F.R.'s Reviews > Doctor No

Doctor No by Ian Fleming
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May 31, 09


It's curious that Broccoli and Saltzman chose this book to film first, as it's that odd kind of thriller which is not particularly thrilling. Yes, there are episodes that contain the ingredients of suspense and tension, but they are narrated without any great sense of excitement. Was Fleming losing his passion already? (A point for the prosecution to consider: his evocation of Jamaica - which he knew very well - is no where near as good as some of places Bond visits in earlier books.)

Bond isn't as emotionally open or rounded a character as he was in previous instalments. In fact it could be argued that this book set the template for Connery's performance (and that he rarely moved out of it in any of the films). The other characters are paper thin, including Honey Ryder and the ridiculous Dr No (this is the most over the top villain yet). There are also some very unreconstructed views of the people of Jamaica.

That being said there are some excellent scenes (the opening is brilliant) but it's something of a disappointment after From Russia With Love.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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Randy Doctor No was actually his first Bond. Maybe the lack of passion you see is that of a first time novelist learning his trade.


F.R. It's the sixth published book, and does follow on from the others so I think it was written after them. Certainly Casino Royale - which was first published - feels more like a debut novel than this.


Randy My apologies. I don't know where my head was. I know better and can't imagine what I was thinking. Senility maybe?



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