0047 | Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy ~ John Le Carre

REVIEW
Not read an overt spy novel before. Never read any Carre either. Not sure I’ll read either anytime soon…

Okay, so there is a plot here. It was kind of long and drawn out for me. Not only that but I feel really uncomfortable with books where writers seem to leave me for dead and go off at a tangent. I’d be reading along, following the dialogue when, all of a sudden, they’d start talking about something and I hadn’t a clue what it was.

I guess that’s the price you pay for not being involved in the foreign office yourself. But it made the novel quite opaque for me. I couldn’t follow the development of the plot very well, all sorts of subtleties were lost on me, I’m sure, and there must have been at least a quarter of the novel I simply couldn’t follow.

The other 75% was okay but not really edge of your seat stuff and I’d guessed who the double-crosser had to be long before the end. Not sure why Le Carre is so highly rated, but I will give him another go at some time in the future.

OPENING LINE
The truth is, if old Major Dover hadn’t dropped dead at Thurston races Jim would never have come to Thursgood’s at all.

WORDS
hibitane | chatelaine | krug | avuncular | fey

CULTURE
PEOPLE » Percy Westerman | Jeffrey Farnol | Mephistopheles | Paul Robeson
ART » Callot | van Mieris
MISC » Neville Chamberlain’s umbrella | Alvis

CLOSING LINE
The gun, Bill Roach had finally convinced himself, was, after all, a dream.

RATING:
terrible > poor > mediocre > okay > good > very good> excellent > superb

  • Ioannus de Verani February 27, 2008, 4:01 pm

    Are you kidding? Tinker Tailor was the best book I had ever read except for Great Expectations; yes, the mole was pretty easy to figure out, but it was truly an excellent book. It wasn’t exciting in the way that Fleming’s books are, but it also wasn’t really dumb like Fleming’s books are. I would definitely give Le Carre another shot if I were you…

    Reply

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