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Thunderball [Paperback]

Ian Fleming
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)

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Book Description

26 Oct 2006
When a stranger arrives in the Bahamas, the locals barely turn their heads, seeing another ex-pat with money to burn at the casino tables. But James Bond has more than money on his mind; he’s got less than a week to find two stolen atom bombs hidden among the coral reefs. While acting the playboy, Bond meets Domino, sultry plaything of secretive treasure hunter Emilio Largo. In getting close to this Italian vixen, Bond hopes to learn more about Largo’s hidden operation …

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Thunderball + The Spy Who Loved Me: James Bond 007 (Vintage Classics) + On Her Majesty's Secret Service: James Bond 007 (Vintage Classics)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; New Ed edition (26 Oct 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141028289
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141028286
  • Product Dimensions: 2.1 x 11.1 x 18.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 691,990 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Ian Fleming was born in 1908 and educated at Eton. After a brief period at the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, he went abroad to further his education. In 1931, having failed to get an appointment in the Foreign Office, he joined Reuters News Agency. During the Second World War, he was personal assistant to the Director of Naval Intelligence at the Admiralty, rising to the rank of Commander. His wartime experiences provided him with a first-hand knowledge of secret operations.

After the war he became Foreign Manager of Kemsley Newspapers. He built his house, Goldeneye, in Jamaica and there at the age of forty-four he wrote Casino Royale, the first of his novels featuring Commander James Bond. By the time of his death in 1964, the James Bond adventures had sold more than forty million copies. Dr No, starring Sean Connery, was released in 1962 and the Bond films continue to be huge international successes. He is also the author of the magical children's book Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

The novels of Ian Fleming were immediately recognised as classic thrillers by his contemporaries Kingsley Amis, Raymond Chandler and John Betjeman. With the invention of James Bond, Ian Fleming created the greatest British fictional icon of the late twentieth century.

(The picture is reproduced with the permission of the copyright owners, Ian Fleming Publications Limited and the Ian Fleming Will Trust)

Product Description


"A thriller, a chiller and a pleasure to read " (New York Times) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Book Description

There is only one Bond. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
It was one of those days when it seemed to James Bond that all life, as someone put it, was nothing but a heap of six to four against. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One Of Ian Fleming's Best 28 April 2004
Thunderball was the 9th James Bond book by Ian Fleming and it is one ofhis best 007 books.
The story sees secret agent James Bond 007 being sent to try and recovertwo atomic bombs that have been hijacked by the terrorist organisationSPECTRE, lead by their ruthless leader Ernst Stavro Blofeld, who has giventhe UK government 7 days to pay SPECTRE a ransom of £100,000,000 or thebombs will be detonated in two unspecified but high profile locations inthe US or UK. Whilst investigating in the Bahamas 007 meets Domino Petachia girl who is the lover of a millionaire explorer Emilio Largo who is inthe Bahamas with a group of businessmen with the intention of treasurehunting from his luxury yacht the Disco Volante. Bond becomes suspiciousof Largo and is convinced that Largo has stolen the bombs and is stowingthem on board his yacht and is using the treasure hunt as a cover to avoidarousing suspicion, but trying to convince the government and 007's boss"M" that there is a case for action proves difficult so Bond and CIA agentFelix Leiter must use their own with and recover the bombs before timeruns out.
This book sets a very fast pace early on and is a very engaging novelwhich leaves you wanting to turn to the next page quickly and it is a verysharp piece of work by one of the best thriller writers in history.
If, like me, you have seen the 1967 film version of this book it will helpyou to understand the plot and create a better picture in your mind of thestory that is taking place.
Even if you are not a Bond fan but enjoy a good thriller novel then thisis definitely worth a read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Jim J-R
Of all the James Bond books, this one feels the most cinematic, though I do wonder whether my knowledge that the novel is based on an idea for a film influences me in feeling this. When two British atomic weapons go missing, M puts everyone on alert, and sends Bond on a mission to the Bahamas to track them down.

Thunderball seems to be different from the earlier books. Bond feels slightly less rough around the edges - he's mellowed perhaps? His over-opinionated ways are much lessened, and he comes across even as slightly vulnerable. The other characters are the opposite. Whereas before there was in depth background about Goldfinger, Rosa Klebb, Dr No and so on, in this book Largo seems to be nothing more than a puppet. Blofeld gets the rich detailed treatment in an early chapter, but is promptly ignored from then on, making Bond's battle with Largo feel rather perfunctory and impersonal.

The detail of the settings is also sparser than before. In earlier books the reader is treated to long descriptions about the different winds, visits to Harlem, casinos, cars and so on, all of which are missing from this book. Instead, the focus seems to be on action and actual investigation - it would be fair to say this is almost the first novel in which Bond has actually had to do some proper spying. It is written as if for the screen and not the page.

I would go as far as to say that the opening is probably my favourite section of the book. This is the part in which Bond is himself and has his usual foibles. It's the part that gives Blofeld such a brilliant background - setting up an ambitious idea on Fleming's part to have an enemy that could feature in several novels.

Overall though I'm afraid I didn't find it to be at the better end of the series, lacking the unique elements that characterise Bond's earlier outings. It's certainly not bad though, just perhaps more in line with a run-of-the-mill thriller.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent start to the SPECTRE trilogy 2 Jun 2001
By A Customer
Having read all but the 3 SPECTRE novels I began this book with high expectations. I was not disappointed. The book holds a fantastic storyline; SPECTRE have highjacked two nuclear warheads and have threatened to use them if a huge ransom is not paid. Every agent in the western hemisphere is put on the job of finding these misiles. James Bond, having just returned from two weeks in at health club, is stationed in the Bahamas, the last place the missiles are expected to be... This book bursts with high-octane suspense and action towards the end. It has all the usual excessories: The location, the villain, the beautiful girl. It has it all!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fleming at his best! 1 April 2000
By A Customer
This is not one of the best Bond-books... this is the best! I own my copy about ten years; i did read it four times in this period. I love all Bond-novels by Ian Fleming, but this one has to be the number one for me. The story is so fast... when you start reading it, you won't stop! The storyline is very credible. The end is perfect. Much better then both of the two movies ('Thunderball' & 'Never say never again'). A-must-read!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Bond's ninth outing. 28 Aug 2014
By Bridgey
Ian Fleming's 9th Bond novel, and interestingly the one that I feel the film scriptwriters altered the least for big screen, although I am sure I read somewhere that it was written with a film in mind and that is how there came to be some infighting in the Bond camp over the film rights.

What starts as an order to attend a health farm by M, soon escalates into the search for missing atomic bombs and a ransom for $100,000,000. We are introduced to the mastermind Ernst Stavros Blofeld and the terrorist group SPECTRE..

As usual for a Bond book it contains plenty of action, beautiful women and a cleverly written plot. But for me, and it seems as if I am alone in this, it just didn't live up the previous novels (with the exception of Casino Royale which I didn't like). There just wasn't enough Bond in the book and too much time going into other characters backgrounds, especially those that would be killed of in as many pages as it took to introduce them. I did enjoy the book and Blofeld is an amazingly written baddy, even if most of the coverage is given to Largo.

All in all not a bad weapon in the Bond arsenal, just not the best.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars I like it
not the best James Bond story but quite good.
Published 1 month ago by michael bolland
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Another superb Bond thriller which tells us much about underwater life
Published 2 months ago by Michael Barley
4.0 out of 5 stars Bond at his most credible
Having worked my way through about 70% of the Bind novels, "Thunderball" is probably the one that most closely follows the plot of the film. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Ian Thumwood
4.0 out of 5 stars THUDERBALL
Published 4 months ago by EZ21491660
4.0 out of 5 stars Thunderball - James Bond Number 9 Introduces Blofeld and SPECTRE
James Bond returns to form after the latest outings in Goldfinger and For Your Eyes Only.

SMERSH has been dismantled by Nikita Khruschev and now a new organisation has... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Tigerclaw
5.0 out of 5 stars Bond
I love it and that's why I chose to by the book as I already have the dvd. I am intereted in seeing what differences there might be.
Published 7 months ago by Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
Great value for money fast delivery
a book I woul read over and over again
I would recommend it to friends
Published 8 months ago by colin jeary
5.0 out of 5 stars James Bond: Thunderball
This is the ninth James bond book and is one of my favourite's as well as Dr.No & Live & Let Die, In this book the leader of SPECTRE under the command of Enrst Stravo Blofeld steal... Read more
Published 9 months ago by MR C.Robinson
5.0 out of 5 stars Briliant!
My husband travels regularly to London and beyond - audio books are perfect for him during the journey - and he is a Bond fan which makes this series of titles perfect :)
Published 9 months ago by Ms. A. Heywood
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic!
Fleming at his best - simple plot, but brilliantly presented. The attention to detail is excellent and typical of the early Bond stories.
Published 11 months ago by A D NAISBITT
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