London: Jonathan Cape and Hodder & Stoughton, l98l. 1981.
First Edition. Hardcover. First Edition of Gardner's First "Bond" book, faithfully following in Ian Fleming's footsteps. Gardner, who had resigned from the priesthood, became a journalist, theatre critic and arts editor in Straford-upon-Avon until 1964. Writing two Sherlock Holmes novels, The Return of Moriarity & The Revenge of Moriarity, Gardner entered the Le Carre genre, with his Herbie Kruger trilogy. In 1979, Gardner, living in Ireland, received a letter from well-known crime reviewer and author HRF Keating, asking him if he would be interested in picking up where Ian Fleming had left off and continuing with the James Bond series. Supplying Glidrose with four narrative outlines, one was chosen. Gardner ultimately published 16 James Bond novels, his last, Cold Fall, in 1996. "I work rather like an actor, taking on a theme or role so that it eventually envelopes me. After that, I need to work with a good editor, who I use, as an actor uses, a director. Work is life and life is work. I am a sto ry-teller, a professional wordsmith - it is a job, like that of a carpenter or any other craftsman. Sometimes the piece works, sometimes not." Adapted into film as Licence To Kill with Timothy Dalton. 8vo.,270 pp. Fine in original black cloth covered boards with gold lettering on the spine in a near fine dustwrapper, designed by Mon Mohan, from an original watercolour by Richard Chopping, who designed many of the dustwrappers of Fleming's 007 novels. Showing two miniscule closed tears at the crown of the spine and an 1/8th of an inch inverted v-cut on the bottom, inside front flap undisturbing the original printed price. Very minor vertical crease at the spine panel. A very bright copy.
Item #32049 Price: US$59.50