Folio Society - Ian Fleming Special Editions

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  • That and Raymond Benson's Die Another Day really are the next two you would expect.
  • BirdlesonBirdleson San Jose, CAModerator
    Posts: 30,472
    One would
  • QsCatQsCat London
    Posts: 134
    Is Colonel Sun the best non-Fleming book? I was considering getting a copy..
  • NickTwentyTwoNickTwentyTwo Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts: 4,021
    QsCat wrote: »
    Is Colonel Sun the best non-Fleming book? I was considering getting a copy..

    I have a copy and have not read it yet to my shame.
  • Posts: 511
    Did Kingsley Amis actually know Ian Fleming socially? - I think he did.

    I agree, Colonel Sun would be a good Folio choice.
  • edited February 4 Posts: 2,248
    Did Kingsley Amis actually know Ian Fleming socially? - I think he did.

    Correct, they met on at least two occasions. Amis sent Fleming the text of his James Bond Dossier and the two met to discuss it. Eric Jacobs's biography of Amis states that Fleming gave his impressions of the Dossier over lunch at L'Etoile restaurant in Charlotte Street:

    Amis went with some misgivings. Although his book was more pro than anti, Amis had pulled Fleming up where he thought he had gone wrong, complaining, for instance, when the Bond books slipped into "the idiom of the novelette." But Fleming wasn't worried about any of that. He had only two complaints to make. Oddjob had been sucked, not blown, out of the pressure-cabin of an aircraft. And there was no St. Andrews Golf Club; the club in question was the Royal and Ancient Golf Club. Apart from these, Fleming had no objections or corrections and no quarrel with Amis's critical judgments. (p. 271)

    Fleming afterward provided a blurb for the Dossier: "Intelligent, perceptive, and of course to me highly entertaining. The whole jape is quite spiffing and heaven knows what a smart reviewer will do about the book."

    Amis and Fleming's second encounter is described in one of Ann Fleming's letters to Evelyn Waugh, dated July 19, 1964:

    Kingsley Amis came to dinner; his anger was well concealed, or has perhaps gone in middle age. I suspected he wrote of Ian to further his own sales, but it seemed a genuine admiration, he thinks Ian should write a straight novel.

    The reference to "anger" is a joke about Amis's status as one of the "angry young men," a group of artists who shook up the British arts establishment in the 1950s. I wish Fleming had lived long enough to follow Amis's advice!
  • Posts: 511
    That’s excellent @Revelator, thank you. I vaguely recalled that Amis had met Fleming but did not know the details.

    This personal link between the authors is something that distinguishes Colonel Sun from all the other continuation novels, I think.
  • QsCatQsCat London
    Posts: 134
    QsCat wrote: »
    Is Colonel Sun the best non-Fleming book? I was considering getting a copy..

    I have a copy and have not read it yet to my shame.

    Shame on you [-X
  • DragonpolDragonpol Writer @ http://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    edited February 5 Posts: 14,437
    Birdleson wrote: »
    I agree. I feel that it holds a unique place.

    It certainly does. Colonel Sun being written in the 1960s helps, as does the fact that Amis and Fleming had met a few times. It gives it much more legitimacy and authenticity than a period set book written after the fact does, as is the current practice of IFP with Faulks, Boyd and Horowitz. Period set novels are often sanitised and rather clunking and obvious with their weaving in of real world happenings. Amis was also a very famous post-war British literary author and brought his own prestige to the role of Bond continuation scribe. He remains to this day the most high-profile author to have ever penned a Bond continuation novel. Amis had of course also written two books on the literary Bond (both published in 1965) so was well qualified to pick things up from where Fleming left off.

    In fact, Colonel Sun was listed along with the Fleming novels in either the first or second page (depending on the edition) of the Pan Fleming paperback Bonds. Colonel Sun was of course first printed in paperback form in the UK by Pan Books in 1970. The only other novel to have the unique distinction of being listed along with the Fleming books by Pan was John Pearson's James Bond: The Authorised Biography of 007 (1973).
    That’s excellent @Revelator, thank you. I vaguely recalled that Amis had met Fleming but did not know the details.

    This personal link between the authors is something that distinguishes Colonel Sun from all the other continuation novels, I think.

    I suppose you could also include John Pearson's James Bond: The Authorised Biography of 007 (1973) as well. Pearson worked under Fleming at the Sunday Times and later wrote the first biography of Fleming, published in 1966. It all depends on your definition of a Bond continuation novel though as Pearson's book was more of a fictionalised biography of Bond than a straight novel. (These were popular in the 1970s. Pearson later wrote a fictional authorised biography of Biggles in 1978 for instance). It's open to debate. The same could also be said for the two Christopher Wood film novelisations from the late 1970s. It's something of a grey area, you could say, with perhaps no definitive answer.
  • BirdlesonBirdleson San Jose, CAModerator
    Posts: 30,472
    I've never been a fan of the Pearson Bond book (I originally read it as a youth, in hard cover over several days in the town library). But beyond finding it rather dull, if one was to consider it canon then MR (the best of the lot) ceases to exist as an actual James Bond adventure. Unacceptable.
  • NickTwentyTwoNickTwentyTwo Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts: 4,021
    I have never read the Pearson book, but yes, we need Moonraker, and so I will never read the biography.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 34,253
    Birdleson wrote: »
    I've never been a fan of the Pearson Bond book (I originally read it as a youth, in hard cover over several days in the town library). But beyond finding it rather dull, if one was to consider it canon then MR (the best of the lot) ceases to exist as an actual James Bond adventure. Unacceptable.

    Yes, we certainly can't have that.
  • edited February 5 Posts: 2,248
    I have never read the Pearson book, but yes, we need Moonraker, and so I will never read the biography.

    I encourage you to read it. Just consider the Pearson book to be set in an alternate continuity/universe. Pearson knew Fleming well, was a good writer, and understood both Bond and Fleming. His book might discount Moonraker but it has plenty of adventures and scenes that recall and supplement Fleming's Bond and even add an extra dimension to the myth. Bond himself gains an extra layer of characterization in Pearson's hands, which can't be said about many other continuation authors.
  • One of the continuation books “erases” MR from the continuity? Why? To what purpose lol
  • NickTwentyTwoNickTwentyTwo Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts: 4,021
    One of the continuation books “erases” MR from the continuity? Why? To what purpose lol

    My understanding is that it directly contradicts parts of Moonraker, but obviously someone who's read it can chime in more accurately.
  • DragonpolDragonpol Writer @ http://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 14,437
    Birdleson wrote: »
    I've never been a fan of the Pearson Bond book (I originally read it as a youth, in hard cover over several days in the town library). But beyond finding it rather dull, if one was to consider it canon then MR (the best of the lot) ceases to exist as an actual James Bond adventure. Unacceptable.

    Yes, I agree about it being odd that it removes Moonraker as a legitimate Bond adventure. Like you I consider it to be the best of the Bond novels. It was also the first one I read. I think one can read the Authorised Biography in tandem with the Fleming novels but it's obviously not canon and doesn't overrule Fleming. Fleming canon should always come first in any dispute with a later work.

    I know that deception operations like that were mounted during World War II and the Cold War but if it means cancelling out the best novel in the Bond series by following Pearson then it's obviously a bridge too far!
  • BirdlesonBirdleson San Jose, CAModerator
    Posts: 30,472
    One of the continuation books “erases” MR from the continuity? Why? To what purpose lol

    My understanding is that it directly contradicts parts of Moonraker, but obviously someone who's read it can chime in more accurately.

    Pearson tries to put Bond in the real world. So, obviously, if Moonraker actually happened, unlike the other adventures, the world would have known about it. So, in Pearson's universe, MI6 convinced Fleming to write an outrageous story (MR), so that the public would not begin to suspect that Bond was a real agent.
  • Birdleson wrote: »
    One of the continuation books “erases” MR from the continuity? Why? To what purpose lol

    My understanding is that it directly contradicts parts of Moonraker, but obviously someone who's read it can chime in more accurately.

    Pearson tries to put Bond in the real world. So, obviously, if Moonraker actually happened, unlike the other adventures, the world would have known about it. So, in Pearson's universe, MI6 convinced Fleming to write an outrageous story (MR), so that the public would not begin to suspect that Bond was a real agent.

    If Moonraker was the only fictional Bond novel Fleming wrote, he should have written more of them. ;)
  • DragonpolDragonpol Writer @ http://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 14,437
    That and Raymond Benson's Die Another Day really are the next two you would expect.

    I see that sarcasm is still very much alive and well at MI6 Community. :D
  • edited February 9 Posts: 5,747
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    That and Raymond Benson's Die Another Day really are the next two you would expect.

    I see that sarcasm is still very much alive and well at MI6 Community. :D

    I never joke about Die Another Day, Double-Oh Dragonpol. 😐
  • DragonpolDragonpol Writer @ http://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 14,437
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    That and Raymond Benson's Die Another Day really are the next two you would expect.

    I see that sarcasm is still very much alive and well at MI6 Community. :D

    I never joke about Die Another Day, Double-Oh Dragonpol. 😐

    That's why you're @Some_Kind_Of_Hero! ;)
  • 00Agent00Agent Any man who drinks Dom Perignon '52 can't be all bad.
    edited March 3 Posts: 5,163
    00Agent wrote: »
    If Folio can keep the release schedule of the last couple years, we should have the next book announcement in exactly 3 weeks from now, with the release one week later.

    Something nice to look forward to.
    One week later than I had anticipated but I was still pretty close.

    Must be one of the top 4 books. My money is on YOLT.

  • Posts: 1,062
    It's got to be the second from the top.
  • Yeah that looks the most likely. Excited to see the illustrations for it, if it is indeed YOLT.
  • DoctorNoDoctorNo USA-Maryland
    Posts: 707
    Tomorrow is the day...
  • Posts: 2,248
    You only buy twice, or so it seems...

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    159217738_10226056890547499_3909607243386194400_n.jpg?_nc_cat=100&ccb=1-3&_nc_sid=b9115d&_nc_ohc=HeNvbXLJOGIAX8EHn17&_nc_ht=scontent-sjc3-1.xx&oh=4d91bb01603cea44cec66a19840d0647&oe=606DA920[img][/img]
  • Posts: 1,100
    Kissy Suzuki!
  • goldenswissroyalegoldenswissroyale Switzerland
    Posts: 2,773
    =bg= wrote: »
    Kissy Suzuki!

    Wasn't she naked in this scene?
  • edited March 10 Posts: 2,248
    Wasn't she naked in this scene?

    Kissy usually dove naked, but she dressed up when Bond visited:
    Kissy came out of the house. She was wearing a kind of white cotton night-dress and a white cotton kerchief bound up the thick black waves of her hair. She wore her equipment, the weights and the heavy flat angular pick, over the white dress; only her arms and feet were bare. Bond may have shown his disappointment. She laughed, teasing him. "This is ceremonial dress for diving in the presence of important strangers. The kannushi-san instructed me to wear it in your company. As a mark of respect, of course."

    "Kissy, I believe that is a fib. The truth of the matter is that you consider that your nakedness might arouse dishonourable thoughts in my impious Western mind. That is a most unworthy suspicion. However, I accept the delicacy of your respect for my susceptibilities. And now, let's cut the cackle and get going. We'll beat the awabi record today. What should we aim at?"

    (Excerpt from chapter 14)
  • Agent_99Agent_99 enjoys a spirited ride as much as the next girl
    Posts: 2,552
    That's a lovely pic of Bond. Usually in the Folio illustrations, you don't see his face (so you can project your own Bond onto him?).
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