If you are used to the James Bond of the movies- this James Bond may come as a bit of a surprise - We see him as a bored bureaucrat on a thankless job, as a bit of a snob, as a hothead turned on by a woman overtaking him, as a loner trying to come to terms with - perish forbid - matrimony!
We follow him as he impersonates a Scottish peer, trying to act as a heraldry expert- We see him struggle to maintain his cover when a colleague is killed in front of him -We also see him meet Sable Basilisk and Griffon Orr Pursuivant, and discover his family motto - "the world is not enough" -
and his crest(3 bezants (balls)-"I am sure that is a valuable bonus")
We meet his prospective father in law, an uncommon criminal with the name of an angel - we follow him through his bloody and desperate ski ride through the Swiss alps- and we are there with him at the end of the book - where Bond takes the girl in his arms and says that they have all the time in the world.
Its not a book with a clean ending - its more like a significant chapter of the James Bond file - The most devastating personally - but as far as saving the world or Britain is concerned, the operation is done "offscreen" so to speak.
And the ending is surely one of the best of all thriller endings.
Riveting stuff- the most gadgety movie can't come near this stuff.
They dont make books or heroes like that anymore...