Jonathan Cape, 1956. Octavo. Original black boards (Gilbert's type A, no priority), spine lettered in silver, silver diamond motif on front cover. With supplied dust jacket. Housed in a custom black quarter morocco folding box. Slight rubbing to spine lettering, contents clean. A near-fine copy in very good dust jacket, not price-clipped, light sunning to spine panel, edges slightly rubbed and nicked, closed tear to head of upper spine panel fold, bright overall. First edition, first impression, presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, "To Tony this finishing course! from Ian". The recipient is Sir Anthony George Berry (1925-1984), the sixth and youngest son of the newspaper magnate James Gomer Berry, 1st Viscount Kemsley, who employed Fleming and was an important figure in Fleming's life. The inscription presumably refers to an early achievement in the young Berry's career; he entered politics in 1964, becoming a prominent Conservative MP, and deputy chief whip in Margaret Thatcher's first government. He died in the bomb attack by the Provisional IRA at the Grand Hotel, Brighton, during the Conservative Party's annual conference on 12 October 1984. His father, Lord Kemsley, owner of the Sunday Times amongst others, offered Fleming a job as foreign news manager of Kemsley Newspapers after the war, and enabled him to write the Bond novels by allowing an unusual clause in Fleming's contract: Fleming would take January and February as his annual paid leave, during which time he worked on his novels at Goldeneye, on Jamaica's north shore. Fleming sometimes "ordered a correspondent to change his name if he did not like it. His view was that, generally speaking, all foreign correspondents should have British-sounding names. Mario Modiano in Athens became Michael Manning, Mozandi in Tehran became Mostyn, while Geoffrey Bocca in New York one day received a terse cable from Fleming saying: allez bocca ave barker. Once however, Fleming had this trick played back at him. When Anthony Berry, Lord Kemsley's youngest son, was editing the Sunday Chronicle, a story came in from the Gibraltar correspondent on a security issue and a request that his byline should not be used. This occurred shortly after Fleming had his first novel published. 'We must have some byline,' said Anthony Berry. 'Why not James Bond, Gibraltar?' This byline was duly used" (McCormick, p. 129). Diamonds are Forever, the fourth Bond novel, was adapted into a film starring Sean Connery in 1971. This copy is from the significant Ian Fleming collection of Martin Schøyen (b.1940), with his bookplate. Schøyen's private collection of manuscripts, which span all cultures and all time periods, is one of the largest and most comprehensive of its kind. Item #155891
Gilbert A4a(1.1); The Schøyen Collection No. 28. Donald McCormick, 17F: The Life of Ian Fleming, 1993.