Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy - John le Carré

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
ISBN: 1444728172
Pages: 432
Genre: Thriller, espionage
Bestsellers: The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy , Smiley's People, The Constant Gardener

George Smiley has been called off from his forced retirement, to hunt down a mole well settled in the high ranks of the British intelligence. He must take upon the trail left behind by his former and now dead boss Control and doubt everyone around him, including himself. A chilling tale of the post cold war European politics and cat and mouse race between Karla and Smiley and the twisted British circus (MI6).

Nightflier Speaks:
I was pretty darn excited about the movie of the same name which released 2 weeks back. And promptly picked up the book from my brother's book shelf before the movie watching experience. I still curse myself for picking up a classic so late. But I have started with John Le Carre nonetheless. It doesn't feel that bad now.

The first thing that hits you about the book is how deeply the characters are developed. And how non glamorous they are! Seriously from Ian Fleming Bond to Carre's Smiley, you can clearly see the two ends of the spy spectrum. Smiley is extremely subdued, constantly cheated upon by his beautiful wife, is not an action figure, is middle aged with sagging cheeks, is not unusually charming. So very unlike his other British contemporary. And same goes for all the other characters and plot. There are no bombs exploding or random gunfires taking place. This is 'serious' spy fiction and these are some very boring intelligence officers without the frills of fanfare and fame. They work underground most of the times and hardly get any credit for saving the government's behind. Still they go on. Because it's a way of life. For them.

And with such meticulous details, John Le Carre' builds up a classic thriller tale. Of espionage and deceit. Despite all the spy-ness of the officers, these are real people with real secrets. And Carre portrays them so well, that you are hooked. 
Agreed that the British English sometimes gets to your head and the internal spy lingo (code words) makes you google stuff more than you would like to. It is a worth read, despite all the challenges.

The book is like a well laid out chess game with a set of seasoned players, with the reader going over it in his head and watching every move, still not getting what might be happening. And there is a strange delight in that!

[Since it is a thriller I have not given away any plot details, except for in the synopsis.]

Rating: 4.5/5
Price: 299 (Flipkart)

1 comment:

  1. One of the best espionage books ever. Le Carre is a class of his own.

    Even I have picked him up a lot late than i wanted


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