Goldfinger, by Ian Fleming

A plot summary hardly seems necessary.

The first Bond novel I've read. I'd picked up the impression that the books were very chauvinistic and misogynistic, and that Bond was a fairly unsympathetic character, but that wasn't how it turned out. The main thing that struck me was how unsophisticated the writing was. It is a reasonably good story (albeit without several of the flashy gimmicks and set-pieces of the film) but felt a bit, well, dated really.

One thing that did taste a bit sour was a sort of casual racism when he characterised e.g. Koreans or Mexicans using fairly crude stereotypes.

I'd also expected a load of "product placement" or at least name-checking of famous brands, but what there was of this didn't seem over-the-top. Perhaps this is something that's so common in contemporary writing that I just didn't notice it.

As well as missing the Aston Martin's ejector seat etc., there were a couple of differences in the plot, but from what I remember, I think the book version was a bit better. It was interesting to read this then, but I didn't feel an urgent need to read any more in the series.

Completed : 24-May-2010

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