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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A true classic, a must read!
This is where it all began, the classic "no holds barred" Bond. Every Bond fan and anyone else should read this book before watching another movie, particularly the Daniel Craig series.
Published 16 months ago by Alex Petruk

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Choppy First 00 Outing
This is where it all began, a very simple, unadorned tale of a British spy sent to destroy a Communist agent at the baccarat table. The first 007 story presents a nasty, misogynist, misanthropic Bond-a government assassin who is highly ambivalent about the role he plays in the Cold War. There's even one remarkable scene in which Bond asks what makes his government right,...
Published on Sept. 7 2003 by A. Ross


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A true classic, a must read!, March 8 2013
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This is where it all began, the classic "no holds barred" Bond. Every Bond fan and anyone else should read this book before watching another movie, particularly the Daniel Craig series.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great read, April 5 2014
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This review is from: Casino Royale (Paperback)
The first james bond novel I have read (also first in the series) and certainly not the last. This book was amazing. I am looking forward to purchasing the rest, one by one. I saved 7 dollars purchasing it from Amazon as well.
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5.0 out of 5 stars You will love the book more than the movie, Jan. 17 2014
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This review is from: Casino Royale (Paperback)
The Bond in the books is authentic, human, vulnerable, emotional, and thoughtful. The Bond in the film Casino Royale is too rigid, immortal, and relatively uncultured.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Casino Royale is My Favourite Bond, Sept. 29 2013
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Bootsy Bass (Winnipeg) - See all my reviews
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Its also the first one I ever read. TOTALLY unlike the Casino Royale movie of the 60's. The Danile Craig version is much closer. The book itself is pure Bond, as Ian Fleming intended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Place to Start, Oct. 17 2005
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Having never read an Ian Flemming novel, I felt it would be best to read his first book in the James Bond Series and the only one not yet made into a feature film. If you're only now beginning to read the novels, Casino Royale is the perfect book to read because it gives a bit of information about the James Bond Character. Through reading we find out how he became the man many of us know from the movies; such as his love of cars and how he obtained the 00 label. It's expected that the future Bond Film which is based on this book will also act as a prequel, so what better way to prepare yourself for the feature film then to read this fun novel that you can finish in about a day, and will certainly want you to follow up by reading the other novels in the series.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Choppy First 00 Outing, Sept. 7 2003
By 
A. Ross (Washington, DC) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Casino Royale (James Bond Novels) (Paperback)
This is where it all began, a very simple, unadorned tale of a British spy sent to destroy a Communist agent at the baccarat table. The first 007 story presents a nasty, misogynist, misanthropic Bond-a government assassin who is highly ambivalent about the role he plays in the Cold War. There's even one remarkable scene in which Bond asks what makes his government right, and what makes it moral for him to kill Britain's enemies. Unfortunately, his cynical self-examination is brushed under the table by his new CIA pal, Felix Leiter, and that's the last we hear of that! We learn that in the war, Bond killed a Japanese spy in New York (although the circumstances described strain credulity and common sense), and knifed a Dutch double-agent, earning him the 00 "Licensed to Kill" designation. Here, he's asked to break the bank of a French Soviet agent who has been gambling with his Moscow-provided bankroll.
Bond is sent to the fashionable French casino of the title to pose as a playboy gambler, and with the aid of beautiful British assistant Vesper Lynn, a French agent, and the CIA's Felix Leiter, ruin Le Chiffre at baccarat. Once you get over the sort of obvious question (if Le Chiffre is that dangerous an agent, why not just kill him yourself instead of going through this dangerous gambit of trying to bankrupt him, thereby forcing SMERSH to kill him?), the buildup and eventual battle on the green baize is quite gripping. Fortunately, the rules and strategy of baccarat are explained (it's a very very simple game), so that the reader can follow along, blow by blow. There's loads of atmosphere and tension, but the structure is a bit awkward and there are some rather bad flaws. One of these is that there's absolutely no reason for Vesper to be in the book other than to serve as a plot device and sex interest. All she does is get in Bond's way and distract him, and it's hard to imagine why she would ever really be given the assignment to back up Bond. It's also rather strange to find the Le Chiffre affair concluding 3/4 of the way through the book, with the last quarter devoted to the Bond/Vesper romance. And I won't even get into the lame "saved by the bell" device that occurs at the climax. All in all, the book exhibits the excellent eye for detail and atmosphere that characterize most of the Bond books, but Fleming is clearly just learning pacing and structure at this stage.
A final point of clarification, the Frenchman "Le Chiffre" is not an agent of SMERSH, as many reviewers seem to think. The fictional SMERSH, with its motto "death to spies", is an internal Soviet agency dedicated to counterespionage and making sure Soviet agents don't stray. As is explained early, Le Chiffre is forced to gamble because he's afraid that SMERSH will kill him if they discover he's blown his party funds on a bad business deal.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fleming's Firstborn, June 22 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Casino Royale (James Bond Novels) (Paperback)
I enjoyed this book BECAUSE of some things that others seem to have had trouble with. Bond's falling in love characterizes him as a more complete person than the womanizer of later books and films. Le Chifre's relatively early demise worked okay for me because of the romance. It had a mystery element all its own. And,of course there were plenty of the usual James Bond antics: car chases, elegant evenings, martini drinks, and the inevitable scene where James is tied up and abused by the bad guys. Bravo for this first novel. And good to know that, despite Mr. Fleming's passing, the genre lives on. I am impressed that newcomer Thomas Hopp, with his debut book The Jihad Virus, may be picking up the mantle of Fleming complete with car chases, love, bullets, and a hero tied up and tormented. The two stories are very similar in effect, if not in plot.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Meet 007 for the first time, May 5 2004
By 
Charles Wilcox (Brandon, Florida, USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Casino Royale (James Bond Novels) (Paperback)
First off, the literary character of James Bond as first imagined by Fleming is vastly different from the movie superspy with which most audiences are familiar. In "Casino Royale" Bond is all too human and even (gasp!) falls in love with his leading lady. Naturally, this is a doomed romance, but for the sake of those who have not read the story, there will be no further elaboration.
The story itself is fairly strait-forward. Bond goes to the infamous Casino Royale in an attempt to bankrupt a SMERSH agent. The book is more realistic than many of the films, in that some of the things Bond does (planting a hair in a drawer to make sure it has not been tampered with) are things a real spy might do.
My only problem with the story is that it seemed to drag on long after the main plotline has been resolved. I got the feeling that the final nine chapters of the book could have been resolved in two and an epiloge.
Still, it was an enjoyable book, and I plan to read most if not all of the other novels in the series, as I have been waiting a long time for these to become available again.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Introducing Mr. Bond - James Bond, April 30 2004
By 
J R Zullo (São Paulo, Brazil) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Casino Royale (James Bond Novels) (Paperback)
"Casino Royale" is Ian Fleming's first book featuring James Bond, unlike the movie series, where "Dr. No" is the first. I wanted to read Casino Royale because it is the only Bond book that was not made into a movie - if you don't consider the spoof movie with Peter Sellers, David Niven and Woody Allen.
To my surprise, in the books Bond is not the ultimate undestructible human being. He's a common enough person, who almost vomits when he sees the remains of a man who just exploded. Also, he is not that comfortable around women, he thinks about quitting his double-oh position, and he has a problem about being good or being evil. Surprising, huh? The biggest surprise is that he doesn't kill a single person in the entire book.
What I liked about "Casino Royale" was watching the developing of one of the greatest characters of the 20th century, as the author imagined him. The story is simple enough, about financialy breaking a communist agent in a french casino. Fleming writes simply, directly to the reader. There's a touch of the "noir" fashion - the sarcasm, the perfect women - and an unquestionable feeling of the fifties.
"Casino Royale" is a fast, simple read, and necessary to understand the Bond-universe.
Grade 8.0/10
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5.0 out of 5 stars What Every Man Wants To Be..., March 12 2004
By 
Konrei "Everything I need is right here" (Boca Raton, Florida and Brooklyn, New York) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Casino Royale (James Bond Novels) (Paperback)
CASINO ROYALE introduced the world to James Bond, and James Bond introduced the world to a style of living which, although fictional, is just SO attainable---just---that there isn't a man who hasn't tried or at least dreamed.
Ian Fleming's Bond is spare and tough, a kind of Spartan in a sack suit. In that regard he has influenced the cinematic Bond, but has never been the same character as portrayed by Connery, Lazenby, et. al. Fleming's writing is uncomplicated but finely crafted, and the story is dark and mordant with a strong central thread of tension and suspense which never wavers.
This earliest novel has an almost 1930's feel to it, with a healthy dose of immediate postwar Cold War paranoia. Things are never as they seem. CASINO ROYALE immediately introduces us to two of Bond's favorite preoccupations---women and casinos. Bond is paired with the incredibly sensuous Vesper Lynd, and the two set out to foil the plans of LeChiffre, the Russian agent fallen on hard times who is desperately trying to recoup some Moscow-funded business losses to the tune of 50 mil.
Bond beats LeChiffre at the gaming table and then LeChiffre beats Bond, who is naked and tied to a chair at the time. While the language is restrained, Fleming leaves us in no doubt as to our hero's predicament. Unlike his modern-day counterparts, Fleming doesn't have to be cartoonish or pornographic to draw us a prose-picture, and that, more than anything, recommends his work.
After so many years of being out-of-print in the U.S., Penguin finally had the verve and the nerve to release the complete Fleming ouevre in an attractive set with some really dynamic cover art.What a pleasure to see the Master returned at last.
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