Scenes in the James Bond Novels that make you squeamish?

DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
edited April 2016 in Literary 007 Posts: 14,724
After the success of this thread when it focused on the scenes and moments in the James Bond film series that made you feel squeamish I thought that it was high time that I created one for the James Bond novels.

For me, personally, there's nothing really that stands out from the original Ian Fleming James Bond novels as reading matter that would make me squeamish. The carpet-beater torture from Casino Royale is a good one but I find it described in a kind of 1950s censored "less is more" tone (that I think actually went over my head when I was younger). Mr Big being eaten by the shark in Live and Let Die is also a good scene but again it doesn't make me squeamish.

No, for me the scene in the Bond novels that makes me most squeamish is actually in one of the Continuation novels (which are fair game in this thread by the way). It concerns the repeated stabbing in the chest by James Bond of a guard/sailor on The Altair boat in Kingsley Amis' Colonel Sun (1968). I recall reading this for the first time on top of my bed. I had to get up and move about just to read this wantonly violent passage. It was really difficult for me to read so I put that scene down as one that really did make me squeamish. No doubt there were some others, but nothing else in the literary Bond affected me as much as did reading that one scene for the first time.

So, I've shared my scene from the Bond novels that really made me squeamish - now I'd love to hear yours! :)

Comments

  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy My Secret Lair
    Posts: 13,384
    For me it has to be the centipede section of Dr No, even thinking
    about it, creeps me out. I think that helps to show just how good
    a writer Fleming was.
  • mcdonbbmcdonbb deep in the Heart of Texas
    Posts: 4,116
    I forgot about that scene in Colonel Sun but I guess the torture of Bond in the same novel or more accurately the thought of the torture of Bond described in Colonel Sun is a bit unnerving.

    Makes my nose itch.
  • Last_Rat_StandingLast_Rat_Standing South Florida
    Posts: 3,784
    The death of Goodnight in TMWTGG
  • LeonardPineLeonardPine The Bar on the Beach
    Posts: 3,419
    There's a nasty scene in one of the Gardner books (Can't remember which one i 'm not a big fan) where Bond kills a traitorous female by kneeing her in the small of her back, breaking her spine.

    I thought that was well over the top nasty!
  • DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
    Posts: 14,724
    Thanks for all of those interesting choices so far.

    Does anyone else want to add to them?

    If so, I'd really love to hear from you!
  • Posts: 37
    The entire Bond canon, post-Amis, makes me squeamish.
  • DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
    Posts: 14,724
    Shamelady wrote: »
    The entire Bond canon, post-Amis, makes me squeamish.

    Not what I had in mind of course, but I know what you mean by that even though I can't say that I agree with that judgement. I was thinking more of specific scenes from the Bond novels and the continuations that make you feel squeamish but I'm sure you knew that.

  • Posts: 306
    Live and Let Dies torture scene with breaking Bond's fingers. Fleming has a way with words.
  • LeonardPineLeonardPine The Bar on the Beach
    Posts: 3,419
    Gettler wrote: »
    Live and Let Dies torture scene with breaking Bond's fingers. Fleming has a way with words.

    That's such a well written scene!

  • DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
    Posts: 14,724
    Gettler wrote: »
    Live and Let Dies torture scene with breaking Bond's fingers. Fleming has a way with words.

    Yes, that is quite an unsettling one!

  • Posts: 37
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    Shamelady wrote: »
    The entire Bond canon, post-Amis, makes me squeamish.

    Not what I had in mind of course, but I know what you mean by that even though I can't say that I agree with that judgement. I was thinking more of specific scenes from the Bond novels and the continuations that make you feel squeamish but I'm sure you knew that.

    Sorry. I wasn't trying to hijack the thread -- just trying to be a wiseass.
  • DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
    Posts: 14,724
    Shamelady wrote: »
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    Shamelady wrote: »
    The entire Bond canon, post-Amis, makes me squeamish.

    Not what I had in mind of course, but I know what you mean by that even though I can't say that I agree with that judgement. I was thinking more of specific scenes from the Bond novels and the continuations that make you feel squeamish but I'm sure you knew that.

    Sorry. I wasn't trying to hijack the thread -- just trying to be a wiseass.

    No, that's fine. I understand how many people feel about the Continuations! Let me take this opportunity to welcome you to our community. You seem like a very worthy addition to the literary Bond ranks here. Be sure to stick around! :)
  • GoldenGunGoldenGun Per ora e il momento che verrà
    Posts: 5,593
    The torture scene in CR is even more painful to read than the one in the movie.
  • BirdlesonBirdleson San Jose, CAModerator
    Posts: 31,015
    I know that there are many, I need to read them again to get my head back to the exact moments.
  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger Enemy of the state
    Posts: 41,566
    Nothing beats the killing of Tracy.
  • zerozerozerozero The far far east
    edited April 2016 Posts: 54
    I think the scene in which Nannie Norrich reaches through the guillotine for a gun, only to have James Bond pull the lever kind of makes me pucker up.

    That would be a hard one to film without inviting a 15 certificate. It's one of my favourite books though. For some reason I always thought that George Lazenby would have been very good as bond if this had been filmed.
  • suavejmfsuavejmf Harrogate, North Yorkshire, England
    Posts: 5,131
    Gettler wrote: »
    Live and Let Dies torture scene with breaking Bond's fingers. Fleming has a way with words.

    That's such a well written scene!

    Agree. Not pleasent.
  • BirdlesonBirdleson San Jose, CAModerator
    edited April 2016 Posts: 31,015
    I am watching THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH, how could I not have mentioned Renard pulling that piece of glas (or is it wood?) out of his hand?
  • DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
    Posts: 14,724
    zerozero wrote: »
    I think the scene in which Nannie Norrich reaches through the guillotine for a gun, only to have James Bond pull the lever kind of makes me pucker up.

    That would be a hard one to film without inviting a 15 certificate. It's one of my favourite books though. For some reason I always thought that George Lazenby would have been very good as bond if this had been filmed.

    You know, that's another one that jumped out at me when I first read it (and on re-reads). In fact, I can't believe that I forgot to mention that scene in the OP. I think it's the part where the blood is pumping from her severed arms that really gets me. I think that Gardner really upped the brutality in the literary Bond after Amis' lead example in Colonel Sun. I'm glad he did, lest things become stale and outdated.
  • DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
    Posts: 14,724
    Birdleson wrote: »
    I am watching THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH, how could I not have mentioned Renard pulling that piece of glas (or is it wood?) out of his hand?

    I think that was meant for the films thread. Sorry, but I know it is confusing having two very similarly worded threads! ;)
  • BirdlesonBirdleson San Jose, CAModerator
    Posts: 31,015
    Oh crap! You're right! Sorry.
  • DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
    Posts: 14,724
    Birdleson wrote: »
    Oh crap! You're right! Sorry.

    No, it's fine. I had to check myself to see if I was posting this in the Novels thread and not the (understandably) more popular Films thread. Perhaps the scene featured in the novelisation by Raymond Benson though. :)

    I wonder could you post that comment in the Films thread for me, @Birdleson? Thanks!
  • BirdlesonBirdleson San Jose, CAModerator
    Posts: 31,015
    I did.
  • DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
    Posts: 14,724
    Birdleson wrote: »
    I did.

    Thank you - I've replied to it!
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