Today's the day they release the newest James Bond. Sebastian Faulks
penned this one. In honor, I've decided to do an all James Bond blog.
Borders has a video about the book and author here
as well as a feature
of the "best" of Bond.
ABC ran an excerpt of Chaper One here
Borders also ran "10 Things You Didn't Know About James Bond and Ian Fleming." Here's their list:
1. Although James Bond is regarded by many as the quintessential English hero, he is actually half Scottish and half Swiss. He also hates that most English of drinks, tea—and describes it as "mud"!
2. Bond has had many famous incarnations on the big screen, but, prior to these, he was first played on the radio by British actor and game show host Bob Holness.
3. Bond's arch-nemesis Ernst Stavro Blofeld shares a birth date with his creator. On Her Majesty's Secret Service reveals that Blofeld was born on 28 May 1908. Ian Lancaster Fleming entered the world on the same day at 7 Green Street in London.
4. President John F. Kennedy was a big fan of the Fleming novels. He listed From Russia with Love as one of his top 10 favorite books. Bizarrely, both Kennedy and his assassin Lee Harvey Oswald are believed to have been reading Bond novels the night before Kennedy was killed.
5. Ian Fleming is also the author of the classic children's adventure Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, which he wrote for his son Caspar. When the book was adapted for the big screen, it was another very well-known children's author who co-wrote the screenplay: Roald Dahl.
6. Fleming wrote all his Bond books at Goldeneye, his Jamaican home. Although now part of a luxurious holiday resort, the house was very basic in Fleming's time—so much so that his friend and neighbour Noel Coward referred to it as Goldeneye, Nose, and Throat!
7. Although Ursula Andress wears the most famous bikini in cinema history in her iconic performance in Doctor No, in Fleming's novel her character Honeychile Rider is naked save for a knife-belt.
8. The first Bond novel, Casino Royale, originally had a different title when it was published in the US title. It was initially published here as Too Hot to Handle.
9. Breakfast is James Bond's favorite meal. He has a particular penchant for scrambled eggs, and the short story "007 in New York" even includes his own recipe for them. He also has a marked fondness for sauce béarnaise.
10. Miss Moneypenny was named after a character in an unpublished novel written by Ian Fleming's brother, the travel writer Peter Fleming.
They left out some even better ones regarding the movies. For instance, did you know that Ursula Andress and George Lazenby (who, btw, best fits Fleming's physical description of Bond) were both dubbed in their movies? Their accents were considered too hard to understand. Or that the actor who played Goldfinger in the movie of the same name spoke so little English that his costar Honor Blackman would simply wait for him to pause to speak her lines? Or that all those great ski and flying tricks were done by REAL people--no animation?
I love all things James Bond-- the movies, the books--whether written by Fleming, Gardner, Benson or now, Faulks-- I have them all. And if you're looking for a good movie set, The Ultimate James Bond is the one--it even includes the newest movie with Daniel Craig. (The only one missing is Never Say Never Again because it was done by a different studio.) The best part of this set is the special features disk that accompanies each movie. It is amazing what went into the planning, stunts, sets and the thought behind how each movie would reflect what was going on in the world at the time. I know the movies aren't representatives of the novels at all--but there is a spark of creativity there that fascinates.
Okay, that's my contribution for the day. If you'd like to comment on your favorite (or least favorite) Bond novel or movie, be my guest. I'd love to hear some thoughts.