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Publisher's Summary

When 007 turns up at a sleepy American backwoods motel, it doesn’t take him long to realise that Vivienne Michel is in a tight spot, and that Sol Horror and Sluggsy Morant are hardened killers bent on destruction. Escaping from a past she doesn’t want to relive, Viv turns to James Bond to save her.

Includes an exclusive bonus interview with Rosamund Pike.

Ian Fleming was born in London in 1908. He was educated at Eton and worked as a journalist in Moscow and a banker and stockbroker in London before becoming personal assistant to the Director of Naval Intelligence during the Second World War. He wrote his first Bond novel, Casino Royale, in 1952 at Goldeneye, his home in Jamaica. Since then James Bond has gone on to become a global phenomenon.

Rosamund Pike is a contemporary and multifaceted actress who has earned international acclaim for both her stage and film roles. She is soon to take the lead as Amy Dunne in the highly anticipated big screen adaptation of Gone Girl, and will also star in the upcoming BBC comedy What We Did On Our Holiday. She recently starred in Hector and The Search For Happiness and Edgar Wright’s The World’s End. Past film credits include Jack Reacher, Wrath Of The Titans, Die Another Day, An Education and Made In Dagenham, among others. On television, Pike has been working on the upcoming re-invention of classic children’s series Thunderbirds Are Go! in which she will voice International Rescue agent Lady Penelope.

©1962 Ian Fleming Publications Ltd (P)2013 Ian Fleming Publications Ltd. © AudioGO Ltd, 2012. James Bond and 007 are registered trademarks of Danjaq LLC, used under licence by Ian Fleming Publications Ltd.

Critic Reviews

"Ian Fleming keeps you riveted. His narrative pulls with the smooth power of Bond's Thunderbird." (Sunday Telegraph)
"Ruthlessly, fashionably efficient in both love and war." (The Times)
"Muscularly brilliant...not for prudes." (Evening Standard)
"If there’s a better writer of pure thrillers than Fleming, the name escapes me" (The Boston Globe)
"Mr. Fleming is splendid; he stops at nothing." (New Statesman)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Performance
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  • Toby Mounsey-Heysham
  • 11-15-17

great performance but not a Fleming classic

very dull story with no real bond. quite disappointed. reading was great from r pike

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  • Stephen
  • 06-05-17

not where you want to start

not where you would start if you want to begin reading the Bond books, but an interesting twist in the formula as it's written from the perspective of a woman involved in a Bond caper

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  • Drewdle
  • 09-08-16

Bond, but not as you know it!

What an interesting book! A really fascinating novel with how its written. I had to go back and check the title on a couple of occasions as I thought I had downloaded the wrong thing. I won't spoil it by letting on what impressed me about this book, I'll let you listen and make your own mind up. It impressed me and I highly recommend it. It is certainly a twist on the Bond theme.
Really enjoyed Ms Pike's narration, also unexpected and different.
Worth its 5 stars.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-15-15

I've never read a 'Mills&Boon' until now...

the plot is strong, but centres on the 'Bond girl' rather than Bond him-self, who doesn't show up until very near the end, for a tense stand-off and spectacular climax.
Rosamund Pike is a strong and fitting narrator for this 007 tale.

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  • Dr Caterpillar
  • 12-06-14

Very different

If you could sum up The Spy Who Loved Me (with Interview) in three words, what would they be?

Not the film.

What did you like best about this story?

I like the fact that it is so unlike all the other James Bond novels and short stories (except for Quantum of Solace). I found it a thoroughly engaging story of a young woman's life at a particular period. The complete absence of Bond himself - or anything to do with espionage - for most of the story was very refreshing. When he finally does turn up, we know how fortunate the young woman is, even if she doesn't!

Have you listened to any of Rosamund Pike’s other performances? How does this one compare?

No, none of her other readings grab, though I would be happy to hear her voice in another story that did interest me.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Not really, although I was engaged from start to finish.

Any additional comments?

Somebody told me it's the Bond novel to skip. It's not!

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  • Crispin
  • 11-12-14

Very Surprising

I usually find Bond a bit two dimensional for my taste. This one was different possibly because Bond doesn't really feature. I had to double check I was actually listening to a Bond novel and hadn't downloaded something else by mistake.

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  • Mr
  • 10-19-13

Not your average Bond

I really like the shift in narrative viewpoint in this first person novel, it confounds your traditional 'Bond' expectations. Fleming was obviously trying to imbue the range with some literary weight and re-energise it. The female perspective is - mostly - very believable and it puts Bond into new territory as it’s a smaller scale adventure which is to its credit.

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  • Sarah
  • 07-11-13

Not what I was expecting...

Is there anything you would change about this book?

There is a lot of back story to the character of Viv and it takes a surprisingly long time before Bond appears. I also did not enjoy hearing the line 'all women enjoy semi-rape' (or similar) - but I suppose this is of its time.

If you’ve listened to books by Ian Fleming before, how does this one compare?

I have not listened to Fleming before, I'll try again!

What about Rosamund Pike’s performance did you like?

I thought her voice was convincing for the character and her Canadian accent seemed OK to me (as a British person)

Could you see The Spy Who Loved Me being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

well, it is a film...

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  • Adam
  • 02-03-15

Well written sexism

Pretty much summed up by the title. Worse phrase I've ever heard in a book; "Every girl likes a semi-rape". Lovely.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-23-13

Weakest of the James Bond books

What did you like best about The Spy Who Loved Me? What did you like least?

This is, to my mind, undoubtedly the weakest of the James Bond books. Narrated in the first person by the heroine, the first half of the book tells her life story and how she comes to end up in such a perilous predicament - interesting, quite well written but hardly the stuff of a James Bond thriller. The book only gets going when he turns up halfway through, and from then on it zings along at a better pace.

Which character – as performed by Rosamund Pike – was your favourite?

Rosamund Pike's narration rescues the book, I think. she paints a vivid portrait of the heroine, the villains who threaten her, and most of all James Bond himself. And once the story gets going, the way she racks up the tension and the momentum is a tour de force. Wonderful.

Any additional comments?

Recommended though as I said probably the weakest book in the series. Worth it for Rosamund Pike's narration.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful