Diamonds Are Forever by Ian Fleming
Reviewed by Jason Koivu
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
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 some nice descriptions of characters and places, but they do tend to slow down the action a bit. Or perhaps there just wasn't all that much action to begin with. I guess there was a shoot out and a tense, butt-clenching moment during a hot mud bath scene, but that didn't really even involve Bond.
There are also some racial issues with Diamonds.... I was listening to this on audiobook and during a moment when I wasn't paying the closest of attention, I thought I heard a distressingly racist passage. Racist dialogue is one thing, but when the writer includes it in the narrative it's an entirely different thing. I don't know, I could be wrong. I didn't bother going back to verify. Maybe I should have, but ya know, I just didn't feel like wallowing in that kind of mire. If I were black, I'd probably just stay away from the Bond series all together. For example, I know "negro" was once acceptable, but its usage comes from an error of an era that ought never to have happened and one that needs to be burned, buried and put in the past forever.
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