In the last of our series of articles about Jamaica we take a look at what happened to 007 when sent after Francisco “Pistols” Scaramanga. For more about James Bond’s experiences on the island also see Live And Let Die: The Jamaica Version and Doctor No: a ‘holiday’ in Jamaica.
James Bond’s return to Jamaica in The Man With The Golden Gun is just a few short years after its independence from Britain in 1962. Bond is sent on a mission that is considered to be suicidal as penitence for his attempted assassination attempt on M after being brainwashed by the Russians.
His brief is to terminate the career of a freelance assassin sometimes employed by the KGB – “Pistols” Scaramanga, known as “The Man With The Golden Gun”. After a fruitless search across the Caribbean, 007 is waiting for a flight to Cuba at Kingston International Airport when he picks up a lead that Scaramanga will be at Savannah La Mar.
Cancelling his flight, Bond stays at Morgan’s Harbour Hotel – the “romantic little hotel is on the site of Port Royal”, according to Fleming. In the hotel restaurant Bond meets Mary Goodnight for dinner; to his delight his former secretary has been posted to Kingston and while catching up they eat broiled lobster with melted butter and foie gras, accompanied by Champagne. Dating from 1955, Morgan’s Harbour Hotel remains in operation today and has recently been refurbished – head for the hotel’s Quartermaine Restaurant to dine 007-style.
Bond and Goodnight drive through the picturesquely named Spanish Town, May Pen, Alligator Pond and Black River headed for “Sav’ La Mar”. Bond’s destination is 3½ Love Lane, which turns out to be a for-sale brothel.
Scaramanga hires Bond to handle security at a shareholders’ meeting of the fictional Thunderbird Hotel, the construction of which is running late and over budget. The hotel is being build at Bloody Bay near Negril Beach and since the shareholders include members of the Mafia and KGB, Scaramanga must watch his back… and Bond must watch his own.
Unfortunately The Man With The Golden Gun proved to be Ian Fleming’s last James Bond novel and was published posthumously in 1965. Octopussy & The Living Daylights was published the following year, consisting of a collection of previously published short stories.
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