Tuesday, 13 May 2008

The name'zh Bond, Jamezh Bond

A few oddments brought to mind by Penguin Blog's piece, Covering Bond, in the run-up to the centenary of Ian Fleming's birth on May 28th:

In the Guardian, The name's Ronson, Jon Ronson tells of Ronson's attempt to re-create James Bond's Aston Martin DB3 drive from London to Geneva in Goldfinger, in the process experiencing the real-world consequences of sitting in a car for days living on Bond's diet of rich food and alcohol. And there's the transcript of QI, Series 3, Episode 6, containing the revelation that some of the more picturesque local colour in Ian Fleming's books was complete nonsense. This includes the factoids that homosexuals can't whistle, and that sumo wrestlers "by assiduous massage" can learn to tuck their testicles into their bodies to avoid injury (debunked here at The Straight Dope).

As reported in More grit than glamour in spy writing, the Fleming centenary has been commemorated with Sebastian Faulks writing a new James Bond novel, Devil May Care, to be published by Penguin on May 28th. There's more at the official Ian Fleming Centenary site: events include a new radio dramatisation of Dr. No, and an Imperial War Museum exhibition, For Your Eyes Only, featuring memorabilia as well as focusing on Fleming's work in relation to the Cold War era in which the books were written. Apart from Devil May Care, associated books include a new Fleming biography, For Your Eyes Only: Ian Fleming and James Bond by Ben Macintyre; Final Fling by Kate Westbrook, the third in her Moneypenny Diaries series; and the UK publication of a graphic novel version of Charlie Higson's Young Bond novel SilverFin

Addendum, May 28: see Devil is in the detail for Mark Lawson's review in the Guardian.

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