Thursday 12 March 2020

New Folio release: THE SPY WHO LOVED ME

Ian Fleming's ninth James Bond novel THE SPY WHO LOVED ME is being released through The Folio Society today. It is there also there ninth James Bond release to date.

The novel was first released on April 16 1962 by Jonathan Cape. It is the shortest of Fleming novels and totally different to the rest of the cannon since it is written in first person by the main female character Vivienne Michel. Bond does only appear after two thirds of the book. To confuse the fans even more Fleming wrote a prologue saying that the story comes from the hands of Vivienne Michel.  It feels obvious that Fleming was tired of his normal way of writing and wanted to test something new.

THE SPY WHO LOVED ME received very poor reviews leading to Ian Fleming trying to prevent reprints of the hardback and banning publication of the paperback in United Kingdom. (That wish was then revoked as soon as Ian Fleming past away by his relatives.)

The reception to the novel was so bad that Fleming wrote to Michael Howard at Jonathan Cape, to explain why he wrote the book: "I had become increasingly surprised to find my thrillers, which were designed for an adult audience, being read in schools, and that young people were making a hero out of James Bond ... So it crossed my mind to write a cautionary tale about Bond, to put the record straight in the minds particularly of younger readers ... the experiment has obviously gone very much awry".

All of this lead to the fact that Ian Fleming only sold the title of THE SPY WHO LOVED ME to Eon Productions. He wanted the story dead and buried.

In 1967 Daily Express started to release the story as a comicstrip but with big changes to the storyline.

All of these facts actually make me looking forward to reading the book once again. I can't even remember what I thought of it the first time I read it.

The Folio Edition

Illustration ©2020 Fay Dalton from The Folio Society edition of The Spy Who Loved Me
For this edition The Folio Society has reintroduced Ian Fleming’s original prologue, which had been removed from all modern editions of the text. In an unusual move by the author, this short introduction suggests that the manuscript had been left on his desk by Vivienne Michel, the book’s narrator.
Fay Dalton’s atmospheric artwork continues to bring exquisite glamour and tension to the page of every volume. This edition features a series of daring illustrations that range from Michel and Bond’s romantic encounters to the blazing fire at Mr. Sanguinetti’s motel.

Available exclusively from


UK £36.95 US $62.95 Can $72.95 Aus $82.95

Production Details:

Bound in blocked cloth. Set in Miller Text with Folio Bold Condensed as display. 240 pages. 7 colour illustrations. Pictorial slipcase. 9˝x 6¼˝

Illustration ©2020 Fay Dalton from The Folio Society edition of The Spy Who Loved Me

Illustration ©2020 Fay Dalton from The Folio Society edition of The Spy Who Loved Me


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