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  • Octopussy and The Living Daylights, and Other Stories

  • James Bond, Book 14
  • Written by: Ian Fleming
  • Narrated by: Tom Hiddleston, Lucy Fleming
  • Length: 3 hrs and 39 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The last book written by Ian Fleming, but by no means the least. In Octopussy, a talented but wayward British major pays a high price when his wartime past catches up with him, while in The Property of a Lady, a Fabergé egg leads Bond to a KGB spy. In The Living Daylights, Bond has a perilous rendezvous in sniper's alley between East and West Berlin, and 007 in New York (read by Lucy Fleming) sees him sent to America to warn an ex - MI6 operative about a dangerous liaison. All part of the job for 007.

This audiobook includes an exclusive bonus interview with Tom Hiddleston.

Blackstone Audio, Inc. James Bond and 007 are registered trademarks of Danjaq LLC, used under license by Ian Fleming Publications Ltd

©1966 Ian Fleming Publications Ltd. (P)2014 Blackstone Audio

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What listeners say about Octopussy and The Living Daylights, and Other Stories

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Fleming's Genius On Display (at times)

It is small wonder that dozens of authors have borrowed James Bond as a character and written their own takes on the superspy. 007 is sophisticated, sexy, and testosterone-fuelled violent - he actually exudes 'Braveheart'/ 'Gladiator' coolness. Having listened to all 14 of the original Ian Fleming offerings in the 'James Bond (Celebrity Recordings)' series, I can conclude that the author had a ton of fun writing the character, too. Everyone's favorite Secret Agent is endlessly entertaining.. while being simultaneously cartoonish and relatably vulnerable.
This collection of short stories ('Octopussy', 'The Property Of A Lady', 'The Living Daylights', and '007 In New York') is little different. It demonstrates Fleming's love for his character - putting him in scenarios set in places varying from the streets of Cold War-era Berlin to the coral reefs of Jamaica to the auction chambers of Sotheby's. Bond makes both superficial appearances and plays central roles in these vignettes.
Less fortunately, these particular shorts are variable in quality - Fleming writes some wonderfully descriptive scenes and clever espionage-based tales.. but also some relatively plodding stretches of overly-cerebral narrative and banal discussion (part of '007 In New York' is a description of how to make scrambled eggs - I'm not kidding)

The narration in this audiobook is likewise variable. Tom Hiddleston (best known as 'Loki' in the MCU) provides contributions that are incredible - exhibiting near flawless diction, timbre, cadence, and tone - but Lucy Fleming's amateur status as a reader is on full display. The producers should have stuck with Hiddleston for all four episodes.

Connery - Lazenby - Moore - Dalton - Brosnan - Craig..

As a fan of the movies, I have to say that the casting choices from filmmakers were brilliant (although I admit that I generally pictured Daniel Craig the most while listening to the novels). These audiobook presentations, however, demonstrate a character that would be impossible for *any* actor/screenplay writer to fully portray.
Fleming's surprisingly complex James Bond belongs in the library of any reader who appreciates entertainment-oriented Spy Fiction. This 7.5/10 star compendium - the last in the original written series - belongs there, too.

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Loved these stories

What a great quick listen….the narration by Tom Hiddleston is on point….I loved it…worth the download

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Absolutely Loved It!!!

Great stories from the brilliance of Ian Fleming.
Narrator was impeccable. Beautiful accent, absolutely perfect for this book. He drew me in like no other narrator ever has. I'm a pretty tough sell for audible books as I'm a speed reader with high retention and listening to someone read so much slower than I can read usually drives me absolutely bat**** crazy! However, this narrator did nothing of the sort In fact, it was very relaxing and comforting to listen to this. I will definitely be listening to this again and again!! And looking for more books by this narrator! I hope he can live up to my expectations from this book!!!

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  • Dani
  • 2014-09-16

Enjoyable stories, excellent narration'

I have to confess that I found and then immediately downloaded this title by typing Tom Hiddleston's name in the search box on Audible. I have been a long-time fan of the James Bond movies and have been encouraged to read the books so this seemed like a complete no-brainer. Tom Hiddleston voicing 007? Yes, please! This title contains 3 stories: The Living Daylights, Octopussy and The Property of A Lady. I knew by the length of the download that these were fairly short, but there is quite a lot of detail in each one. I was surprised that they were not done solely in James Bond's pov, which I found disappointing at first, but I quickly got used to it thanks to Mr. Hiddleston's fantastic narration. The stories have sparked my interest in listening to more of James Bond's adventures. After experiencing Mr. Hiddleston flawlessly voice a Chinese character, I find myself wondering if there is anything he doesn't do well! I've seen him do impressions of his fellow actors on YouTube and after listening to this title I am convinced he has a golden opportunity to add audiobook narrator to his list of skills. Someone please tell this man the world needs him to read more audiobooks! Please?

25 people found this helpful

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  • Troy
  • 2015-04-25

The Final Fleming 007 Stories

And so we come to the end of Ian Fleming’s original run of James Bond. This is a short story collection, published post-mortem at the height of the spy craze that was caused as a direct result of the successful 007 film franchise. Sean Connery had been in four Bond films to that point, with a fifth on the way, and by this point it was assumed (rightfully so) that regardless of any legal issues from Thunderball, 007 was going to live on for quite some time. Cashing in with the last of Fleming’s remaining stories would have been an easy call to make, especially since Fleming himself had planned to do so anyway before his untimely death.

As with For Your Eyes Only, this collection is largely more about Bond's character than big missions against supervillains. There are four stories here: Octopussy, The Property of a Lady, The Living Daylights, and 007 in New York. Each are very different in their tone, but all of them express sides of Bond's character and Fleming's interests in ways that Fleming has given us before, so the result is a comfortable and familiar end to the original canon.

Tom Hiddleston is a magnificent narrator on the first three of these stories, with his only flaw being that perhaps he's far too charismatic for Fleming's version of Bond. Even so, it's clear he has a great deal of fun with the character voices and performance opportunities. In keeping with my running commentary on how to pronounce "007," Hiddleston proves he's a proper fanboy and gives us a true "double-oh seven" instead of the awkward "oh-oh seven."

The fourth and final story is narrated by Lucy Fleming. While her range isn't nearly as broad as Hiddleston's, it doesn't need to be as the last story is mostly a fluff piece. Since this these stories are her heritage, and since she's producer of this 007 Reloaded series, it's only right to have her for the final tale.

All in all, this collection of short stories is a fun and satisfying end to Fleming's writings. It seems strange to come to the end at long last, but all good things...

10 people found this helpful

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  • I am a Demon hunter
  • 2015-02-14

Two words-Tom Hiddleston!

What can I say-it's Tom Hiddleston narrating a book. If he wants 2 read an instruction manual for computer programing-I'd buy it! On a serious note, it's not a bad delivery-there are better narrators out here. He can sometimes sound dead-pan & stiff but overall enjoyable!

9 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2021-08-09

Winding Down

"Octopussy and The Living Daylights, and Other Stories" is the second collection of short stories in the 007 series. It was published posthumously, and as such, these stories are the final ones written by Ian Fleming, though the film series continues with original James Bond adventures. Like those in "For Your Eyes Only," these short stories are good, but none reach the heights of the novels. Perhaps this is due to the shorter length and their deviations from the Bond formula, but there are refreshing in their novelty. The best story in this collection, in my opinion, in "The Living Daylights," a tense story about a sniper mission to protect a high-value agent. "Octopussy" and "The Property of a Women" are also quite entertaining, however. Tom Hiddleston's narration is as good as you would expect from an actor of his caliber, and interestingly, Lucy Fleming narrates the final story—a brief addendum about James Bond's visit to New York City.

1 person found this helpful

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  • chris
  • 2019-10-15

where's Martin Jarvis?

anothet story that would have been better told by Martin Jarvis. Tom could use more practice in voice acting, I think. it was kinda bland.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Tracy M. Lentz
  • 2018-11-15

Octopuses and The Living Datlights, and Other Stories

Ian Fleming delivers as always with his tales of the legendary James Bond. Tom Hiddleston is nothing less than brilliant as he reads life into each character with his variations of voices and tones. Definitely worth listening to! My only complaint is that there just weren't enough of these stories for Tom to read!

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  • Dena Laxson
  • 2017-12-23

Better than watching!

I Love Ian Fleming's work. Tom Hiddleston could make toothpaste ingredients sound captivating and sensual!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Devlynn
  • 2016-06-24

Excellent

Excellent stories and narrators. Tom Hiddleston can read to me anytime and Lucy Fleming was also superb.

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  • Julie
  • 2016-06-15

Tom Hiddleston as James Bond? Yes Please!

I'd listen to Tom read a phone book so the fact that he read these stories involving James Bond made it all the better. As Tom says in his interview - these stories are not like the movies. This is a very different (yet not so different) kind of Bond. Tom makes the stories come to life and makes you truly appreciate what a wonderful actor he is.

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  • Mike Bickle
  • 2022-04-08

Huddleston Adds to the Treat

Most of my experience with James Bond is from more recent films and Sean Connery. These stories were drastically more personal and depicts Bond very differently than Twitter or the films do. This collection narrated by Tom gave me more respect for him as a performer as well.