Amongst my favourite blogs is an American site dedicated to book cover design. It's dead simple: A cover is posted and comments invited. Recently, a set of covers for a reprint of the classic Bond novels was posted. The designer gave them the pulp fiction* treatment. I commented, but was less than complimentary. In retrospect, I may have been a little harsh but I still think my comments valid. During design development the designer, he explained in an interview, researched earlier editions and you can see that in the end result. Here are some early editions that I have.
* That's pulp with a lower-case "p", i.e. the fiction, not the film.
Pan Books of this era had a clear and strong identity; heavily reliant on well executed, dynamic, full colour illustrations. Personally, I favour Penguin but still think these Pan paperbacks are brilliant. For some reason none are credited.
I've grouped these by editions. You can see how the precise cover design evolved. Don't you think Bond's gun is too small on the Dr No cover? Not surprised to see it bigger on Goldfinger.