Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Octopussy & the Living Daylights (James Bond, #14)” as Want to Read:
Octopussy & the Living Daylights (James Bond, #14)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Octopussy & the Living Daylights

(James Bond (Original Series) #14)

3.56  ·  Rating details ·  6,949 ratings  ·  402 reviews
Librarian Note: This is most likely one of the editions that includes the fourth story, 007 in New York. To see the other editions with only three stories, see

Whether it is tracking down a wayward major who has taken a deadly secret with him to the Caribbean or identifying a top Russian agent secretly bidding for a Fabergé egg in a
Paperback, 120 pages
Published April 6th 2004 by Penguin Books (first published June 23rd 1966)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Octopussy & the Living Daylights, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Octopussy & the Living Daylights

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.56  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,949 ratings  ·  402 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Octopussy & the Living Daylights (James Bond, #14)
(B+) 76% | Good
Notes: James Bond, in each episode, searches for people: to apprehend, to identify, to shoot and to warn, with mixed results.

- 12 fresh eggs
- Salt and pepper
- 5-6 oz. of fresh butter

Break the eggs into a bowl. Beat thoroughly with a fork and season well. In a small copper (or heavy bottomed saucepan) melt four oz. of the butter. When melted, pour in the eggs and cook over a very low heat, whisking continuously with a small egg whisk.

While the eggs are slightly more moist than you would wish for eating, remove the pan from heat, add rest of butter and continue whisking for half a minute, addi
Oct 14, 2018 rated it liked it
This is to Ian Fleming’s Bond stories as Coda is to Led Zeppelin – a thin collection of what’s left after it’s over.

Led Zeppelin was no more after the demise of their drummer John Bonham in 1980. Coda was released in 1982 featuring a collection of previously unreleased tracks from various sessions throughout the band’s twelve-year reign as metal gods. Ian Fleming passed away in 1964 and Octopussy and The Living Daylights was published posthumously in 1966 after Fleming had taken the world by sto
Feb 09, 2014 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Bond fans
This was going to be dirty work and Bond, because he belonged to the Double-0 Section, had been chosen for it. Perversely, Bond wanted to force M to put it in black and white. This was going to be bad news, dirty news, and he didn't want to hear it from one of the Section officers, or even from the Chief of Staff. This was to be murder. All right. Let M bloody well say so.

Four Bond short stories. None are very interesting.

This is a short story about a man, living in Jamaica, who sto
Apr 25, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I wasn't too thrilled by these stories.Octopussy is totally different from the Roger Moore movie of the same name.The movie was set in India,with a Sikh as a villain.It wasn't all that great but was certainly better than this short story.

In the story,Bond is again an afterthought.It is about the trials and tribulations of a former war hero and Bond is sent to Jamaica to apprehend him,but he has very little to do with the story.It is very forgettable.Also,no Bond girl here.Fleming goes on for a w
3 stars for the short stories.

5 stars for Tom Hiddleston's narrations.

The short stories were good. Here we have Octopussy, The Property of a Lady, and The Living Daylights. All three have very different tones to them and all have a different version of Bond.

Octopussy was probably my favorite. Bond is actually only a minor character and the story really centers around Major Dexter Smythe, a retired WWII hero who is implicated in a murder that involved a stash of Nazi gold. Smythe is a very intere
aPriL does feral sometimes
Number 14 in the James Bond series, 'Octopussy and The Living Daylights' is the last Book penned by Ian Fleming in the series. It consists of four short vignettes:


An officer succumbs to a moment of greed after World War II in collecting a couple of bars of Nazi gold, a crime which catches up to him.

-The Property of a Lady

A surprising payday for a KGB spy! and one of the few actual spying cases done by James Bond in this series.

-The Living Daylights

An East-Germany escape, a cello-playin
A collection of four short stories. Two share titles with James Bond movies, but the substance is nothing like the subject matter of the stories. Will review more later.
Bill Lynas
Apr 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Ian Fleming shows that the James Bond adventures work equally well in the short story format. While not perhaps on such an epic scale as other 007 tales all three episodes are written with Fleming's superb journalistic style.
David Dalton
Dec 26, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spies
I finally finished reading all of the Ian Fleming James Bond books. I picked up a paperback collection of all the Fleming Bond books years ago from Sam's. But never got to this last book. Till I finally picked it up via Kindle and now I knocked it out. Another collection of short stories.

Most of the time, the Bond movies have little to do with the actual books, like Goldeneye (not even a short story), or The World is Not Enough (family motto mentioned in a Bond book). Three of the stories in thi
Sep 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Audio fine short stories provided me with a great way to put 007 to rest.
Jun 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
When English author Ian Fleming passed away on August 12, 1964, at the age of 56, he had not yet put the finishing touches on his final James Bond novel, "The Man With the Golden Gun." Oh, sure, he'd gotten a first draft down on paper--working at his Oracabessa, Jamaica winter home called Goldeneye, as usual--but the plethora of convincing detail that had been the hallmark of the previous dozen Bond books was sadly missing from the final product. And so, when the novel was ultimately released so ...more
Again, paralyzed with options! Here we have Octopussy (the movie came out in 1983) and The Living Daylights which came out... later... with Timothy Dalton. But these are novellas, they're short, and apparently they were published together in this short story collection. (Though I beg to ask - can you have a "short story collection" when said collection includes only two stories? I feel like that's cheating.)

This is an exceptionally short book, even with both stories together. I think it clocks i
Roxana Chirilă
So, when I think of James Bond, I think of this super-spy guy who solves his missions by killing enemies, while getting all the dangerous, beautiful women.

As such, this collection came as a bit of a surprise. Firstly, because it's 142 pages long (which is short) and contains three short stories and a thing (we'll come back to the thing a bit later). Secondly, because Bond falls in love with one single woman in the entire book, and she's on the other side - on the other side politically, and on t
Apr 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was very surprised by this audiobook. I had as certain idea of what "James Bond" is... and this wasn't it.

I've read spy stories, and thrillers, and these stories were much more like THAT. These stories are from the '60s and were more introspective and character based than I expected from a "James Bond" novel. Somehow I expected something full of mindless action, car chases and meaningless sex. I bought it because I enjoy the sound of Tom Hiddleston's voice-- I'd listen to him read the phone b
May 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Ian Fleming and 007
A short story collection which was released after the death of Ian Fleming.

'007 in New York': Is more a bit of tourist information than an actual short story. But it shows Flemings skill of description, but here it lacks his usual strength which makes boring stuff come alive.

'Octopussy': This story is not a 007 adventure but more a tale of WOII where a soldier steals from the Nazi's. But while doing that he makes a mistake which brings 007 on his doorstep. An impressive little tale well told. (
A posthumous collection of the remaining Bond short stories: "Octopussy", "The Property of a Lady", "The Living Daylights" and "007 in New York". Having read this far it would be a shame not to complete the set...
Jun 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A collection of four James Bond short stories. In two of the stories, Bond acts as a detective tracking down people to solve a mystery. Though, in the first of those stories, "Octopussy," the antagonist is the point of view character and Bond proves to be a minor player. "The Living Daylights" gives us some Cold War suspense as Bond is called in to act as a sniper supporting an agent returning from East Berlin. In the final story, "007 in New York," Bond essentially has to deliver bad news to an ...more
The other day I came across this audiobook of James Bond short stories narrated by Tom Hiddleston.

I was like, well hello there.


Had no idea that he did this! So I checked it out from my library, listened to it, and enjoyed it.

I’ve seen all the Bond films and have always thought about reading an Ian Fleming book someday. Discovering that Tom Hiddleston had narrated these short stories was all the push I needed, and icing on the cake. I was happy to see that two of the three he narrated happened to
Feb 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of the Bond film series
Recommended to Michael by: Jeff Hancock
I really do enjoy the Bond short stories because in the absence of broad-reaching plots and numerous characters, Fleming gives us insight into the character that's difficult to convey on film.

Octopussy took me by the greatest surprise as it has nothing at all to do with the film bearing its name (although the film did happily borrow significant elements from The Property of a Lady and Moonraker), and indeed added more fuel for Spectre than anything. What we have here is a fairly dark tale that s
"Whether it is tracking down a wayward major who has taken a deadly secret with him to the Caribbean or identifying a top Russian agent secretly bidding for a Fabergé egg in a Sotheby's auction room, Bond always closes the case—with extreme prejudice."

Ahh, the world of international espionage. Thanks to Fleming, being a spy has never been so attractive. He single-handedly painted the otherwise secret world of Mi5 operatives in gold gilt. The genre itself became synonymous with the Christian Dio
Jun 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
The final book in the original Bond series consists of three short stories. These were uneven. The least interesting as a story was the one about Bond eyeing bidders in an auction. This reads like Fleming was doing a kind of product placement story highlighting the action and intrigue of a fine arts auction. In another review I read this was originally published in an auction house magazine, so there you go.

I enjoyed the other two stories more. In Octopussy, Bond really plays a bit role – he’s
James Bond started out as a literary character and soon turned into a movie franchise, becoming a “pop culture” icon in the process. I have watched a few Bond movies, discreetly enjoying them, without really becoming a fan. Perhaps that is why I was never really tempted to explore Fleming’s originals. I now realise that this slim volume of four posthumously published short stories are quite atypical of the Bond oeuvre and possibly not the best introduction to Fleming’s work. In “Octopussy”, Bond ...more
John Spencer
Jun 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
I like this book not just because I'm a Bond fan but more because of the descriptions of a world gone by. The start of the cold war and a post war Britain still in possession of its colonies populated by wealthy ex-pats enjoying the swansong of Empire. They and Fleming are blissfully unaware of the changes coming and it this that lends this and the other bond books not just a touch of nostalgia for the reader but might also be part of the historical record of a point in time. All the better for ...more
Ellie Spencer
This Bond short stories were enjoyable enough. But they are never long enough to create enough tension/excitement or enjoyment of the characters (which is part of what I love in the Bond novels). They were a nice and quick read though and I’m looking forward to trying James Bond’s recipe for scrambled eggs!
Although I remain largely unimpressed by James Bond in the short story format, these selections are slightly better and more memorable than the ones featured in For Your Eyes Only. "Octopussy" is the sole standout, partly because of its unorthodox format of being told from villain Smythe's point of view and in flashback. "The Living Daylights" has an intriguing setup, but feels like a prologue to a much bigger story and ends before it really goes anywhere. As for the other two, meh. The best thi ...more
This audio book includes the novella Octopussy as well as three other James Bond stories. I've seen many of the films, but until now had never "read" any of the Ian Fleming novels. During a recent road trip, I decided to start with this because I'm a fan of the reader. Hiddleston reads with a clear, strong voice, changing his cadence or accent as the characters change. I look forward to hearing him read other books.

It probably wasn't a good idea to start with the very last, posthumous collection
Dec 10, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: audiobook
Tom Hiddleston really gave a fun reading to the material. He created distinct accents and personalities for each character. I liked his take on Dexter could tell he was having a lot of fun recording the stories. He reads at a slightly slower pace than I tend to like (I usually like narrators who don't pause and act out the characters' deliberations), but he injects a lot of personality in the readings and this collection is under 4 hours long.

I think each story in this collection h
Rob Thompson
Jul 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
A slender collation of Bond short stories published in 1966, two years after Fleming had died. It comprises Octopussy, The Property of a Lady, The Living Daylights and 007 In New York. Viewers of the Bond movies will recognise two of the titles and a lot of the plot elements. The character of Hannes Oberhauser, an Austrian climbing and skiing instructor who acted like a father to Bond, is also introduced. Oberhauser features in the movie Spectre.

The stories themselves are enjoyable and are some
Steve Payne
Jun 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Fleming's last book is made up of three uncollected short stories left unpublished in book form at the time of his death, in 1964. Some editions also include a little piece called '007 In New York' - which is more a brief travelogue, written it has been said to appease his American readers, after being uncomplimentary towards New York in his 'Thrilling Cities' essays.

For me, the first story, 'Octopussy' is the best of the three. Set on Fleming's home island of Jamaica, where Bond meets a war cri
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Play Book Tag: Octopussy & The Living Daylights - Ian Fleming - 3 Stars 2 11 Oct 07, 2019 11:47AM  
Not Impressed 11 21 Jul 21, 2012 02:37PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Colonel Sun (James Bond, #15)
  • For Special Services (John Gardner's Bond, #2)
  • Icebreaker (John Gardner's Bond, #3)
  • Devil May Care (James Bond, #36)
  • License Renewed (John Gardner's Bond, #1)
  • Nobody Lives Forever (John Gardner's Bond, #5)
  • Role of Honor (John Gardner's Bond, #4)
  • Trigger Mortis
  • Licence to Kill (John Gardner's Bond, #9)
  • James Bond, the Spy Who Loved Me
  • Win, Lose or Die (John Gardner's Bond, #8)
  • No Deals, Mr. Bond (John Gardner's Bond, #6)
  • Solo
  • Scorpius (John Gardner's Bond, #7)
  • Forever and a Day
  • GoldenEye (John Gardner's Bond, #15)
  • The Man from Barbarossa (John Gardner's Bond, #11)
  • Star Trek: More Beautiful Than Death
See similar books…
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)
  • Diamonds Are Forever (James Bond, #4)
  • 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)

Related Articles

The prolific and beloved author John Grisham, known for his courtroom thrillers, is back this month with a new pageturner, A Time for Mercy,...
32 likes · 5 comments
“Look my friend, I've got to commit a murder tonight. Not you. Me. So be a good chap and stuff it, would you?” 7 likes
“Because people are very careful with the secrets of their own business doesn’t mean that they’ll be careful with the secrets of yours.” 2 likes
More quotes…