Live and Let Die (novel)

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Live and Let Die
Original title Live and Let Die
German title Live and Let Die
author Ian Fleming
translation to German Günter Eichel (1961), Stephanie Pannen and Anika Klüver (2012)
Previous novel Casino Royale
Subsequent novel Moonraker

Live and Let Die is the second James Bond - Novel of the British Ian Fleming and published 1954th


007 James Bond is put on Mr. Big , the most powerful New York gangster and agent of the unscrupulous secret organization SMERSH .

Thousands of gold coins from an ancient pirate treasure are appearing in the United States. MI 6 suspects that Mr. Big is using this treasure to finance Soviet espionage in America. James Bond is now supposed to stop Mr. Big and find the source of the gold coins.

He flies to New York , where he meets his old friend Felix Leiter , who works with him as a representative of the CIA . Bond and Leiter want to make their way to Saint Petersburg to investigate Mr. Big's motor yacht Secatur , which makes regular trips to Jamaica and back and is suspected of being used to smuggle the gold coins across the sea. Before doing this, they take a look around Harlem to get a rough idea of ​​Mr. Big's backyard. They wander through several bars where they hope that Mr. Big will stay. Her camouflage is blown in a bar and Mr. Big takes her prisoner, where Bond meets him and his beautiful assistant Solitaire, on which Bond leaves a good saving impression. After Bond is tortured, he and Leiter escape.

Now Bond and Leiter have to get to St. Petersburg as quickly as possible, as they are wanted in New York by Mr. Big and his henchmen. But before they leave, Solitaire contacts Bond, who asks him to rescue them from Mr. Big's clutches. Bond agrees and takes her to St. Petersburg by train. They narrowly escape an attack by Mr. Big's people.

In St. Petersburg, Bond and Leiter go in search of the Secatur. In the harbor, the two meet The Robber , who is very rude and guards a warehouse from unauthorized intruders, which reinforces their suspicion that the gold coins are in this warehouse. They return to their hotel room, where they discover that Solitaire has been kidnapped. At a loss, Bond falls asleep in the room and Leiter sets off alone to the warehouse, where he is caught by Robber and put in front of the sharks to eat. Ladder survived, but lost his left arm and one leg. Now Bond has to go on alone and he decides to examine the warehouse like Leiter the night before. In the warehouse he finds out that the gold coins are hidden in containers with poisonous fish. But Bond is surprised by Robber and a skirmish breaks out in which Robber loses out and suffers a fate similar to that of Leiter, except that he atone for it.

Bond flies to Jamaica to find the source of the gold coins, which appears to be on an island on the coast. In the evening, Bond makes a dangerous diving maneuver through the reefs to the island, where he attaches a sticky mine to the Secatur and finally finds the source, but is captured by Mr. Big.

Now Mr Big seems to have triumphed, because Bond and Solitaire are in his power. He threatens to kill her by trying to pull her behind his yacht with a rope. But the Secatur explodes in time through the mine, before Mr. Big Bond and Solitaire can pull through the reefs in the water, where they would have been bloody bait for the sharks. The tide turns and Mr. Big is eventually killed by the creatures who were supposed to serve him first.


The novel was banned in Ireland. However, this benefited the publicity.

In Germany the novel was published in 1961 by Ullstein Verlag . The translation comes from Günther Eichel. In September 2012, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary, Life and Let Die was published in a new translation by Stephanie Pannen and Anika Klüver at Cross Cult Verlag. For the first time, the novel is available in Germany in an unabridged translation and with the original chapter sections and headings. In addition, all of Fleming's other Bond novels were re-published.


The novel was filmed in 1973 as Live and let the with Roger Moore as James Bond. This was Roger Moore's first James Bond film. The plot was adapted, changed and modernized to the seventies. The film lacks any reference to the Soviet Union, instead Mr. Big becomes the code name of Kananga , the ruler of the fictional Caribbean state of San Monique . It was also heroin to the object of trade by Mr. Big and Kananga.

Some elements were incorporated into later Bond films: In the film In Deadly Mission (1981) Bond and his partner are tied to a rope and pulled through reefs, but are able to escape planned death. The mutilation of Felix Leiters by a shark and the death of the villain responsible for it by the same occurs in License to Kill (1989).


Individual evidence

  1. Andrew Lycett's Ian Fleming Biography