From the New York Times bestselling author of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and The Night Manager, now a television series starring Tom Hiddleston. John le Carré’s latest novel, A Legacy of Spies, is now available.
In this exquisitely told novel, John le Carré shows us once again his acute understanding of the world we live in and where power really lies.
In the wake of the collapse of Lehman Brothers and with Britain on the brink of economic ruin, a young English couple takes a vacation in Antigua. There they meet Dima, a Russian who styles himself the world’s Number One money-launderer and who wants, among other things, a game of tennis. Back in London, the couple is subjected to an interrogation by the British Secret service who also need their help. Their acquiescence will lead them on a precarious journey through Paris to a safe house in Switzerland, helpless pawns in a game of nations that reveals the unholy alliances between the Russian mafia, the City of London, the government and the competing factions of the British Secret Service.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
In recession-wracked England, even the spycraft gets outsourced. John le Carré’s briskly plotted 2010 novel follows a pair of British innocents-turned-assets who get swept up in a jet-set case involving Russian money launderers, crooked bankers, and a political class that profits from the gangster economy. No one writes more thrillingly about the systems that govern us, and no one writes more empathetically about the people (spooks and civilians alike) tasked with serving those systems. While the global forces driving the novel’s action are decidedly modern, the story is vintage le Carré.
Those readers who have found post cold war le Carr too cerebral will have much to cheer about with this Russian mafia spy thriller. While on holiday in Antigua, former Oxford tutor Perry Makepiece and his lawyer girlfriend, Gail Perkins, meet Dmitri "Dima" Vladimirovich Krasnov, an avuncular Russian businessman who challenges Perry to a tennis match. Even though Perry wins, Dima takes a shine to the couple, and soon they're visiting with his extended family. At Dima's request, Perry conveys a message to MI6 in England that Dima wishes to defect, and on arriving home, Perry and Gail receive a summons from MI6 to a debriefing. Not only is Dima a Russian oligarch, he's also one of the world's biggest money launderers. Le Carr ratchets up the tension step-by-step until the sad, inevitable end. His most accessible work in years, this novel shows once again why his name is the one to which all others in the field are compared.
Customer ReviewsSee All
John Le Carre introduces us convincingly to the post 9-11 world of British espionage where terrorism, drugs and money-laundering are the threats to be countered, and the intelligence bureaucracy is the main obstacle to be overcome. It is peopled by an entertaining mix of heroes and villains and bits of both who are among the most fun to be found in all his books. Le Carre lays out the plot in a relaxed manner, but as the game plays out, the suspense grows apace. Then, suddenly, the story ends with a dull thud. That is the author's intention, unfortunately. I just felt cheated.
Our Kind Of Traitor is my kind of book. A look into the present day state of affairs in the spy trade through the thoughts of those guilty and not.
Per usual, Le Carre spins an intoxicating tale without getting drunk on his own prose. It is always a pleasure to read the words of one so comfortable with the English language. A clever writer who's not tempted to be even a bit too clever.
The story itself follows a young English couple as they innocently step into the web of a Russian mobster. Were that not dire enough, they soon find them ensnared by English intelligence service.
Sadly, the novel ends like all Le Carre novels...leaving me depressed that it will be at least another year or two before I can pick up, or download, his next jewel.
His Best In Years
I truly enjoyed this story. A couple of the previous reviews were disappointed with the ending. To me, it was classic Le Carre. Life's questions are rarely answered completely, nor is everything wrapped up in the novel. The good guys don't always win, and even when they do they don't always survive their victory. John Le Carre has no equal writing literate spy novels.