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Anyway, due to the time constraints, long work days etc. I just don't think I can give that time to it, I'm afraid. I'm gutted, as it is something I really want to do but I know I'd not be able to keep up with you all. Plus, not being a reader of novels, I'm not sure what I could add to the discussion.
Reading the Flemings would definitely enrich your Bond experience. And it would be great to have input from someone experiencing them for the first time. Would you be able to commit to one book every three weeks if everyone agreed to that? Roughly 100 pages per week?
Join in whenever you can and you'd like! There's no real rule set for this, past reading a novel every two weeks and discussing it. You can always read one or two when the time comes and discuss accordingly, or whatever works best for you.
I'm not a big audiobook listener (I read way faster than anyone can talk) but I really rate the Bonds for the brilliant narrators.
A couple of years ago I had an overnight flight, and I don't sleep very well on planes (mostly because I'm too excited about being on a plane). Luckily, the seatback entertainment system included David Tennant reading OHMSS, which was a great way to kill eight hours with my eyes shut.
Perhaps I will read and review one of the books I've only read once, could stand a re-read. Or I may even try an audio book, they did assemble a great collection of narrators for that one series.
I'm also engaged in a personal project to run through the Bond films and do reviews for them all, something I'd like to keep up with, but I don't know if I could find a balance between all those commitments.
I'll test the waters with Casino Royale, and that'll dictate if I just cut my losses or try to continue with everyone else. I'll be reading everything after Moonraker for the first time, so I don't think I'd have much to add to discussions and I don't know if I'll have the context or knowledge to do reviews of the books after I finish them as I was originally planning. I feel I'll just be able to provide impressions, as I don't know where the books go in the grand scheme and wouldn't be able to comment on how Bond in the early books foreshadows his later development.
I do want to give it my best shot, however, as reading the original books is the last thing I need to complete to consider myself a worthy Bond fan. It's just something that you have to do, I feel, and that's why I bought as many of the books as I could years back when I knew such a time would come. I am still missing Goldfinger and the short stories, so I need to find nice copies of them soon.
Can any fans who collect the novels recommend me some nice versions of Goldfinger and the short stories that would be ideal for me to pick up? I don't know if there are any prints out there that collection all of Fleming's short stories in one comprehensive volume, but if there is that would be most ideal for me. I think for Goldfinger I'll try to track down a used copy of one from the Penguin Centenary editions that were printed to celebrate Fleming's 100th birthday, as the quality and style of those prints were impressive to me and most of my Bond literary collection are from that set (as I purchased most of the books around 2008-2009 when I became obsessed with the films).
I'm sure the collection of all Fleming's stories that you mention is out of print too, if it did release around 2008.
I was going to recommend that one, too. Nice crisp print, handy size. (Got mine in a charity shop, as with most of my collection.)
UK Amazon has plenty of copies for 1p + postage; not sure what the situation in the US is.
(Incidentally, I am always happy to act as a UK address facilitator if anyone is having delivery issues with something they want.)
Sitting around bored and just now realized it's Thursday, time to open up CR finally!
So there are a few of us that are going to partake in this, correct? As long as four or five of us are in to some extent, that's better than nothing. Figured this wouldn't be as populated as the Bondathon was, since that's much easier to handle.
They're my personal favorites. The covers capture the sex, escapism and style of the books in a very adult way, whereas most Bond book covers these days barely have anything but the title on them. How boring.
I remember taking Live & Let Die to school during high school to read in my downtime, and I'm sure the cover drew some eyes.
There's also this one they did for the short story collections found in QoS (ignore the random shot from the film):
I have all Penguin editions, except that the copy of FRWL I have is another Penguin cover in a different style and I have TB, OHMSS and YOLT in one whole collection called The Blofeld Trilogy, with a skull on the cover. I don't know if I should get each of those 3 separate, though it would make it easier to read them, since the collection is about 700 pages and big to lug around.
Those are my own favorite editions as well. Just a few months ago I found a copy of Quantum of Solace in this format at a used book store in Berkeley CA. Just one of the many benefits of hanging around in librul Berkeley....
@Creasy47, I'll have to see. The collector side of me wouldn't mind having these wonderful editions in their solo forms for TB, OHMSS and YOLT, so I may jump on it. Looking on Amazon all the books they have ready to order are used copies at or below $5, so I should jump on the chance as it's a steal.
Some time back, I managed to get the complete set of those beautiful Penguins off eBay for a very good price (less than each book's list price anyway). I'm trying to keep them in as perfect condition as I can, though my DAF has some slight wear at the corners from reading now. I'm actually trying to read out of these books as little as possible. Sounds a bit silly: having books and not wanting to read from them!
And yes, tonight we begin with Casino Royale!
I definitely get where you're coming from. Some of the copies I got were "used" but look like they were just finished being printed, so I'm going to handle them as carefully as possible.
CR it is tonight! Looking forward to it.
I guess that'd be an incentive for some, but I love books too much to keep them on the shelf. I think the best love you could show to a book is taking it out and giving it your attention. There's a lot of books in my collection, my proudest being beautiful Wordsworth paperbacks of all the Sherlock Holmes stories, that have a bit of wear on them from the days where I took them everywhere I could.
I'd never sell any of my books anyway, so keeping them perfect has never been a worry. I don't mishandle them or mindlessly use them roughly, but I also don't turn each page delicately, if that makes sense. ;)
@Birdleson, my favorite old designs for the books I've seen are the Jove covers from 1983, where 8 of the books were reprinted:
If I were alive at the time, I would've loved to pick them up, as they have a great look to them.
The old Great Pan covers were great too, for their pulpy look:
I hold that the Penguin covers are the best we've had in the past twenty or so years. I don't think I could ever get them in hardback, as they are such a trial to pick up and read in an enjoyable way. I only get hardbacks when I have no other options.