| 'Containing passages which for sheer excitement have not been surpassed by any modern writer of this kind' Times Literary Supplement|
Date Published: 1954
Original Summary of the Plot
'In the higher ranges of Secret Service work the actual facts in many cases were in every respect equal to the most fantastic inventions of romance and melodrama. Tangle within tangle, plot and counter-plot, ruse and treachery, cross and double-cross, true agent, false agent, double agent, gold and steel, the bomb, the dagger and the firing party, were interwoven in many a texture so intricate as to be incredible and yet true. The Chief and the High Officers of the Secret Service revelled in these subterranean labyrinths, and pursued their task with cold and silent passion.' SIR WINSTON CHURCHILL in Thoughts and Adventures.
It is in these higher ranges of Secret Service work that James Bond operates on the very outside edge of danger, and, in this story, among hazards no reader will easily forget.
Ian Fleming's first book Casino Royale, an account of the gambling assignment that nearly cost Bond his life, was described as 'the best thriller since the war'.
Live and Let Die, a breath-taking hunt for secret treasure that takes Bond to Harlem, Florida and Jamaica is still better.
Plot Summary from the original jacket copy of the Jonathan Cape edition
Current Summary of the Plot
Beautiful, fortune-telling Solitaire is the prisoner (and tool) of Mr Big - master of fear, artist in crime and Voodoo Baron of Death. James Bond has no time for superstition - he knows that Big is also a top SMERSH operative and a real threat. More than that, after tracking him through the jazz joints of Harlem, to the Everglades and on to the Caribbean, 007 has realised that he is one of the most dangerous men that he has ever faced. And no one, not even the enigmatic Solitaire, can be sure how their battle of wills is going to end.
Plot Summary adapted from the current Penguin edition
The Girl: Solitaire
The Villain: Mr Big
Location: USA and Caribbean
Title used for film: 1973
James Bond played by Roger Moore