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Publisher's Summary

Simon Russell Beale stars in this BBC Radio full-cast dramatisation of John le Carré’s last Smiley novel.

George Smiley is one of the most brilliantly realised characters in British fiction. Bespectacled, tubby, eternally middle-aged, and deceptively ordinary, he has a mind like a steel trap and is said to possess ‘the cunning of Satan and the conscience of a virgin’.

The Berlin Wall is down, the Cold War is over, but the world’s second oldest profession is very much alive. Smiley accepts an invitation to dine with the eager young men and women of the Circus’ latest intake, and over coffee and brandy, by flickering firelight, he beguilingly offers them his personal thoughts on espionage past, present, and future. In doing so, he prompts one of his former Circus colleagues into a searching examination of his own eventful secret life.

Starring the award-winning Simon Russell Beale as Smiley, and with a distinguished cast including Patrick Malahide as Ned, this engrossing dramatisation brings le Carré’s masterful novel vividly to life.

©1990 David Cornwell (P)2010 BBC

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Spies, spies, spies. Looking for a good time

Always a good combination: Le Carre and a BBC dramatisation.

Worth a listen. A lot going on, though not the most cohesive Le Carre plot.

  • Overall
  • lynn
  • ADELAIDE, Australia
  • 05-06-11

Excellent production of episodic book

This is another very good dramatisation of the last book in which George Smiley appears, As a text the book is somewhat episodic but this production brings it all together particularly with Patrick Malahide as Ned. This work is as good in it's own way as the author's reading of his own work. A great read and a great listen.

  • Overall

Poor substitute for a good reading

I got this book along with Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and was extremely disappointed. I have the same books released by Listen for Pleasure Ltd. on cassette that are far superior. These dramatizations are incomplete and don't tell the LeCarre stories well at all. I deleted after listening--along with Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. For me that is the lowest of the low. Go find a good reading of LeCarre books and don't waste your time with this.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful