“Most people don’t think of Ian Fleming’s James Bond
novels as great literature, but that’s exactly how Kenneth Branagh, one of our
finest actors, narrates this one. His performance is notable for exploring the
subtleties of the villain Scaramanga and focusing on Bond’s interior life—both
of which may surprise those who know 007 only through the films. The setting,
more important here than in most novels, comes across as sensuous and menacing.
There are moments when Branagh’s voice goes very quiet…the effect is
mesmerizing…A marvelous reading.”