If your image of James Bond is based wholly on his screen persona, you might be shocked to discover a slightly more well-rounded character in the original books upon which the film series is based.
This is not to say that you won't find the literary Bond consumed with the usual womanizing, extortion plots, spy gadgets, and corny puns. The secret agent is still a cliché, but on paper, he actually has an interior life. Well, almost. Take, for example his appetite. If you’ve seen only one James Bond movie, you know what the secret agent likes to drink (martinis "shaken, not stirred"), but what does he like to eat?
In Ian Fleming’s Thunderball (1961), Bond reveals a penchant for pasta that may be a surprise to those who are only familiar with his celluloid self.
As the book opens, the secret agent has been ordered to spend two weeks suffering a numbing 1960s “nature cure” of strict dieting, sitz baths, and spine stretching at a retreat in Brighton called Shrublands.
Inevitably, libido and intrigue -- in the form of of Patricia Fearing, a hot osteopath, and Count Lippe, a scheming adversary -- interrupt the forced respite. As Bond plans his next move, Fleming divulges 007's desire for sex, revenge, and, well, spaghetti:
James Bond would have been more worried, as day by day the H-cure drew his teeth, if it had not been for three obsessions which belonged to his former life and which would not leave him—a passionate longing for a large dish of Spaghetti Bolognese containing plenty of chopped garlic and accompanied by a whole bottle of the cheapest, rawest Chianti (bulk for his empty stomach and sharp tastes for his starved palate), an overwhelming desire for the strong, smooth body of Patricia Fearing, and a deadly concentration on ways and means to wring the guts out of Count Lippe. [emphasis mine]
Bolognese and Chianti. Who knew? And here I thought the man existed solely on cocktails!