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Literature / For Your Eyes Only

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The eighth James Bond book by Ian Fleming, and the first one to be a collection of short stories. First published in 1960.

  1. "From a View to a Kill": Bond is sent to France to aid in an investigation involving murder of a courier and the theft of the important papers he was carrying.
  2. "For Your Eyes Only": When close friends of M are murdered by Cuban gangsters, he sends Bond after them.
  3. "Quantum of Solace": At the party of a Jamaican governor, Bond is told a story of a failed marriage.
  4. "Risico": After he is sent to mission in Italy to sabotage the local drugtrade, Bond is caught between two feuding crimebosses.
  5. "The Hildebrand Rarity": After investigating possible Communist activity in Seychelles, Bond uses his remaining free time to join an expedition to find a specimen of the rare eponymous fish.

The second and the fourth story were turned into the twelfth James Bond film. Only the names of the first and the third story made their way to the films fourteen and twenty-two, and elements of the last one were implemented to the sixteenth.

"From a View to a Kill"

  • Beneath Notice: M thinks that perhaps the enemy has disguised himself as a gardener or garbage man or such. Someone hidden in plain sight.
  • Distressed Dude: Bond's life is saved by the Girl of the Week!
  • Dressing as the Enemy: The (possible) GRU agents' operation hinges on one of them tricking other couriers by dressing as them. Bond uses this tactic against the spies by dressing as the fake-courier and luring them out of their hideout.
  • Gay Paree: While most of the action takes place in the French countryside, a good chunk of the actual text is about Bond lounging around downtown Paris, with vast amounts of Scenery Porn and a lot snobbish griping about how the town just hasn't been the same since the War.
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  • Interservice Rivalry: A minor but running theme of the story is how MI-6 constantly chafes against the micromanagement of the NATO High Command in France.
  • Tree Cover: How the enemy spies have hidden themselves in NATO territory for so long - with a fake shrub leading to an underground chamber, complete with periscope.
  • Women Drivers: An Invoked Trope with a female agent driving a battered car to deter others from crowding her on the road.

"For Your Eyes Only"

  • The Chains of Commanding: Before M briefs Bond on his mission, he laments about responsibilities he has to hold in his position, as he is unsure about sending one of his men to enact personal revenge on his behalf. Bond takes the responsibility off his shoulders by endorsing his plan.
  • Creator Provincialism: The story is set in Vermont, where Fleming had spent a number of summers at his friend Ivar Bryce's Black Hollow Farm, which became the model for von Hammerstein's hideaway, Echo Lake.
  • It's Personal: Although it's ostensibly to deter other criminals from killing British citizens, M knows it's really about revenge. Judy Havelock also turns up to avenge her parents.
  • Sex for Services: Judy Havelock implies she discovered the location of von Hammerstein by sleeping with some criminals who'd done business with him.
  • Sue Donym: Bond, under the name 'Mr. James', meets a contact in Canada who introduces himself as 'Colonel Johns'.
  • These Hands Have Killed: Judy, contrary to Bond's usual prejudices, has no problem killing the head gangster with her bow. It's right after that she breaks down.
  • Those Wacky Nazis: von Hammerstein, now a landbuyer with strongarm tactics, was a Nazi officer in the second World War.
  • Title Drop: The title appears written on a folder handed to Bond.

"Quantum of Solace"


  • Dead Foot Leadfoot: Bond shoots Kristatos as he's making his getaway after his operation is destroyed... with the Lancia's wheels in the road ruts guiding it and his dead foot on the gas pedal, the car hurtles out of sight into the distance.
  • Dirty Communists: Bond learns that the drug operation he just destroyed was a Soviet ploy against Great Britain.
  • Funetik Aksent: The story's title is actually "Risk", rendered phonetically in Kristatos' accent.
  • Generic Ethnic Crime Gang: Kristatos' (Albanian) and Colombo's (Greek) gangs.
  • Harpoon Gun: Bond is greeted by a dozen men carrying harpoon guns after his meeting with Lisl.
  • Tuckerization: Fleming named Lisl after an ex-girlfriend from Kitzbühel in Austria, where he had travelled in the 1930s, while Columbo was named after Gioacchino Colombo, the Ferrari engine designer.

"The Hildebrand Rarity"

  • Asshole Victim: There is nothing nice about Milton Krest, as he looks down on non-American nationalities, treats his wife like dirt, and uses his expeditions for the Smithsonian as a tax dodge.
  • Compensating for Something: Bond suspects that Krest's overly macho output is a result of him compensating for his impotence.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: After hearing his death rattle, Bond finds Krest with the Hildebrand Rarity rammed into his throat.
  • Disposing of a Body: Bond dumps Krest's body overboard so that he won't get caught up in a murder investigation.
  • The Dog Bites Back: Bond suspects that Mrs. Krest killed her husband in revenge for his abusive treatment of her, although she never admits it and Bond never asks.
  • Domestic Abuse: Not only does Milton Krest verbally insult his wife, but he beats her with a stingray tail, which he names "The Corrector".
  • Everyone Is a Suspect: Bond can't decide between two very likely suspects: Liz Krest (who may have finally had enough of her husband's verbal/physical abuse) or Fidele Barbey (whose family Krest had insulted). He tries to draw them out, but neither one gives away any hints of being guilty. All three of them seem to make an unstated agreement to cover up Krest's murder because he was simply such a horrible person.
  • Hate Sink: Milton Krest is one of the most loathesome characters in the series, a belligerant, abusive, snobbish, prejudiced, narcissistic asshole. Fittingly, he gets one of the most unpleasant deaths in the series.
  • Kick the Dog: Krest poisons an entire river's worth of animals to kill one fish.
  • Mad Lib Thriller Title: The short story marks the only example in Fleming's works of the trope.
  • Make It Look Like an Accident: Upon discovering Krest's body, Bond throws him overboard and cleans up the scene of the crime, making it look as though he fell overboard after one of the ropes holding his hammock broke.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Krest brags how he is able to bribe his way to obtain the rare specimens for the Smithsonian if he needs to.
    • Barbey comments that he has enough influence in the Seychelles to make sure that neither Bond nor Liz will be put to very much trouble in an inquest.
  • Tuckerization: Milton was the code name of a Greek sea captain who ferried British soldiers and agents through German patrols and who received the Distinguished Service Order and an MBE, whilst Krest was the name of tonic and ginger beer Fleming drank in Seychelles.
  • Whip It Good: Krest punishes his wife for perceived slights on her place in his household by whipping her with a stingray tail.