A Perfect Spy
John le Carre's classic novels deftly navigate readers through the intricate shadow worlds of international espionage with unsurpassed skill and knowledge, and have earned him unprecedented worldwide acclaim.
Magnus Pym, Britain's premier spy, has vanishedsending intelligence communities on a frenzied international manhunt. As the search plays out, so does a chain of clande...more
Popular Answered Questions
Did Miss Dubber know that they were waiting outside for him, at the end?
And what on earth was the letter from Aunt Al, who was "Ali the dhobi who stole her lace," and why was any of this included there in that final scene? (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>
That's not to say that it's a better spy novel than Tinker Tailor or The Spy Who Came in From the Cold; it's not. If spycraft is what you crave, it's here, but it definitely takes a back seat to everything else. In A Perfect Spy, Le Carre's writing rises easily to the level of the 20th Century's greatest authors.
After the death of his father, Magnus Pym, debo ...more
― John le Carré, A Perfect Spy
Remembrances of loyalties past. In some of le Carré's novels you feel haunted by the ghosts of Conrad, Greene, Nabokov, etc. In 'The Perfect Spy', I went back and forth about whether le Carré was building this novel to be Dickensian spy novel or a Proustian spy novel.
I still haven't quite figured it out. All I know is that it worked. It was bri ...more
John Le Carre has written a book which condenses the full weight of modernity’s existential crisis into what a ...more
Magnus Pym, intelligence agent for the British, has gone to London after the news of his father Rick's death. He is supposed to return to Vienna, where he and his wife Mary are currently stationed, but instead he sends his luggage on ho ...more
A PERFECT SPY is by far the best le Carré Novel, possibly the best spy thriller ever written. This masterpiece tells the story of Magnus Pym the boy along with Magnus Pym the grown man, both entangled in a world of deceit and shadows.
While the boy grows up with a con-artist father, Pym has a dark secret that is yet to be revealed. All that is apparent is that he has disappeared from the face of the planet.. or has he ? ...more
The story revolves around the life and times of Britis ...more
One of le Carré's non-Smiley novels, A Perfect Spy is far more about the psychological pressures which create a secret agent than about the mechanics of spying itself. It is part of le Carré's move away from writing genre thrillers that really began with Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.
Magnus Pym is quite a senior operational officer, who has been running networks of British spies in Czechoslovakia for many years. After the death of his father Ric ...more
The Sunday Times reviewer calls this 'a perfect work of fiction' and le Carre's masterpiece. I can't disagree. This is a fantastic read - a real page turner, intelligently written and often very funny. I'm a fan of JleC's anyway but I'm now in awe of his artistry and expertise in reeling in and hooking his readers. It's not often these days that I struggle to put a book down. My only regret is that I've finished it and will find it a hard act to follow for the depth of the main characters, for i ...more
A Perfect Spy follows the life of British master intelligence agent Magnus Richard Pym. As the book begins, Magnus has made himself disappear. Both his colleagues and his advers ...more
The book's metaphors (shared with his other works) are also just right. The spy as "close observer" is the reader--as the very same. The spy as double-agent, as betrayer, is the inverter of love, the man in the mirr ...more
When you have read about the book, and s ...more
So goes the life of Magnus Pym, a British spy who has suddenly gone missing. He has vanished to his childhood home, where he's rented a room and holed up in order to confess to his son his life as a double agent. From his beginnings as the son of a con man and a whole range of women who stood in as his mother, to his days trying on different names and faces and pasts at the sc ...more
Although a great book, it can be hard reading at times especially at the beginning when the time frame and view point can change from paragraph to paragraph.
The lead character, the apparent "perfect spy" for the purposes of this novel, is Magnus Pym - born before WW2 as the son of grifter / con-artist. The childhood and adolescence of Magnus is explored in great detail, recollected in memories written down by himself once he's gone into hiding late in his life. The various exploits and sche ...more
This book is almost exactly what everyone says it is, one of the best novels to be written about duplicity and betrayal dressed up like a somewhat typical spy story. Like much work by le Carre, there are Soviets and Czechs and double and triple agents and jilted lovers and the usual panoply of genre characters, but weaving through the whole is a bildungsroman with a remarkable synchronicity to le Carre's (David Cornwell's) own life.
The main character is Magnus Pym, son of a notorious con artist ...more
Magnus Pym is always wanting to believe in something and is often wrong. He betrays the people and things most able to help him to the people who are just using him. The pro ...more
See also: John le Carré - Wikipedia