Monday, 27 September 2021

[Review] - Diamonds Are Forever by Ian Fleming


The James Bond films haven't aged very well over the years. One in particular that comes to mind is 1971's Diamonds Are Forever. After declining to return as 007 in On Her Majesty's Secret Service, the late Sir Sean Connery came back for the rashly-filmed Diamonds Are Forever, where you could tell the actor phoned in his role for a $1.25 million paycheck. Now, this isn't the only reason why I don't like the movie. The dialogue is too cringy. The acting is laughable, and the directing is all over the place. It's just a bad movie, almost like a spoof.


During my 007 read-a-thon, I purposely skipped over Diamonds Are Forever (first published in 1954) until last. The 1971 movie left a bad taste in my mouth, and I was afraid the novel would be just as bad. As it turns out, that's not the case.

In the novel, James Bond goes undercover as a burglar-turned diamond smuggler. His assignment is to take down a smuggling ring that's bringing in diamonds from Sierra Leone to the United States. While using the name Peter Franks, he meets Tiffany Case. She's a member of The Spangled Mob, an American gang smuggling diamonds from Africa through international pipelines. When Tiffany isn't stealing diamonds, she works as a blackjack dealer at a Las Vegas hotel and casino that serves as the gang's headquarters, owned by brothers Jack and Seraffimo Spang. They also own a ghost town named Spectreville.

To make a long story short, Bond infiltrates The Spangled Mob with a little help from his ex-CIA friend, Felix Leiter. Bond beds Tiffany Case and rescues her from the henchmen Wint & Kidd. Then he takes down the Spang brothers.



Final Thoughts

Like most of Ian Fleming's 007 adventures, Diamonds Are Forever is slightly outdated but not quite as bad as its predecessors. It's not perfect, but at least it's better than the movie. Thank heavens!


The story is as tight as you possibly get. There are a few scenes that are typically 007 cliches. However, I would probably be disappointed if they weren't there. Bond needs to be Bond. Right?

Besides Bond, the best character is Tiffany Case, who is more fleshed out than how the film adaptation portrayed her.

Overall, Diamonds Are Forever turned out to be a decent read. Like I already said, it's not perfect, but if you can get past its flaws, it's a fun read.


1 comment:

  1. I'm not a fan of the movie version either. Erghh. Nice t ohear the book is better!

    These are making me really want to try the books!

    ReplyDelete

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