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Quantum of Solace: The Complete James Bond Short Stories Paperback – August 26, 2008

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About the Author

Ian Fleming (1908-1964), creator of the world's best-known secret agent, is the author of fourteen James Bond books. Born in London in 1908 and educated at Eton and Sandhurst, he became the Reuters Moscow correspondent in 1929. In the spring of 1939, Fleming went back to Moscow as a special correspondent for the London Times. In June of that same year, he joined Naval Intelligence and served throughout World War II, finally earning the rank of Commander, RNVSR (Sp.). Much of the James Bond material was drawn directly from Fleming's experiences as an intelligence officer. Later, Fleming became a consultant on foreign affairs for the London Sunday Times, by which time he had become far better known as the creator of James Bond.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 279 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (August 26, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143114581
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143114581
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.5 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #330,315 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Ian Fleming was born in London on May 28, 1908. He was educated at Eton College and later spent a formative period studying languages in Europe. His first job was with Reuters News Agency where a Moscow posting gave him firsthand experience with what would become his literary bete noire--the Soviet Union. During World War II he served as Assistant to the Director of Naval Intelligence and played a key role in Allied espionage operations.

After the war he worked as foreign manager of the Sunday Times, a job that allowed him to spend two months each year in Jamaica. Here, in 1952, at his home "Goldeneye," he wrote a book called Casino Royale--and James Bond was born. The first print run sold out within a month. For the next twelve years Fleming produced a novel a year featuring Special Agent 007, the most famous spy of the century. His travels, interests, and wartime experience lent authority to everything he wrote. Raymond Chandler described him as "the most forceful and driving writer of thrillers in England." Sales soared when President Kennedy named the fifth title, From Russia With Love, one of his favorite books. The Bond novels have sold more than one hundred million copies worldwide, boosted by the hugely successful film franchise that began in 1962 with the release of Dr. No.

He married Anne Rothermere in 1952. His story about a magical car, written in 1961 for their only son Caspar, went on to become the well-loved novel and film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Fleming died of heart failure on August 12, 1964, at the age of fifty-six.


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39 of 39 people found the following review helpful By H. S. Wedekind VINE VOICE on September 16, 2008
Format: Paperback
"Quantum of Solace - the amount of comfort. Yes, I suppose you could say that all love and friendship is based in the end on that. Human beings are very insecure. When the other person not only makes you feel insecure but actually seems to want to destroy you, it's obviously the end. The Quantum of Solace stands at zero. You've got to get away to save yourself."


This paperback, recently released before the debut on November 21, 2008 of the latest 007 movie of the same name, "Quantum of Solace," is actually a compilation of nine short stories written by Ian Fleming in two separate books (FOR YOUR EYES ONLY and OCTOPUSSY/THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS). According to Fleming's biographer John Pearson in his book THE LIFE OF IAN FLEMING, six or so of these short stories began as outlines for half-hour TV episodes written for CBS in the late '50s. The TV series never got off the ground but the short stories have survived. Several of them were made into full-length movies having absolutely nothing to do with the original stories (e.g. "Octopussy," "From a View to a Kill," and "For Your Eyes Only"). I can't imagine the next Bond movie, starring Daniel Craig as a much better 007 than any of the previous ones in my opinion, (Sean Connery excepted) has anything to do with the short story "Quantum of Solace," since it is only about a conversation between JB and the Governor of The Bahamas (the governor's name is never given) in Nassau after a dinner party. There's no action. No intrigue. No skullduggery. It's simply a story about a failed marriage. Suffice it to say, the short stories are well-worth reading on their own. Bond is his usual suave and deadly self and a staunch defender of Queen and Country against the West's old Cold War nemesis...the Soviet Union. Highly recommended.
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41 of 44 people found the following review helpful By R. MCCOSKER on October 10, 2008
Format: Paperback
This is a collection of all of the nine short stories about James Bond which were written by the late Ian Fleming.

(Fleming, of course, created the character of James Bond and was the author of the books which became the basis for all the James Bond movies. In addition to the short stories, Fleming wrote twelve novels about Bond.)

Over the years, these short stories have been kept in print in two collections: _For Your Eyes Only_, with five stories; and _Octopussy and The Living Daylights_, with four.

Now, for the first time ever, every one of the nine stories have been collected in a single volume, _Quantum of Solace_, which makes owning all these stories more convenient and economical.

That's the good news.

The not-so-good news is that the publisher here exercised no imagination, merely sandwiching together the contents of the two books.

Looking for a well-written foreword or afterword about these stories or their author? No such luck: The publisher includes no foreword or afterword at all.

The stories as earlier collected were not arranged according to the sequence of James Bond's life -- or to any other discernible plan. This new omnibus collection does absolutely nothing to fix that -- it just puts one unchanged collection behind another unchanged collection. This is disappointing, because we know from books by researchers like John Griswold (_Ian Fleming's James Bond: Annotations and Chronologies_) that there are sound ways to sequence the stories (and novels) by events in the life of James Bond.

Here are the contents of _Quantum of Solace_, as arranged in the book:

(Repeating the contents in sequence from _For Your Eyes Only_ ...
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Michael C. Smith VINE VOICE on November 12, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This collection of Ian Fleming short stories is a must have for any Bond fan. I have been discovering Fleming since the release of the film "Casino Royale" and have found his books to be not only thrilling but also very well written. His prose is as lean, hard and ruthless as James Bond himself. He is a joy to read.

Here in "Quantum of Solace" I was not disappointed. All the stories are wonderful and it is amazing to see how Fleming can pack so much drama and excitement into a few pages just as he does in his full-length novels.

Among the best short stories, at least my favorites are;

"Risico" has a wonderful Roman setting and a surprise villain, just so much fun.

"Quantum of Solace" is an incredible tale of the death of love told over cocktails.

"View To A Kill", Catapults the reader into a trill ride which is very cinematic and a great story.

"Property of a Lady" shows the cool everyday aspect of what being a Secret Service agent is about.

"The Living Daylights". Here the cold winter cityscape of cold war Berlin is wonderfully described and a little romance too.

And of special note you can find a scrumptious recipe for scrambled eggs in "007 In New York" (The character of Solange in the film of Casino Royale seems to have come from this story)

All the stories are wonderful, and this is a must have for any Bond fan. It is fascinating to pick out scenes from the stories that have ended up being incorporated into various films in the franchise, some intact with their stories titles and some buried into a plot for a film not related to the title. Such is the case with "Risico". You will have fun just as I did in the "Ah ha" moment of realization on this point.
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