The famous spy character of James Bond first appeared physically in the book Casino Royale written by Ian Fleming. It was published in 1953. Post war readers were thrilled by he Fleming’s mix of colour, escapism, sadism, sex and food, and both the author and his creation went to become world-famous entities (especially the character).
The plot involves a Soviet agent, a member of SMERSH- an organisation similar to KGB. His name is Le Chiffre and he lives in France. He has run into a trouble with his organisation for lavish spending of his assigned funds. He knows that he is a dead man until he recovers the money and comes up with a plan. He tries to make money by winning in casinos using his gambling abilities. James Bond, the best gambler in MI6 is assigned to play against Le Chiffre at the gambling table and to win money from him, thus prompting SMERSH to assassinate him.
One thing in the text of the book that will come across almost every reader is that Fleming uses compact sentences. Yet his third person narrative is enthusiastic and entertaining. He describes every character in crisp detail, sometimes going into their backstories from where the enthusiasm part comes. Fleming draws a vivid picture of cars, clothing, drinks, food, cigarettes, seaside towns, and French casinos. In Casino Royale, he even gives the reader baccarat and roulette lessons. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: Casino Royale by Ian Fleming”