Author(s): Fergus Fleming
On 16 August 1952, Ian Fleming wrote to his wife, Ann, 'My love, This is only a tiny letter to try out my new typewriter and to see if it will write golden words since it is made of gold'. He had bought the gold-plated typewriter as a present to himself for finishing his first novel, Casino Royale. It marked in glamorous style the arrival of James Bond, agent 007, and the start of a career that saw Fleming become one of the world's most celebrated thriller writers. And he did write golden words. Before his death in 1964 he produced fourteen bestselling Bond books, two works of non-fiction and the famous children's story Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang. Fleming's output was matched by an equally energetic flow of letters. He wrote constantly, to his wife, publisher, editors, fans, friends and critics, charting 007's progress with correspondence that ranged from badgering Jonathan Cape about his quota of free copies -- a coin was tossed; Fleming lost - to apologising for having mistaken a certain brand of perfume and for equipping Bond with the wrong kind of gun. His letters also reflect his friendships with contemporaries such as Raymond Chandler, Noel Coward and Somerset Maugham. Before the world-famous films came the world-famous novels. This books tells the story of the man who wrote them and how he created spy fiction's most compelling hero.
The witty and engaging letters of the man who created the world's most famous spy - James Bond
Shortlisted for Crimefest H. R. F. Keating Award 2016.
It’s no figure of speech – the James Bond creator actually indulged in a golden typewriter – but it might as well have been; these are frequently witty, always intelligent missives, generously annotated by the editor. A must for Bond fans and anyone intrigued by the writer’s craft.
Ethan, The Book Grocer
Fergus Fleming is Ian Fleming's nephew. He is the author of several other non-fiction books including Barrow's Boys, Killing Dragons and Ninety Degrees North. He is also the co-publisher of Queen Anne Press.