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Octopussy & The Living Daylights: Discover two of the most beloved James Bond stories (James Bond 007, 14)

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Smythe is a very interesting character and the story is mostly told via his flashbacks of his involvement in the murder. An attractive copy of the First Edition/First Printing in Fine condition in a like, bright dust-jacket. In 1918 he transferred to the 9th Sudanese Battalion of the Egyptian Army, where he served for two years.

While the eggs are slightly more moist than you would wish for eating, remove the pan from heat, add rest of butter and continue whisking for half a minute, adding the while finely chopped chives or fine herbs. Registered office: WSM Services Limited, Connect House, 133-137 Alexandra Road, Wimbledon, LONDON SW19 7JY.Except for the presence of an actual octopus in both the story and the film, they are wholly dissimilar. The collection consisted of two short stories--the title piece and "The Living Daylights"; a third story, "The Property of a Lady," was added for the book's paperback incarnation. And “The Living Daylights” sends Bond to Berlin to protect a British agent before an assassin strikes.

And so, when the novel was ultimately released some eight months later, the world must have understandably believed that this unfleshed-out caper would be the author's final word regarding 007. I think it clocks in somewhere just slightly over 100 pages, the print is large, and every so often there's a page dedicated to some pointillist drawings.And he is not even interested in getting it done right, which also explains the perfectly imperfect ending as well. Bond, never wishing to kill anyone in cold blood, decides to instead shoot the butt of her rifle, preventing her from making the kill. The rights to Fleming's works were held by Glidrose Productions (now Ian Fleming Publications) and the company decided that two short stories, "Octopussy" and "The Living Daylights", would be published in 1966.

The Secret Service learns that Maria Freudenstein, an employee known to be a double agent working for the Soviet Union, has just received a valuable item of jewelry crafted by Peter Carl Fabergé and is planning to auction it at Sotheby's. Bond is sent to Berlin to kill a KGB assassin who is trying to prevent a Russian scientist from defecting to the west. Bringing down the curtain on the world's most famous secret agent, Fleming's final collection, slim as it is, yet manages to entertain and impress. Those early covers and the linkage to the movies with a continuously randy Bond were what my personal censors knew about the books. So, four stories from Fleming - one masterpiece among them, two short but brilliantly sustained off-kilter stories and one middling disappointment.Told from the Major's point of view, it is interesting to get another view on Bond and see another aspect of his life and job. Major Dexter Smythe feels like one of the guilt-ridden and melancholic sinners from the latter's novels and his crime, unfolding in Austria just after the war, again reeks of "The Third Man" in its portrait of a moral duplicity on the side of the Allies rather than the former Axis powers, proving that war corrupts all innocence and idealism, irrespective of allegiances or loyalties. Here, Bond is given a particularly nasty assignment by his superior, M: to kill the sniper who will be attempting to shoot a British agent; an agent who will soon be making a dash across the no-man's-land between East and West Berlin; the zone soon to be known as "Checkpoint Charlie. The agent is attached to the United Nations and M is sending Bond to tell her that the CIA is close to identifying her. The hardback edition of the book contained only the two stories mentioned in the title, although when the paperbacks editions were published, "The Property of a Lady" was also included.

This works as a good excuse to have him serve as an audience surrogate and have a world rarely seen explained to us without seeming condescending. Fleming assuredly leads the dark story to its doomed denouement and even tinges the climax with an enigmatic, seductive mystery. In the Second World War, he commanded the 2nd regiment of the Mechanised Brigade of the Arab Legion and later joined the British Council for Palestine-Transjordan. He's a real human character, not just a quip and a suit, and we get to see that here, flaws and all. Bond goes to Sotheby's for the auction of a long lost Fabergé emerald for the purpose of discovering a Russian spy in England.

I really do enjoy the Bond short stories because in the absence of broad-reaching plots and numerous characters, Fleming gives us insight into the character that's difficult to convey on film.

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