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You Only Live Twice (with Interview)

Narrated by: Martin Jarvis
Series: James Bond: The Collection, Book 12
Length: 7 hrs and 33 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (252 ratings)

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Summary

James Bond seems unable to function after the death of his wife. Determined to restore 007 to the effective agent he used to be, M sends him on a mission to Japan, to the mysterious ‘Castle of Death’ and into the lair of an old and terrifying enemy. For Bond and Blofeld, this will be their final encounter. Only one of them can survive.

Includes an exclusive bonus interview with Martin Jarvis.

Ian Fleming was born in London in 1908. He was educated at Eton and worked as a journalist in Moscow and a banker and stockbroker in London before becoming personal assistant to the Director of Naval Intelligence during the Second World War. He wrote his first Bond novel, Casino Royale, in 1952 at Goldeneye, his home in Jamaica. Since then James Bond has gone on to become a global phenomenon.

Martin Jarvis OBE has recorded more than 150 Just William stories for the BBC. These have become international audio bestsellers. He won the Theatre World Award for his starring role on Broadway in By Jeeves; his West End appearances include works by Ayckbourn, Frayn, Pinter and Wilde. Screen successes include everything from Stargate Atlantis, Dr Who and Numb3rs to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and the Oscar®-winning Titanic.

©1964 Ian Fleming Publications Ltd (P)2013 Ian Fleming Publications Ltd. © AudioGO Ltd, 2012. James Bond and 007 are registered trademarks of Danjaq LLC, used under licence by Ian Fleming Publications Ltd.

Critic reviews

"Must rank among the best of the Bond tales." ( Bookman)
"As damnably readable as ever." ( Daily Herald)
"Rich, wonderful stuff, Fleming at his flaming best." ( New York Times)
"Fleming doesn’t waste a word… his sense of surprise is perfect" (BBC)
"Escapism in the grand manner." ( Boston Globe)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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

You only live twice.

The only Bond book that I have not enjoyed up to now. It has a slow pace compared to all the others and this may have somethingvto do with it following on from the death of Bonds wife. Theres plenty going on but the action all comes very late on. Once again, nothing at all like the film. A must from the point of view of working through the series but not the
best by a long chalk.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Last book

This book was very well read by Martin, I felt it took a very long time ,up 12 chapters before the story really began follow just like the old James Bond books.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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A series of missed opportunities

A disapointing end to Blofeld trilogy. This had so much going for it 1) Bond is a broken man out for revenge for Tracy, 2) a new setting in Japan that we haven't seen before, 3) Blofeld has gone full cartoon supper villain and is living on a privet island at the centre of a 'garden of death', 4) Erma Bunt is back and 5) Tiger is a fantastic new allies for Bond to have adventures with. But non of this goes anywhere and instead we spend the bulk of the book living with a group of scantily clad fisherwomen (not that I mind the scantily clad part mind you) And it's not that the story is bad, it's still better then Diamonds are Forever but as the conclusion to the greatest rivalry of Bond's life, the one that has taken so much from him that has see the most character development since Casino Royal it's a bit of a let down is all.

Also this should really have been read by a woman (preferably a Japanese woman) Martin Jarvis dose his best and If it weren't such a big part of the story it wouldn't matter but it is and it dose.

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thoroughly engaging thriller

as always Ian Fleming delivers with a marvellous and slightly macabre tale ..it's almost depressin g to see what Hollywood did to these finely taut thrillers

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The least enjoyable book

The least enjoyable book I’ve read in the series so far. As someone said tigers and kissys voice became quite annoying. The book may have been more enjoyable just to read.

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serious mispronunciation!

it is always maddening especially when the word is everywhere in the book when that word is mispronounced. Martin Jarvis should have taken a little care to know how to pronounce the word geisha!! it is pronounced "gay-sha" not "guy-sha". Completely spoils the effect of the book.

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Excellent story and superb narration

This is a classic Bond and far better than the film. This is a faithful unabridged version with a superb narrator. You really get a feel for the ‘true’ Bond in this ‘book’- one of Flemings best!

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Fleming at the height of his power as an author

This is a brilliantly realised story of Bond, vulnerable and yet vengeful, and ultimately adding the poignancy of new love discovered and then, as the reader, must ultimately conclude, to be lost in the recovery of memory. I loved this book!

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Not your average, exciting, Bond novel.

Very slow and steady. Hard to stick with listening it through. Can now understand why the film only uses a few characters and location.

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Great listen, well presented and very different from the film

I've been working my way through the James Bond audiobooks over the last few months and I was not expecting this story to have anything original to grab my attention. I was pleasantly surprised to find it contained a great many new ideas, was as beautiful as the earlier books and seemed rather less racist to boot. It's still not politically correct but it is certainly less unkind than the previous books.

I enjoyed listening. The action takes a little time to bring but the build up is interesting and Bond's exploration of and immersion in Japanese culture is quite deep and thoughtful. There's nothing worth skipping over and I highly recommend this book.

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  • Da'lo
  • 15-07-19

impeccable story of another 007 adventure

First the reading: you can perceive the different characters as being told and imagine their appearance in your own visual mind as the reader portrays the different vocal expressions of the characters in the story.
second the story: amazing and incredible. taking my mind across a world never imagined and yet giving my visual references to relate to the scenery.
leading the reader to the last word. which I can only imagine if one was reading the physical book would want to turn the last page for more.
thank you to the reader and audible and Ian Fleming for this book. thank you