Ian Fleming's James Bond letters to sell at Bonhams



2015-11-03 15:55:56

Two insightful letters written by James Bond author Ian Fleming will be offered for sale at Bonhams next week.

The pair of letters were written in reply to a Dr G.R.G.D. Gibson who initially corresponded with the author about Bond's Aston Martin.

The first letter, dated June 1959, has a fascinating link to the most recent James Bond novel Trigger Mortis, written by novelist Anthony Horowitz and published in 2014.

In the letter Fleming refers to an idea he was working on, featuring Bond amongst the world of motor racing. "I will try to get around to it in due course and shall not be then surprised if I receive a sheaf of complaints from experts such as yourself" he wrote to the Doctor.

Although this idea never saw the light of day, Fleming did commit it to paper – as a treatment for an episode of a television series Murder on Wheels, in which Bond foils a German plot to kill real-life racing driver Stirling Moss.

The program was never made, but Horowitz was given access to the treatment and used it as the basis for his own novel as a tribute to Fleming. "I'm rather glad Fleming never wrote this story as it allowed me to do so - in Trigger Mortis - some fifty years later," he said, speaking about the upcoming auction. "I'm quite tempted to bid for this little piece of James Bond history!"

The second, earlier letter made mention of Bond's miraculous recovery in the 1958 book Dr No, having been apparently fatally poisoned by the Japanese Fugu fish at the end of From Russia With Love.

Both letters have recently been published in The Man with the Golden Typewriter, a collection of Fleming's correspondence compiled by his nephew Fergus Fleming.

The original copies will now cross the block at Bonhams' Fine Books and Manuscripts sale in London on November 11, where they're expected to sell for £3,000-£4,000 each.

Share on social media
Write a response...

The bookmarklet lets you save things you find to your collections.

Note: Make sure your bookmarks are visible.


Click and drag the Collect It button to your browser's Bookmark Bar.

collect it