Bond Book of the Month

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  • DutchfingerDutchfinger Holland With LovePosts: 1,240MI6 Agent
    What a great thread, props to Thunderpussy! Quite a coincidence as well, as I've recently got the Fleming audio books, and I've finished listening to Casino Royale and am currently listening to Live and Let Die. I am planning to go through all of them and this gives me an even bigger excuse to do so! I have also read some of the novels (In Dutch), but I must say listening to them makes for quite an enjoyable expierence as well!

    I only just found out about this thread, and would like to share my two cents on Casino Royale first, even though that was the book from the month of july, I hope you don't mind!

    First of all, quick little word on the audio book, it was readed out by Robert Whitfield, who was a joy to listen to! From Mathis' French accent, Leiters American accent to the SMERSH agent's Russian accent, it was all top notch! Vespers voice understandably sounded a bit weird coming from a male reader, but nothing your inmagination can't fix.

    In contrast to my fair amount of knowledge on the movies, I am a bit of a rookie on the novels as I haven't gone through all of them yet. But so far I do feel Casino Royale is one of my favorites and I think it's definitely a great start to the series. One of the things I think is so intresting is to see how Bond thinks and acts, you can definitely tell that this novell was written by a man, and it was also written for men. Examples are the ways Bond feels about women. "Being good for recreation" and "Shouldn't be mixing into a man's job". Another example is near the end, when Bond didn't want to see Vesper yet untill he had recovered more from the torture, because he wanted to see if his 'manhood' still worked the way it should. For some reason I felt you'd had to be a man to understand this psychological struggle. The way Bond looks at women only made his feelings about Vesper seem that much more deeper in my oppinion, he is after all a cold hearted man who doesn't fall in love easily. He completely loses his heart to Vesper to the point he wants to marry her, and in my own interpertation there must have definitely been a lot of pain in his heart when he coldly replied with the "The Bitch is dead" line. All the puzzle pieces fitted together well when it turned out she was working for the opposition all along. Very well written if you ask me.

    The whole mission itself was really intresting, no matter how outragious it might sound to send Bond out to a casino to try and bankrubt a dangerious man assossiated with SMERSH, it seemed like a very realistic spy story, and I was hooked throughout the whole thing. The Baccarat game itself was very well, full of tense moments. Same hold for the whole torture bit.

    I also thought it was intresting how Bond thought about resigning after the torture, and started to philosophize about 'pure good' and 'pure evil' and how it's unclear to see what true villians are. Mathis seemed to be even wiser and completely made James arguments seem invalid, that all nicely seemed to setup reasons for Bond to go after the people from SMERSH in future adventures.

    I'm sure there was a lot more stuff I wanted to mention. But bottom line: a solid and enjoyable read! Haven't got much negative stuff to say about it. I will share my oppinions on Live and Let Die soon as well, as that is the book of this month.
    Better known as DutchBondFan on YouTube. My 007 movie reviews: Recapping 007
    YouTube channel Support my channel on Patreon Twitter Facebook fanpage
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    All views are needed, ( and probably more thought out than mine ). :D

    I was in a similar position Dutchfinger, in that I have a good knowledge of the films but it had been so long
    since I'd read the Fleming Books, I'd always said I'd re-read them but never got round to it. So I though this
    thread would be a great excuse for me and others to read the Books again and in Order. Whether as a Newbie
    to the novels or like me a returning reader from years ago. :)
    Roll on September and Moonraker, One of my Favourites. -{

    Although I'll have to work in a quick read of Solo, the new novel as well.
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    Just a Bump to let everyone know Moonraker is the Book for September.
    This is one of my Favourites. Picking up on the publics worries about
    nuclear weapons in the 50's.
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • DutchfingerDutchfinger Holland With LovePosts: 1,240MI6 Agent
    It's the last day of august, and I still have yet to share my thoughts on Live and Let Die. I shared most of my thoughts on Casino Royale all in one single long post. I think that worked fine for me, So now I am going to attempt to do that again for the second book. So here we go again!:

    The first couple of times I read Live and Let Die, I thought of it as a weaker novell than Casino Royale, though that might have something to do with Casino Royale featuring Bond's first real love, first impression of SMERSH and just having a very powerfull plot. (IMO) This time I have listened to Live and Let Die's audio book, and it picked up a lot better on me! I would still have to admit that I probably preffer Casino Royale over Live and Let Die, but Live and Let Die is a lot more action packed and feels a lot longer. If both these books were adapted into movies (yes they are, but I mean exactly the way they are done in the novells.) then Live and Let Die would have had a much higher budget. (I say that just to make clear there's a lot more different locations and action in this one.)

    The reason I thought this book was a weaker addition at first, is probably because of the whole voodoo theme and racist features this book has. Neither in the movie, nor the books am I intrested in voodoo much. It just feels a whole lot less 'cold war/ spy era' like. But since Bond is just as sceptical about the voodoo as I am, and since the book doesn't really get into the super nateral in any way, it does work fine and I rather enjoyed it all this time! The voodoo is actually used in a clever way, as a shield of fear to protect Mr. Big. Most of his followers actually think he's a living corpse; a zombie, and this gives Mr. Big that extremely powerful Bond villian quality! And he's linked to SMERSH, and since we already caught a glimpse of quite how powerful the SMERSH organisation is in the previous book, this all makes Mr. Big a very menacing and intresting villian indeed!

    Speaking of Mr. Big, when picturing him in my mind this time, for some reason I didn't picture Yaphet Kotto as Mr. Big like in the movie adaption. For some reason, my brain decided to go with a version that looked more like Barry Shabaka Henley!

    Mr_Big.jpg

    I liked his twist of being an extreme perfectionist. He wanted to do everything in the most ingenious way possible. Simply because he's 'bored'. I'm not an expert on this yet, but I think this is a typical "Fleming writing' quality. Very clever! You always have the feeling Mr. Big's power stretches to where ever Bond goes, and that Bond is in true danger. It is already shown in the beginning when a Bomb is delivered to his hotel room, when Bond's finger is broken by Teehee, or when his men are spying on him in the train and later assault his room in the train. All the black people in Harlem and all arround the east coast seem to be connected to Mr. Big and they are all able to communicate fast. This man means business!

    I also liked that there were a lot of elements in this book that were later adapted into my favorite Bond movie: Licence To Kill. Felix Leiter being fed to the sharks and even losing and arm and a leg! With the note: "He disagreed with something that ate him. and of course Bond snooping arround at the fish warehouse to find the smuggled coins in one of the sharks tanks and it ending in a gunfight. Of course there was also the part where Bond and Solitaire were dragged through a coral reef, that was later seen in For Your Eyes Only. All very enjoyable!

    The characters were very all very well written, Solitaire was very intresting and mysterious. And there was some really nice bonding with Felix Leiter and also a bit with Quarrel! The whole scuba diving part was very intresting with a thrilling fight with the octopuss! It's cool to be able to see what Bond is thinking about through these parts. That exactly what I like so much about the novels in the first place, we are able to expierence all of Bond thoughts, you get to see how smart, cunning and sometimes scared he is. In the movies a lot of this is left to our imagination.

    The book had a great climax, and Mr. Big atleast died a LOT more realisticly than he did in the movie... (Though I'm sure that whatever death Fleming would have thought of, it would have always been more realistic.)

    So once again, I had mostly positive things to say about this movie. I do feel like this book started off a bit more slow and boring, in Casino Royale I immediatly felt engaged in the story and this one took a while to pick up. It didn't really get intresting untill the bomb first arrived in Bond's hotel room. It took me a while to get involved with the story surrounding smuggled coins and voodoo, but once Bond and Leiter go out and investigate in Harlem, things get really intresting! And the book keeps getting better from there on in. So another great read (or listen) and I'm glad I enjoyed this one a lot more this time arround, I really recommend the audio books!

    I'm looking forward to Moonraker, I remember reading that one very vividly and liking it very much. I'm curious to see what that audio book will be like!

    So far my ranking would be:

    1. Casino Royale
    2. Live and Let Die
    Better known as DutchBondFan on YouTube. My 007 movie reviews: Recapping 007
    YouTube channel Support my channel on Patreon Twitter Facebook fanpage
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    -{ Great review, Dutchfinger. For me LALD was a bigger story and more interesting than CR.
    so for me at least it would be the opposite of your listing.
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • BlackleiterBlackleiter Washington, DCPosts: 5,604MI6 Agent
    I have to confess, folks - I'm having a really tough time getting through LALD. I decided to go the audiobook route and I'm on the 4th of 6 disks. Although the story is intriguing and Fleming's descriptive writing is as vivid as ever, the racism is getting a bit hard to take. Every time I feel myself really getting into the story, the "N word" is tossed in or another disparaging remark is made about Black people. I realize the book was written in the 50s and attitudes about race had not evolved to the point they are now, but to be honest that is of little comfort to me as a Black man listening to Fleming's tale. I think I owe it to myself as a Bond fan to solder on and finish the book, but I have to say I'm not enjoying it much.
    "Felix Leiter, a brother from Langley."
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    I think everyone can understand BL, It would be bad enough to read some of the racist passages,
    let alone have to listen to them. Although as mentioned by Others it was a long time ago, and in a
    way shows how racist the times were then and indeed have only changed very slowly. Infact in some
    parts I'm sure it's still as racist as ever. Still I hope you do finish it and give your review on it.
    It does seem an odd coincidence that in the month that celebrated the 50th anniversary of the
    "I have a Dream " speech by Martin Luther King, we're reading a book showing the casual racism of
    the 1950's.
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • DutchfingerDutchfinger Holland With LovePosts: 1,240MI6 Agent
    -{ Great review, Dutchfinger. For me LALD was a bigger story and more interesting than CR.
    so for me at least it would be the opposite of your listing.

    I can see where you're coming from, apart from some awful racist features and a slow paced start, the story got really thrilling and I would also call it a bigger story than CR myself. Two great James Bond tales so far!:) - Just preffered Casino Royale to this one, but I guess that's what makes your thread so much fun!
    I have to confess, folks - I'm having a really tough time getting through LALD. I decided to go the audiobook route and I'm on the 4th of 6 disks. Although the story is intriguing and Fleming's descriptive writing is as vivid as ever, the racism is getting a bit hard to take. Every time I feel myself really getting into the story, the "N word" is tossed in or another disparaging remark is made about Black people. I realize the book was written in the 50s and attitudes about race had not evolved to the point they are now, but to be honest that is of little comfort to me as a Black man listening to Fleming's tale. I think I owe it to myself as a Bond fan to solder on and finish the book, but I have to say I'm not enjoying it much.

    I completely understand BL, like I mentioned in my review above, I enjoyed it a bit less because of the racist features the book has. It didn't age well. I'm glad atleast Quarrel shows up as a good black (jamaican) man, to kind of compensate. I think back in those days the "N" word was an accepted regular word or something? I agree there were plenty of cringe worthy horrible racists bits... I do hope you will enjoy the rest of the story without being offended to much, the scuba diving was really thrilling and well written and of course a lot of other positive stuff that I mentioned above.

    But I guess we're on the same page that Casino Royale was the better book so far!
    Better known as DutchBondFan on YouTube. My 007 movie reviews: Recapping 007
    YouTube channel Support my channel on Patreon Twitter Facebook fanpage
  • BlackleiterBlackleiter Washington, DCPosts: 5,604MI6 Agent
    I think everyone can understand BL, It would be bad enough to read some of the racist passages,
    let alone have to listen to them. Although as mentioned by Others it was a long time ago, and in a
    way shows how racist the times were then and indeed have only changed very slowly. Infact in some
    parts I'm sure it's still as racist as ever. Still I hope you do finish it and give your review on it.
    It does seem an odd coincidence that in the month that celebrated the 50th anniversary of the
    "I have a Dream " speech by Martin Luther King, we're reading a book showing the casual racism of
    the 1950's.

    I appreciate your understanding, TP, and I do intend to finish the book. By the way, the odd coincidence you pointed out hadn't even occurred to me. Ironic indeed!
    "Felix Leiter, a brother from Langley."
  • BlackleiterBlackleiter Washington, DCPosts: 5,604MI6 Agent
    -{ Great review, Dutchfinger. For me LALD was a bigger story and more interesting than CR.
    so for me at least it would be the opposite of your listing.

    I can see where you're coming from, apart from some awful racist features and a slow paced start, the story got really thrilling and I would also call it a bigger story than CR myself. Two great James Bond tales so far!:) - Just preffered Casino Royale to this one, but I guess that's what makes your thread so much fun!
    I have to confess, folks - I'm having a really tough time getting through LALD. I decided to go the audiobook route and I'm on the 4th of 6 disks. Although the story is intriguing and Fleming's descriptive writing is as vivid as ever, the racism is getting a bit hard to take. Every time I feel myself really getting into the story, the "N word" is tossed in or another disparaging remark is made about Black people. I realize the book was written in the 50s and attitudes about race had not evolved to the point they are now, but to be honest that is of little comfort to me as a Black man listening to Fleming's tale. I think I owe it to myself as a Bond fan to solder on and finish the book, but I have to say I'm not enjoying it much.

    I completely understand BL, like I mentioned in my review above, I enjoyed it a bit less because of the racist features the book has. It didn't age well. I'm glad atleast Quarrel shows up as a good black (jamaican) man, to kind of compensate. I think back in those days the "N" word was an accepted regular word or something? I agree there were plenty of cringe worthy horrible racists bits... I do hope you will enjoy the rest of the story without being offended to much, the scuba diving was really thrilling and well written and of course a lot of other positive stuff that I mentioned above.

    But I guess we're on the same page that Casino Royale was the better book so far!

    Thanks, Dutchfinger. I will try to enjoy the book as much as I can because there are other aspects of the story that I find quite intriguing. But you are correct with respect to you and I being on the same page - so far Casino Royale appears to be the better book.
    "Felix Leiter, a brother from Langley."
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    Dutchfinger wrote ;
    Just preffered Casino Royale to this one, but I guess that's what makes your thread so much fun!

    It's not my Thread, rather my Legacy to the world ! :))
    ( Unless it somehow starts to make Money, Then it is MY thread ) :v
    the scuba diving was really thrilling and well written

    Agreed it was Brilliant, Plenty of detail and very atmospheric -{

    It's at times like this I wish Some real experts like, Richard-W or Silhouette Man
    could pop in and Tell us all where we're going wrong
    with our reviews. :))
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • BlackleiterBlackleiter Washington, DCPosts: 5,604MI6 Agent
    Dutchfinger wrote ;
    Just preffered Casino Royale to this one, but I guess that's what makes your thread so much fun!

    It's not my Thread, rather my Legacy to the world ! :))
    ( Unless it somehow starts to make Money, Then it is MY thread ) :v
    the scuba diving was really thrilling and well written

    Agreed it was Brilliant, Plenty of detail and very atmospheric -{

    It's at times like this I wish Some real experts like, Richard-W or Silhouette Man
    could pop in and Tell us all where we're going wrong
    with our reviews. :))

    Careful what you wish for, my friend! :))
    "Felix Leiter, a brother from Langley."
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    :)) It must be like calling up the Devil, I see one has poped back with a bit of Craig bashing. :))
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • BlackleiterBlackleiter Washington, DCPosts: 5,604MI6 Agent
    :)) It must be like calling up the Devil, I see one has poped back with a bit of Craig bashing. :))

    Yep! See what you did?!!! :))
    "Felix Leiter, a brother from Langley."
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    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've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • MooseWithFleasMooseWithFleas Philadelphia, PAPosts: 753MI6 Agent
    The Dinner and Card Game chapters were written beautifully. Could picture the scene so vividly and having M involved so heavily really delivers.
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    There are some superb passages in Moonraker. I love Drax's back story. -{
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • Charmed & DangerousCharmed & Dangerous Posts: 7,218MI6 Agent
    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."
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    To some of us the south coast is an exotic location. :))
    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. -{
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    Just a reminder that for October the Bond novel is Diamonds are Forever.
    Forget Solo and read the original Fleming Adventures. :))
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • James SuzukiJames Suzuki New ZealandPosts: 2,388MI6 Agent
    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
  • chrisisallchrisisall Western Mass, USAPosts: 9,043MI6 Agent
    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.GF 5.DN/GE 6.SP 7.FRWL 8.TB/TMWTGG 9.TWINE 10.YOLT
  • James SuzukiJames Suzuki New ZealandPosts: 2,388MI6 Agent
    chrisisall 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
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    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've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • RWIG45RWIG45 Posts: 39MI6 Agent
    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
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    It has been read but please feel free to post your views. -{
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 31,526Chief of Staff
    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.
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    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've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,697MI6 Agent
    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. :)
    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. ;)
    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've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • Charmed & DangerousCharmed & Dangerous Posts: 7,218MI6 Agent
    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. -{
    "How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."
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