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Re: Bond Book of the Month

Moonraker.

This has always been a favourite of Mine, I love the discription of the Moonraker and its 50's setting.
Fleming's third Bond Novel is full of his hallmarks. Fast paced story, Incredible villain and sexy Bond
girl.
   The card game is brilliantly written ( Perhaps even better than CR ? ) with Bond having to outwit Drax.
You can get a feel for Fleming's love of cars from his discription of Bond's chase after Drax.
  I still think with only a little tweaking this could be easily updated for a great film script ( Which it was
originally supposed to be ).

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

77

Re: Bond Book of the Month

The Dinner and Card Game chapters were written beautifully. Could picture the scene so vividly and having M involved so heavily really delivers.

78

Re: Bond Book of the Month

There are some superb passages in Moonraker. I love Drax's back story.  ajb007/martini

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

79

Re: Bond Book of the Month

I thoroughly enjoyed Moonraker and you can feel how Fleming's write style relaxes and improves with each successive novel. Bond is becoming a much more fleshed-out character.

My only reserve about the novel is the lack of exotic overseas locations which were a highlight of Live and Let Die and Casino Royale, and in the slightly off-stage ending ( I won't spoil it for anyone who hasn't read it) if I can call it that. But Drax and Gala Brand are both great characters and it's a great plot too.

"How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."

80

Re: Bond Book of the Month

To some of us the south coast is an exotic location.  ajb007/lol
I ahree you can read Fleming getting more comfortable
with his character of Bond. Each story getting better than the last.
Roll on Diamonds are Forever.  ajb007/martini

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

81

Re: Bond Book of the Month

Just a reminder that for October the Bond novel is Diamonds are Forever.
Forget Solo and read the original Fleming Adventures.   ajb007/lol

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

82

Re: Bond Book of the Month

Anyone else find the ending of Moonraker a bit anti-climatic and disapointing?

“The scent and smoke and sweat of a casino are nauseating at three in the morning. "
-Casino Royale, Ian Fleming

83

Re: Bond Book of the Month

James Suzuki wrote:

Anyone else find the ending of Moonraker a bit anti-climatic and disapointing?

I remember it being fine, but it's been a while...

Dalton & Connery rule. Brozz was cool. Craig is too.
#1.TLD/LTK 2.TND 3.QOS 4.DN 5.GF/GE 6.SP 7.FRWL 8.TB/TMWTGG 9.TWINE 10.YOLT

84

Re: Bond Book of the Month

chrisisall wrote:
James Suzuki wrote:

Anyone else find the ending of Moonraker a bit anti-climatic and disapointing?

I remember it being fine, but it's been a while...

I remember the Goldfinger one being pretty bad as well

“The scent and smoke and sweat of a casino are nauseating at three in the morning. "
-Casino Royale, Ian Fleming

85

Re: Bond Book of the Month

Diamonds are Forever.
Fleming's fourth novel and you can feel Fleming growing as a writer. The plot is tight and as usual the pace
is fast moving. from England Bond travels to the U.S.A to take on The Spangled Gang. As part of his pay-off
Bond spends some time at a race track, where a Jockey gets a very hard time from Wint and Kidd. This is
the only part of the Book that has some of the 50s casual racism.
    Bond contemplates Marriage, then heading off to Japan, Funny as this is what happens later in the series.
I enjoyed DAF, so far I still prefer Moonaker as it has the classic card game with Drax. The only odd thing I
though was It seemed to take Bond a long time to recognise Wint and Kidd on Board the Queen Elizabeth,as
they were described to him earlier..
    Still One of the Best Bond novels coming up for November, From Russia with Love. I'm really looking forward
to it.

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

86

Re: Bond Book of the Month

I actually started re-reading MOONRAKER before I even found this thread. How soon will the discussion of this book begin? Or have I missed it already?

Randy

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Re: Bond Book of the Month

It has been read but please feel free to post your views.  ajb007/martini

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

88

Re: Bond Book of the Month

DAF is one of my favourite Bond novels, with interesting characters and locations. Some have criticised the frequent changes of scene but that's never worried me. I'd say the book's weakest point is the lack of a typical Bond villain figure- the Spang brothers in no way measure up to Le Chiffre, Mr Big and Hugo Drax. Wint & Kidd are an improvement on their predecessors though, and Tiffany is wonderful.

89

Re: Bond Book of the Month

For anyone who Want's to this month, the Bond book is  From Russia with Love.
Thought by many to be one of his best novels.

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

90

Re: Bond Book of the Month

From Russia With Love.

Fleming's Fith Novel following on from DAF. The first third of the story concerns the Smersh plan for Bonds downfall.
Brilliant characterisation with all the main players very well written. I never see any of the actors who have played him
on screen as Bond, as I re-read the novels but could only imagine Robert Shaw as Grant.  ajb007/smile
    Fleming's descriptive passages are some of my favourites, at the Train station he describes how the steam train sounded
like a dragon breathing, eager to be off.
    Kerim Bey is a warm and friendly ally, very believable  and the warmth between him and Bond is convincing. The whole
train sequence is very well paced, the Finale is gripping and exciting a real page turner. If you've never read it before the
ending might be a bit of a suprise. Arthur Conan Doyle did something similar with one of his creations.   ajb007/wink
    So for Me at least So far I'd rank them as, ( just my opinion, from an enjoyment point of view )

1. Moonraker  2. FRWL   3. LALD    4.  DAF  5. CR

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

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Re: Bond Book of the Month

For me, From Russia, With Love is the first of the truly great Fleming novels. Fleming’s writing has moved in leaps and bounds from Diamonds Are Forever, and Bond is really fleshed out with more rich detail about his home and office life, and most importantly, his inner thoughts.

FRWL contains some of Fleming’s best writing, such as this from the introduction to Red Grant: “A blue and green dragon-fly flashed out from among the rose bushes and hovered in mid-air above the base of the man’s spine. It had been attracted by the golden shimmer of the June sunshine on the ridge of fine blond hairs above the coccyx. A puff of breeze came off the sea. The tiny field of hairs bent gently... The dragon-fly flashed away through the roses and over the jagged glass on top of the high garden wall. It might be good food, but it moved.”

The structure of the book is significantly different from previous novels (as TP notes) too, with the first third being the establishment of the plot by Smersh, before it moves on to the events as Bond becomes embroiled in the Smersh plan to discredit Bond and effectively destablilise the Western intelligence effort. Bond is at last pitted against two worthy & deadly adversaries, Rosa Klebb and Red Grant; and as TP notes, the supporting characters are great – Kerim Bey being a standout and among the best of the series, but also Kronsteen and some of the other Russian characters being fascinating too.

Bond’s introduction to Tatiana is one of the most, ahem, alluring of the novels. The train fight sequence, for me too, is riveting and written in a very filmic way (no wonder the producers could see the potential of Bond on the big screen):
“Bond, half on his back, kicked out blindly and his shoe connected; but then his foot was held and twisted and he felt himself slipping downwards... Bond’s body was being twisted and pulled down. Soon the teeth would be at him. Bond hammered out with his free leg. It made no difference. He was going.”

No wonder that President Kennedy named it one of his favourite books of the year, and it was with FRWL that the Bond phenomenon (the novels, at least) really started to take off.  ajb007/martini

"How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."

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Re: Bond Book of the Month

This is a bit late but I've just remembered that in DAF talking about T Case
and how Bond was thinking of marriage Fleming used the phrase " All the time
in the world " and retiring to Japan, which of course was what Blofeld did.

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

93

Re: Bond Book of the Month

Dr No

This Book reminds me of Moonraker in that Bond is in the one place and the story itself is a simple affair.
I've read many reviews stating that this is Flemings Homage to all the old Sax Rohmer, Fu Manchu stories
and that's pretty obvious.
  Dr No is a great villain, with metal pincers for hands and his own private island. What's not to like.  ajb007/biggrin
The film has several extra scenes which are not in the Book and In my Opinion as with Goldfinger I think
the Film slightly improves on the basic story.
  Fleming has got his writing style now and the usual beautiful discriptive pasages lead you into Bond's
world. Quarrrel  ( from LALD ) is back and Fleming writes his character as an equal to Bond and a friend,
Bond is genuinely upset  when he's killed ( I don't think that's a spoiler as I'm sure everyone has seen
the film if not read the book ).
  Honeychile 'Honey' Ryder , is an incredibly sexy creation, Bond's first vision of her is amazing. The trials
Bond has to endure really put him through it, the worst for me was the extreme heat, as you could imagine
Bond's skin burning.
    The attack on Bond in his hotel room by Centipede, is really creepy. I do think the idea of one of those settling
down around your "Man bits"  gives me a shudder, ( I don't mind spiders )
   So another Fine adventure for Bond now armed with his new gun  ajb007/wink and off to meet Mr Goldfinger.   ajb007/martini

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

94

Re: Bond Book of the Month

Just started Goldfinger  and I'm amazed how we have moved on from the 50's.
Mr Du Pont points out to Bond that Goldfinger  couldn't be Jewish as he wouldn't
be allowed in the hotel.  ajb007/rolleyes    crazy times.
    Had me thinking about  Sammy Davis, Jr, he must of confused so many red necks
They couldn't figure out what to get more angry about. Him being Black, or Jewish
or being married to a white woman.  ajb007/lol

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

95

Re: Bond Book of the Month

It's funny how by going back and reading the original Fleming novels, Many of my Opinions on all things Bond
Have changed, or at least been massaged in a slightly different direction.  ajb007/lol
   Having grown up with Roger Moore as Bond, ( I last read the books as a Teen, then the continuing novels as they
came out ). I thought I knew what Bond was supposed to be, the jokes etc.
   Now having re-read several I can see I was remembering the feel good Bonds of the 70s and not the character
that Fleming had created. So time for a 180 on many of my previous views.  ajb007/bond
    Although I always liked Daniel Craig as Bond ( didn't think he looked anything like the character but you can't have it all )
I disliked QOS, mainly for the shaky camera work and quick editing, but as many have pointed out. The editing etc does
calm down as the film moves along. So I wasn't a happy camper. ajb007/crap
  Now like a reformed smoker, I can see what many were trying to point out to me way Back then. Although I'll always think
T Dalton did a fantastic job as Bond and up to that point he was the closest to the Books than any other actor. ( Just ask
Bondtoys if you don't believe me. )  ajb007/lol
  But having immersed myself in the literary Bond now, with a Novel every Month.  I've come to the conclusion that I was wrong.
  I know I can't believe it either, Thunderpussy Wrong -  It can't be.   ajb007/lol
Craig has got the Bond of the books Down! basic fact ( Fact to me at least ), His attitude is perfect and Once again ( sorry to keep
going on about it  ajb007/biggrin  ) from reading the books, I can now understand what all concerned were trying to do with QOS. which
has steadily made its way up my list of Bond films.
   So back to Goldfinger, just up to the end of the Golf game. It's amazing how many little changes there are between the Movie
and the novel. I also think it's the first time Bond reflects on his job, Killing for Queen and Country. I know this becomes a larger
part of his character in the later Books. The tension of the Golf games is as exciting as any of the many card duels Fleming had
in his other books. Although I can see how the Film decided to cut it down and play it more tongue in cheek.
  Once again   I'd recoment to anyone if you want to know Bond, pick up the Books.  ajb007/martini  and with Kindle it's so easy now. Although
I do have several copies and sets of Bond Books I've been downloading tham every month to my phone so I can read a chapter
or two anywhere. Infact it would be great fun if you where near one of the locations to go and read that segment of the novel.  ajb007/lol

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

96

Re: Bond Book of the Month

Just had to  share this quote from Gold finger, reading the gangsters meeting. To describe
one of them Fleming writes, ....

  " He had the glazed eyes of the very rich or the dead "   Now who says Fleming didn't put
humor into his novels.   ajb007/lol

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

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Re: Bond Book of the Month

Nice one.

Dalton & Connery rule. Brozz was cool. Craig is too.
#1.TLD/LTK 2.TND 3.QOS 4.DN 5.GF/GE 6.SP 7.FRWL 8.TB/TMWTGG 9.TWINE 10.YOLT

98

Re: Bond Book of the Month

Goldfinger :

Goldfinger was published in 1959 and was originally titled The richest man in the world.  The novel sees Bond finishing a job
and brooding over his career, for the first time he seems to brood over how he has to kill,  How a body can be full of life and
possibilities one minute and a sack of lifeless tissue and bones the next. He expresses the view he doesn't revel in death but
takes a pride in doing it well.
    Catching Goldfinger cheating at cards is pretty much as the film shows, only Bond has a longer relationship with Jill Masterson,
and doesn't find out till much later in the book what has happened to her.
   Bond has the famous Golf match, outwitting Goldfinger, then following him to his Factory in  Switzerland, where he meets up
wtith Tilly, who is out for revenge. They get captured and Fleming sets up a brilliant torture scene.
    This is One part of the Book where I think the film improves on, Having Goldfinger get Bond and the girl to work for him, just
doesn't seem to ring true ( for me at least, Goldfinger should've just shot both of them and moved on ). In the film Goldfinger
keeps Bond close simply to because he needs him to keep the secret service at bay.
     Moving to America, the Gansters meeting is very well written, I love Fleming's discriptive passages, he can build such a good
visual picture in your mind.
    IMHO the attack on Ft Knox seems a little rushed, I'd have loved to read a little more of Bond running through the throng
dispensing justice to a few more villains.  Some might have been suprised that Tilly fancies Pussy ( In many ways ). and meets
her end looking for her, and isn't interested in Bond himself.
     Fleming gives us a final act with Bond being kidnapped and taken By Goldfinger on his hijacked aircraft. Here Both Oddjob
and Goldfinger  ( Infact everyone on Bord dies except Pussy and Bond ) Die at Bond's hands.
  Now we have another little plot point that I think is either under written, or seems a little rushed for My liking. Pussy seems
to fall for 007  very quickly.
    Goldfinger is a great Bond adventure, Bond himself is a little more complex and rounded as a character. The plot is as always
with Fleming some fantastic boy's own adventure with the sheer audacity of Goldfingers scheme. Oddjob is a menacing  Henchman
( with a liking for cats ).
     I'd love to read others opinions and views on Goldfinger or indeed any of the Bonds so far. It's amazing to think we're halfway
Through the Fleming Novels.
    I like to think of all Goldfingers Gold sitting there on the sea Bed waiting, for a Smersh team to salvage it, Only to be hindered
by a certain British agent.  ajb007/lol

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

99

Re: Bond Book of the Month

For anyone wanting a good read this month it's the turn of For Your Eyes Only.  ajb007/martini

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

100

Re: Bond Book of the Month

Ah, FYEO: Fleming's opportunity to convert some unused TV scripts into excellent short stories, and to experiment a bit with his writing (QoS). Also a godsend for Broccoli and his team once they'd run out of novels!