Fleming’s career as a novelist began after World War II, and his creation of James Bond was based in part on his real-life exploits as a special operative. Fleming was a lieutenant commander and later commander in British Naval Intelligence, as was his literary alter ego Commander James Bond. Fleming carried a Beretta during the war and one of his later book titles was the actual name of a special operation he had conceived during the war, Operation Goldeneye.
The guns of James Bond, as neither the guns nor the movies actually coincide with Ian Fleming’s novels. First five books shared that the James Bond was using Beretta 418 later changed to Walther PPK 7.65mm. In Dr. No, when M asks 007 to hand over his gun. “Yes, just what I thought,” he says angrily, “this damned Beretta again. I’ve told you about this before.” He then hands the pistol to Q, who rolls it over in his hand and quips, “It’s nice and light—in a lady’s handbag. No stopping power.”
M looks straight at Bond and says, “You’ll carry the Walther. Show him Q.” He loads the magazine, slaps it into the gun and hands it to 007. “Walther PPK, 7.65mm with a delivery like a brick through a plate-glass window. Takes a brush silencer with very little reduction in muzzle velocity. The American CIA swears by them.” (A technical error on the part of the film’s writers and set armorer, 7.65mm is .32 ACP not .380, an oversight that most people miss in the dialogue.) Bond holds the PPK, feels its weight and balance, and slips it into his tan and blue chamois shoulder holster. And thus the legend began.