Friday, September 1, 2017

My Washington Times Review Of John Le Carre's 'A Legacy Of Spies'

The Washington Times ran my review of John le Carre’s A Legacy of Spies.

Although I don’t subscribe to John le Carre’s leftist worldview, I’ve been reading and enjoying his spy novels since I was a teenager in the 1960s.

I’m not fond of most of his post-Cold War novels, as his political and anti-American sentiments mar the stories for me, but I admire greatly his earlier novels, such as “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy,” based on the notorious British spy and traitor Kim Philby, as well as “The Spy Who Came in From the Cold.”

In his latest novel, “A Legacy of Spies,” his 24th, the 85-year-old author returns to the scene of the crimes, so to speak, from “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy,” “The Spy Who Came in From the Cold” and his other Cold War novels. His great character, the brilliant, bespectacled, physically frog-like master spy, George Smiley, appears in the novel, albeit briefly.

But Smiley is the center of conversation throughout the novel between former spy Peter Guillam and officials of the current-day British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS), also known as MI6, and formally known as the “Circus” in Mr. Smiley’s day. (The old headquarters was located at Cambridge Circus in London).

… Peter Guillam, now elderly and in retirement, is the central character in “A Legacy of Spies.” He is recalled to London by SIS headquarters to answer questions regarding the operation that resulted in the death of British intelligence officer Alec Leamas and his companion, Elizabeth Gold, who were shot and killed at the Berlin Wall in “The Spy Who Came in from the Cold.” The grown children of the two are suing the SIS and intelligence officials have discovered that nearly all of the classified records of the operation were destroyed by Smiley, or by someone under his command. Guillam, perhaps?

You can read the rest of the review via the below link:

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