Welcome to MI6 Headquarters

This is the world's most visited unofficial James Bond 007 website with daily updates, news & analysis of all things 007 and an extensive encyclopaedia. Tap into Ian Fleming's spy from Sean Connery to Daniel Craig with our expert online coverage and a rich, colour print magazine dedicated to spies.

Learn More About MI6 & James Bond →

The 40 books that inspired Bond author Sebastian Faulks

30-Apr-2008 • Literary

They range from the delights of Dr Dolittle to the darkness of A Clockwork Orange, the books that should be on everyone's shelves - reports The Telegraph.

Faulks has been named by the bookseller Waterstone's as the first curator of its The Writer's Table and he had free rein in choosing each of the 40 titles to be showcased.

His selection shows that his favourite writers include Charles Dickens, Iris Murdoch, Philip Larkin and the James Bond writer, Ian Fleming.

Toby Bourne, the head of fiction at Waterstone's, said: "The selection offers an incredible insight into the influences that have helped make Faulks one of the best-selling and critically-acclaimed writers working today.

"The list is full of surprises and delights; the books he has chosen range from children's favourites to modern bestsellers, poetry to true tales of derring-do, and anyone who has read and loved one of Faulks's books cannot help but find something new to read here."

Faulks's novel Engleby is currently a Waterstone's best-seller and his own Bond novel, Devil May Care, launches on May 28, marking the centenary of Fleming's birth.

Faulks described The First Day On The Somme by the little-known writer Martin Middlebrook as a book that had an enormous effect on him.

"A reconstruction of the events of July 1, 1916, perhaps the blackest day in British history, by a poultry farmer-turned-historian. Calm, detailed and horrifying, it was written at a time (1970) when no one seemed to care."

The table, which was launched in selected Waterstone's stores on Wednesday and at Waterstones.com , will run throughout the month, with Faulks's hand-written thoughts on each chosen title.

The reading list: Faulk's recommendations

1. Jake's Thing by Kingsley Amis

2. Success by Martin Amis

3. Tim All Alone by Edward Ardizzone

4. The Garden Of The Finzi-Continis by Giorgio Bassani

5. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

6. David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

7. The Waste Land by TS Eliot

8. The Blue Flower by Penelope Fitzgerald

9. Moonraker by Ian Fleming

10. The Magus by John Fowles

11. Quartered Safe Out Here by George MacDonald Fraser

12. Towards The End Of The Morning by Michael Frayn

13. Loving. Living. Party Going by Henry Green

14. The Last Enemy by Richard Hillary

15. The Line Of Beauty by Alan Hollinghurst

16. The Price Of Glory by Alistair Horne

17. An Evil Cradling by Brian Keenan

18. The Lake by Yasunari Kawabata

19. The Unbearable Lightness Of Being by Milan Kundera

20. The Whitsun Weddings by Philip Larkin

21. The Rainbow by DH Lawrence

22. The Adventures Of Dr Dolittle by Hugh Lofting

23. The Scent Of Dried Roses by Tim Lott

24. The Magic Mountain by Thomas Mann

25. The House Of Elrig by Gavin Maxwell

26. The First Day On The Somme by Martin Middlebrook

27. Birds Of America by Lorrie Moore

28. The Black Prince by Iris Murdoch

29. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

30. The World Is Not Enough by Zoe Oldenbourg

31. Sabbath's Theater by Philip Roth

32. The Catcher In The Rye by JD Salinger

33. One Day In The Life Of Ivan Denisovich by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

34. The Red And The Black by Stendhal

35. A Cruel Madness by Colin Thubron

36. War And Peace by Leo Tolstoy

37. A Patchwork Planet by Anne Tyler

38. A Fringe Of Leaves by Patrick White

39. Lyrical Ballads by William Wordsworth & Samuel Taylor Coleridge

40. Germinal by Emile Zola

Discuss this news here...

Open in a new window/tab