Some may wonder why I picked this as an overlooked book. It was, after all, made into what I consider Roger Moore's best James Bond film. The book was not what I expected when I first read it in the mid-1990s—a first-person narrative from the viewpoint of a woman rescued by James Bond from two mobsters who attempt to rape her. According to Wikipedia, it is the "shortest and most sexually explicit of Fleming's novels," but even on a first read, I appreciated Fleming crossing gender lines, working his creative muscles.
Evidently, critics and fans in 1962 didn't share my appreciation, which led Fleming to be unhappy with the book. He sold the movie rights to the title only and blocked publication of a paperback edition in Britain.
The centennial of Fleming's birth has prompted many less-than-flattering reflections on his life and career. Though not what I expected, I stuck with The Spy Who Loved Me and am glad I did.