The Spy Who Loved Me (James Bond 007) Paperback – 4 Apr 2002
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"I felt the prod of a gun in my back but swung the door wide open ... I had gambled that they wouldn't shoot. They hadn't. Now all depended on the solitary man who stood on the threshold." When James Bond makes his first appearance in The Spy Who Loved Me, the novel is two thirds complete. It is Fleming's most experimental Bond story but one of his most successful, developing characters with a new fullness and constructing an adventure which builds momentum through a series of genuinely thrilling crescendos. We may see comparatively little of Bond himself here but The Spy Who Loved Me reveals more of the man than ever before.
This is the story of Vivienne Michel, a Bond Girl with a difference, whose first-person narration moves through three sections: "Me", describing her childhood, unhappiness and disastrous love affairs; "Them", in which she escapes the past only to find herself caught up in a life-threatening insurance job at the Dreamy Pines Motel Court; and "Him", where Bond enters and the story moves rapidly towards its resolution. There's a mythical quality to James Bond's appearance and disappearance from the action, but Fleming explores his character with great realism, enjoying the freedom to observe his hero objectively.
In many ways this is barely a Bond story at all--the book is firmly in Fleming's gangster tradition and Bond is not even on a mission, just stepping by chance into someone else's nightmare--but The Spy Who Loved Me is nonetheless one of the most exciting and skilful additions to the 007 canon. --Iain Campbell --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Ian Fleming keeps you riveted. His narrative pulls with the smooth power of Bond’s Thunderbird" (Sunday Telegraph)
"Vivian Michel is far the most attractive of Bond’s heroines to date" (Sunday Times)
"Imaginative and revealing... frightening... Fleming has succeeded in creating a true sense of terror... the most escapist fantasy of the series" (Raymond Benson) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
I already owned Casino Royal read by Dan Stevens, and Diamonds Are Forever read by Daimian Lewis in the same 007 Reloaded series from AudioGo, so it was an obvious choice to buy this one read by the actress who had played Miranda Frost in the film Die Another Day.
The film The Spy Who Loved Me bears no relation to the book, other than the title. Rather than beginning with Bond, this original story starts with a fascinating depiction of a young Canadian woman's recent experiences in London and the road trip she takes across America. This leads her to the Dreamy Pines Motor Court and into the clutches of two extremely sinister gangsters. Fleming treats us to the girl's intimate thoughts and feelings, and provides a fascinating depiction of American motels in the fifties. A thrilling story: exciting, sensuous and full of danger.
I enjoyed Ms Pike's reading much more than the other stories in this series read by male actors. She plays all the characters with skill and variety. Ms Pike is very accomplished and reads with great feeling and panache. Her comments at the end of the recording on her personal response to the story are both insightful and reflective.
Worth every penny - the best of Bond on CD!
Having set the scene, the main excitement in this book comes from Vivienne's encounter with two hoodlums who arrive at the motel she is minding. This section of the book is full of menace and her fate seems sealed until 007 arrives. I find Bond a curious character in Fleming's novels and he is effectively nothing like his portrayal in any of the films. "TSWLM" has the feel of a black and white "B" movie from the 1950's and the low-key nature of the story seems wholly credible until Bond's arrival. If there is a fault, Bond does seem the least credible of all the principle characters in this novel. For me, he is the weak link in this story. The account of his secret operation in Toronto seems ridiculous after the realistic violence that has occurred in the previous pages and there is absolutely no logic for his recounting this escapade to Viv.Read more ›
His usual savour faire carries the day and his arrival acts as the catalyst for a story which rapidly develops into the dramatic action finish the build up deserved.
Very different, but enjoyable stuff.
THis is my favourite of all the Bond novels. most of them i found okay reads, but didnt really understand what the fuss was all about. the films are far superior, usually.
But this one just blew me away. Fleming deviates from his formula, and writes the best novel of his career. UNfortunately, it is also the shortest.
The characters here are great, the two killers chiiling. Bond takes on a mythical quality (as a previous reviewer said) in the way he seems to come and go, rather in the manner of a fairy godmother. (although he himself would probably hate ever being assosciated with that phrase!)
The plot of this one is nicely simple, easy to get to grips with, and the writing is very good. I enjoyed this book most out of all the Bond i've read (i.e. all of them). This is a very, very, good, novel.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Remember reading this in my teens. Different to all the other Bond books as the action is played out all over one night. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
It took me a little while to get into this book, because Bond doesn’t actually make an appearance until a third of the way through it, but by the end of the novel, it did make... Read morePublished 2 months ago by SocialBookshelves.com
i really didn't enjoy this...... i'm not a massive james bond fan though, but this particularly had next to no plot!Published 7 months ago by Jemma roe
Bought as a gift for my son who is working his way through all the Bond novels. I read them when I was fourteen.Published 8 months ago by Kef Morgan