The Spy Who Loved Me by Ian Fleming (Folio Society) – Review

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By @RogerCrow

For many fans of 007, The Spy Who Loved Me is synonymous with that submersible Lotus, steel-toothed villain Jaws, and the epic finale in Stromberg’s watery lair. And there a good chance hardcore James Bond fans will already have read Ian Fleming’s 1962 source novel, which is a very different beast to the 1977 blockbuster it spawned.

the spy who loved me ian fleming folio society book review coverFor the first and only time in the series, we witness the agent’s adventures through the eyes of a woman who finds him both frightening and alluring. It’s a nice spin on the saga, and even Bond fans who already have battered copies of the novel will be tempted by the Folio Society’s new volume.

“Real page-turner”

The edition features elegant binding inspired by the agent’s suits, and six rather excellent illustrations by artist Fay Dalton, all giving it the feeling of an early sixties adventure.

Fleming’s original prologue had been removed from all modern editions of the text, so it’s nice to see that reintroduced.

The short introduction suggests that the manuscript had been left on his desk by Vivienne Michel, the character who narrates the book.

The tale itself is a real page-turner, and if you’re a font geek like me, it’s set in Miller text, which makes it very easy on the eye.

the spy who loved me ian fleming folio society book review illustration

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

“Essential purchase”

There’s also a pictorial slipcase which ensures it’ll be the envy of all your friends on social media, because as we come to terms with a brave new world of social distancing, that’s a good excuse not to lend it to anybody.

All you need to do is dig out that copy of the soundtrack and settle in. When it comes to must-have 007 books, this will be an essential purchase. The fact my version came with a gorgeous notebook was an added bonus.

When it comes to definitive James Bond volumes, nobody does it better than the Folio Society, as this lovely version proves.

The Folio Society edition of Ian Fleming’s The Spy Who Loved Me, illustrated by Fay Dalton, is available exclusively from


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