The Spy Who Came in from the Cold

Front Cover
Penguin Books Limited, Feb 24, 2011 - Fiction - 304 pages
86 Reviews

Alex Leamas is tired. It's the 1960s, he's been out in the cold for years, spying in Berlin for his British masters, and has seen too many good agents murdered for their troubles. Now Control wants to bring him in at last - but only after one final assignment.

He must travel deep into the heart of Communist Germany and betray his country, a job that he will do with his usual cynical professionalism. But when George Smiley tries to help a young woman Leamas has befriended, Leamas's mission may prove to be the worst thing he could ever have done.

In le Carré's breakthrough work of 1963, the spy story is reborn as a gritty and terrible tale of men who are caught up in politics beyond their imagining.

With a new introduction by William Boyd and an afterword by Le Carré himself.

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
30
4 stars
37
3 stars
15
2 stars
3
1 star
1

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jsburbidge - LibraryThing

A beautifully structured book, with its Ouroboros shape (end returning to its beginning). Le Carré supports it throughout with good prose and effective characterisation. Its very finely balanced plot ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jwrudn - LibraryThing

A story of betrayal. Are British and GDR intelligence are two sides of the same coin? Is the sacrifice of one to save many acceptable? Does it really save many or is it just a deadly game that is ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

About the author (2011)

John le Carré (Author)
John le Carré was born in 1931 and attended the universities of Bern and Oxford. He taught at Eton and served briefly in British Intelligence during the Cold War. For more than fifty years he has lived by his pen. He divides his time between London and Cornwall.

William Boyd (Introducer)
William Boyd was born in 1952 in Accra, Ghana, and grew up there and in Nigeria. He is the author of fifteen highly acclaimed, bestselling novels and five collections of stories. He is married and divides his time between London and south-west France.

Bibliographic information