Fifty is such a nice, round number, and it is the peg on which two new books are hung. "The Rolling Stones 50" (Hyperion Books, $60) celebrates the 50th year of the world's oldest rock band with a hernia-inducing tome filled with more than 1,000 photographs from the stage, studio and behind the scenes. Stitching the images together are bits of commentary from band members, including this observation from Keith Richards about a fire at his Redlands mansion in 1973: "I've had two or three houses burn down."
"50 Years of James Bond" (Life Books, $27.95) is something of a misnomer because while the Bond movies have been around for a half century, Ian Fleming's books date back 59 years. Rightly so, the book devotes the opening chapters to Fleming, his books and the intricacies of the British military intelligence agencies, which inspired many of Bond's storylines. The rest of the book focuses on the movies and the actors who played the tuxedo-clad hero.