history.
The problem here, which will be insurmountable to many people's sensitivities, is the mid-50's pre-civil-rights attitude towards minorities. Political correctness, I feel, will one day be looked back upon by historians in nearly the same way as McCarthyism. It's an embarassing movement in American civil thought.
That being said, the tone towards Africans/Black/whatever the proper term currently antiquated to say the least, and may be offensive to many.
The novel itself is a lightning read, much like Casino Royale, and you will wish for the day that these books...not just their titles...will be made into movies.

Octopussy / The Living Daylights
Published in Audio Cassette by Penguin Books Ltd (04 April, 2002)
Authors: Ian Fleming and Rufus Sewell
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Casino Royale
Published in Audio CD by Penguin Books Ltd (03 October, 2002)
Authors: Ian Fleming and Rufus Sewell
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Java Annotated Archives
Published in Paperback by McGraw-Hill Osborne Media (17 May, 1999)
Authors: Naba Barkakati and Nabajyoti Barkakati
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J2me Complete Class Library: Programming for Mobile Devices with CDROM
Published in Paperback by McGraw-Hill Companies (2003)
Author: Guy Lotgering
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