It is the third summer of perestroika. Niki Landau, philanderer and travelling rep, attends the first Moscow audio fair and is asked by beautiful young Katya to take a parcel back to England.
It’s addressed to Barley Blair, jazz-player and drinker, and contains information vital to the defence of the West. But times and heroes are changing. And Barley Blair is a man who makes his own rules of engagement.
John Le Carre writes quite amazing stories - about flawed innocents with pure intentions caught up in the mendacities of the real word. There is something about Michael Jayston's voice, the slightly jaded world-weariness, that makes it quite the perfect vehicle for Le Carre's writing.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful
The ending is different to the film adaptation, which I believe is better because your mind makes its own predictions of the outcome, which I'm finding aren't quite as nice.
In the best tradition and under the cover of hide-and-seek, it's a hunting love story, resembling a Russian folktale, which offers a rare and enthralling spectacle: the resurrection of buried hopes. The novel is reserved, but still full of potent surprises, 24 years after its publication. This could hardly be said about the global political system, which inspired its conception. We were full of hopes then. Many of us disenchanted of what has transpired since. The work is a great example of fine literature may outlive reality that has gone to the dogs.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful
What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
Weak plot and too much padding makes this no more than two stars.
Would you listen to another book narrated by Michael Jayston?
The narrator uses a whisper, particularly with female voices, so it can be difficult to follow without the text or by adjusting the volume.
If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Russia House?
Most chapters could have sections removed without affecting the weak plot.
Any additional comments?
This is really a short storey expanded into a too long novel.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful
I enjoyed listening to this book the narrator was very pleasant to listen too the story was well written I would recommend it
I am a Le Carre' fan but this one is such a waste of time. I think the author must have been in a different place. There is no direction and because the text books are bogus, no relevance
0 of 1 people found this review helpful