Ian Fleming's sixth James Bond novel, Dr. No, was published on this day in 1958. With elements such as the villain's steel-pincer hands, a flame-throwing tractor/dragon, a killer centipede, death traps, tests of pain, and a climactic fight with a giant cephalopod, Dr. No is perhaps one the most Pulp-styled adventures in the series. And although it is not known if Fleming ever read Doc Savage stories (perhaps while visiting friend Ivar Bryce in Vermont?), it has been noted that Dr. No and other stories shared traits with earlier popular fiction- The Fantastic Island (1935) in particular. Regardless, the James Bond author was certainly enjoying the form and exercising his own wonderful flights of imagination when he penned this page-turner. Fleming's novel became the first to be filmed by producers Saltzman and Broccoli and various edits were made to the story (no giant squid this time!). The movie, starring Sean Connery and Ursula Andress, was released in 1962 (the same day as the first Beatles single!), and pushed the Bond presence in the culture toward an ultimate success during the great Spy Boom and beyond. Ian Fleming Publications celebrates the novel's release today in a 60th anniversary post of excerpts from period reviews and Fleming's text from the novel. Check it out at the Ian Fleming website. Related posts below.
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