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Diamonds Are Forever

(James Bond (Original Series) #4)

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  18,682 ratings  ·  897 reviews
"Listen, Bond," said Tiffany Case. "It’d take more than Crabmeat Ravigotte to get me into bed with a man. In any event, since it’s your check, I’m going to have caviar, and what the English call 'cutlets,' and some pink champagne. I don’t often date a good-looking Englishman and the dinner’s going to live up to the occasion."

Meet Tiffany Case, a cold, gorgeous, devil-may-c
Paperback, 230 pages
Published 2003 by Penguin Group (first published 1956)
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Average rating 3.63  · 
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(A-) 81% | Very Good
Notes: James Bond fights evil American capitalists, escapes by road, air, rail and sea, and has his profanities bleeped in-text.
If I were a woman, I might conduct a séance, and then throttle the spirit of Ian Fleming. He’s not a bad guy, mind you, but just once, I’d like to see a female character give James Bond a run for his money. So far I’m still waiting for a return on my initial investment. And I know this is one investment that probably won’t pan out, but I can still hold onto a faint glimmer of false hope.

Vesper Lynd did come close, but she ultimately failed when paired next to Bond’s wit and charm. Tiffany Case,
Jason Koivu
Jul 31, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: crime, spy, fiction
Bond slips into the diamond smuggling market and the American mafia.

Not a bad installment in the Bond series. I don't recall ever seeing the movie version, so I can't say if they parallel much or at all, but I can say that Diamonds Are Forever makes for a fine little read.

It's not exactly the most exciting spy thriller ever. In fact, there were a number of spots through out the book that had me ho-humming. It seems like Fleming wanted to flex his prose muscles a bit with this one. There are som
Oct 05, 2018 rated it liked it
James Bond meets the Godfather.

Ian Fleming’s fourth Bond novel, first published in 1956, explores American crime, especially in the west and around Las Vegas. I thought of Lee Strasberg’s soliloquy in Francis Ford Coppola’s 1974 The Godfather II when he described Moe Green and the formation of Vegas. Similar to his excellent sports writing in Goldfinger, Fleming here shows a talent in describing horse racing and the gambling that surrounds the sport. As in most (all?) Bond novels there is also a
Feb 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Bond Fans
James Bond vs. the American Mafia. James Bond's beloved M gives him the assignment to destroy a diamond pipeline. In going after the diamond smugglers, Bond travels to America and is paired up with a woman working for the diamond smugglers - one Tiffany Case. He travels to New York City, Saratoga Springs, and then to Las Vegas.

The book, as so many Bond books do, focuses heavily on gambling. We have copious amounts of, not only card playing, but horse racing in this novel. If this bores you, I
Richard Derus
Aug 08, 2013 rated it liked it
Rating: 3.5* of five

Again a reminder that these reviews are for the movies by these titles, NOT Fleming's books. I wasn't at all drawn to the book I read, and I've since sampled a few others, and to me they're repellently dated.

So this 1971 outing is based on the 1956 novel, and marks the last *canonical* film Connery made. Never Say Never Again wasn't a Broccoli-produced film, and made use of a story not ever precisely made into a novel, so...

Jill St. John spends a good deal of time scantily cl
David Schaafsma
"Death is forever. But so are diamonds"—Fleming (who got the idea for the title from a diamond ad)

Okay, now, in Fleming’s fourth book, we see the Bond we know from the films begin to emerge more and more. The debonair, dashing Sean Connery guy, though in the book he is remains a little more complex, though no more the brooding existentialist he was on occasion in the first three books. In Diamonds we are back in the U. S., where the sophisticated Brit Fleming/Bond continues his snobbish disdain
aPriL does feral sometimes
The most important thing to know about these James Bond novels is they are almost nothing like the movies. Bond is emo, error-prone, narcissistic, and almost always grandiose in his thinking about his skills when he is not worried about them - very very surprisingly bipolar than what the movies have primed us readers to expect. The action events in the books, which are indeed mostly copied or technologically enhanced in the movies, happens over a longer span of time. However, some novels are not ...more
May 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
"Slowly the sting slid home into its sheath and the nerves on the poison sac at its base relaxed. The scorpion had decided. Greed had won over fear."

I won't copy all of the opening scene of Diamonds Are Forever, but this is one of the reasons why I keep reading this series - Fleming's ability to write nature scenes is phenomenal. They even make up for his writing about what passes for romance in these Bond novels. But I'll get to that later.

In Diamonds Are Forever, James Bond is tasked to invest
So because George Lazenby couldn't make it as James Bond in the previous movie, Sean Connery was back for Diamonds Are Forever, which the trailer (behind the link) points out a whole lot. "Hey guys, we made a mistake with that other guy, but look! Connery! COME BACK!"

Also making a come back with this movie was Shirley Bassey singing the theme song, as she did for Goldfinger. (The theme songs are nearly as important to me as the films themselves.) For those of us who pay attention (or at least re
Paul Alkazraji
Feb 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Diamonds are forever
Rough diamond Connery.

To discover just who is filching British diamonds from an African mine, James Bond is sent undercover along a smuggling pipeline to follow it to the end. With Fleming you always get well-researched background detail rendered with a journalist’s eye, but for me the sojourn in the racing world of Saratoga slowed the story down a furlong or two in less interesting territory.

That said, the pace soon picks up as Bond flees through the desert near Las Vegas with gangster ‘

Probably the weakest Bond novel in the series to this point which was somewhat surprising to me as the film is a fond favourite (who would have thought that the screen and page could differ?!). This more felt like Bond visits various locations with a little bit of spying on the side.

The setup is no different to any other, Bond meets M and gets his mission (I do enjoy the relationship these two have), Bond sets off on mission and finds a lady to admire and try to woo (book Bond is not as sua
Nov 11, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook, audiogo
I really enjoyed this a lot. Once again the book is far superior to the film with Fleming's excellent writing. Damien Lewis is just brilliant with the narration, a real master at the different accents throughout.
Jesse A
Sep 15, 2015 rated it liked it
The blandest Bond volume I've read. Normal amounts of sexism, imperialism, and racism. Rather dull.
Brian Poole
Jun 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Diamonds Are Forever is a spy classic that brought James Bond back to the U.S.

On the trail of a diamond smuggling pipeline, originating in Africa and moving through London on its way to New York and Las Vegas, Bond goes undercover as a diamond mule. He works with the beautiful but damaged Tiffany Case, hoping to use her connections to infiltrate the vicious Spangled Mob. Old pal Felix Leiter, a former CIA operative who’s moved on to Pinkertons, helps out along the way. Bond has a misadventure at
May 17, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: problem-authors
Sometimes I feel guilty about reading the James Bond novels, since Bond and Fleming are racist misogynistic snobs. But sometimes the action pulls you in and you overlook things like ridiculous personality flaws among all the protagonists. With this book, I have no reason to feel guilty, except that I finished it. This is a terrible book with tons of padding and travelogue in between the brief action sequences; it reads like a novella that Fleming's editors told him to triple in size. The final a ...more
Oct 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
How do I find myself with feelings of sadness for James and his life of international duplicity? Still, after 4 Bond novels, the end of the adventure leaves me with soft feelings for the often misogynist 007. Who knew???

This was a well crafted piece. Good story, somewhat more assertive female foil and nice continuity. Now to #5.
Dan Young
Mar 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Best one yet. Still seems a little shallow in the character department, and Bond falling deeply and helplessly in love every book is getting a touch old.
Feb 08, 2009 rated it really liked it
One of the strengths of Fleming - which I'm discovering on re-reading these books - is his descriptions of locations. Mid-way through Diamonds Are Forever, Bond goes to Vegas. The portrayal of the desert town with sand blowing over the strip is incredibly well done and really places the reader there. I suppose it isn't just his sense of location, he is also good at capturing the time in which he is writing, really bringing the fifties to live. As oppossed to say a Mike Hammer novel (a character ...more
Jan 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I decided to read through all the James Bond books from the very beginning of Fleming's now wildly popular and evolved character. I'm glad I stuck with it because by book four Fleming finally hit his stride. The first two books had great plots but the writing was clunky. The third book was a mess and I was discouraged. Now I'm revived!

Diamonds are Forever comes in at a tight 175 pages, and it keeps Fleming's typical plot pace but the writing is much smoother and Fleming finally discovered how to
Mar 12, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of the weaker Bond novels in the series, this installment is more akin to a crime novel and a spy thriller that you'd normally associate with Fleming's famous agent.

007 is tasked into tracking down a diamond smuggling organization from Africa through Europe to eventually Las Vegas.

The discrimination of Bonds travels are fascinating and one of my favorite aspects of the book.
There's quite long sections where he's visiting a casino and a racetrack.

Even though this isn't the strongest entry in
Aug 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hmm this is turning into a yearly re-read I see. I was once again confused by one part of the ending so that's a good sign re: future re-reads - if I forget absolutely everything I can enjoy the re-reading more i GUESS. The middle part of DAF (together with, you know, almost all of LALD) might be my favourite Fleming-Bond-writing because it's just Bond & his pal faffing about at the horse races. Good times. ...more
Nov 15, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller-spy
Diamonds are being smuggled from Africa through to the American Mafia. Who do you call in to smash this nefarious ring? James Bond, naturally.

Yes, somehow James Bond is called upon to do what the FBI and the CIA are apparently unwilling (or unable) to do. Of course, in this modern age of witnessing just how little the federal government can accomplish (and accomplish well), it is really no surprise the James Bond can, singlehandedly, do more than any agency of the American government can do. Ian
Nov 09, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, spy
Another entertaining Bond adventure which finds 007 on the trail of an American diamond smuggling ring. It takes him from London to New York and ultimately to Las Vegas. On the way he encounters old CIA pal, Felix Leiter who now works for Pinkertons and makes the acquaintance of lovely Tiffany Case. As always there is lots of action, but many nice moments with Miss Case. Entertaining and an exciting read. It's been fun working through the Bond series again.
Sean O
Jun 29, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bond goes from London to Saratoga to Vegas to an Ocean Liner and finally to Africa to catch an American gang smuggling diamonds.

There’s a horse race, blackjack and roulette, sinister mud baths, and a Wild West ghost town to boot.

The problem with Bond when he goes to America is Fleming doesn’t really like America. When he writes about America he can't stop talking about African-Americans in a disparaging way. It's better when he doesn't have to talk about race and confines his prejudices to Ger
Randell Green
Sep 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Enjoyed it 7/10. During it’s day, it must have been wonderful to read each book and sail to new destinations. Dan Brown types of adventures that gave everyone a glimpse of new lands. Fleming is a better writer than advertised. 🇬🇧📚🇬🇧
Dec 08, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was more like the 007 we love from the movies. Though still not there and too focused on different modes of gambling. The slowish pace remains the issue though the writing is getting better compared to the previous books and which is to be expected. Bond again travels to USA and does work undercover for some time and then the 007 appears. Nice Femme Fatale (Tiffany Case) but none are deadly so far.

So now onto the next adventure, you can start your Bond journey too and then Keep on Reading.
Nov 25, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2012
My least favorite Ian Fleming thus far. The movie was Über-campy but the book was worse. Maybe I'm just spoiled with Chandler, Hammett, Thompson, et al. Anyway, Diamonds are Forever made me want to rethink my whole 'read Ian Fleming from A to Ω' plan. To be fair, it did pick up a little bit towads the end, but it was uneven, with a plodding narrative. Gah!
Another excellent instalment in the James Bond series. I have probably read these about three times now.
Erin Cataldi
May 24, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2020, stout-stories, own
Quite different than the movie, and filled with sexist, racist, and homophobic content. However, this was written in the fifties so I won't judge it through today's lens. Plot wise - I thought there would be much more about the diamonds, but really James Bond is seeing how far down the criminal pipeline he can go. They're pretty sure the source of illegal diamonds is from French Guinea (or around there) and they know they end up in America. It's up to Bond to pose as one of the low level carrier ...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Ian Lancaster Fleming was a British author, journalist and Second World War Navy Commander. He was a grandson of the Scottish financier Robert Fleming, who founded the Scottish American Investment Trust and the merchant bank Robert Fleming & Co.

Fleming is best remembered for creating the character of James Bond

Other books in the series

James Bond (Original Series) (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • Casino Royale (James Bond, #1)
  • Live and Let Die (James Bond, #2)
  • Moonraker (James Bond, #3)
  • From Russia With Love (James Bond, #5)
  • Doctor No (James Bond, #6)
  • Goldfinger (James Bond, #7)
  • For Your Eyes Only (James Bond, #8)
  • Thunderball (James Bond, #9)
  • The Spy Who Loved Me (James Bond, #10)
  • On Her Majesty's Secret Service (James Bond, #11)

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