Evelyn's Reviews > Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy by John le Carré
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's review
Aug 07, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: fantastic-writing

For anyone who has seen the film and is now considering the book (to explain what was actually happening) there is one minor detail which will make everything seem clear: Control is dead. This fact, introduced at the beginning of le Carré's novel, was far from obvious in the film. Conclusion: books are always better. Why one character was gay in the film, and constantly thinking about his girlfriend in the book is beyond me. But that's beside the point.

This is a really excellent read from an author whose style of writing grips from the very first page. Admittedly, the plot is still a little tricky to follow from time to time - that's the only reason I haven't rated it 5 stars - but the characters and their relationships are first class. Everything is explained - (bliss, for those of us who watched the movie first)- and is even better in writing - especially the enjoyable writing of John le Carré.

As characters go, Jim is the best, and his father/son relationship with the schoolboy Bill is a really touching subplot, especially as le Carré refuses to be overly sentimental. He also works in the theme of memory and nostalgia for the past, really fitting as his protagonist is a retired agent. On the whole, I really recommend this as a good Crime written in a unique style of prose - and as a remedy for anyone feeling disorientated after their trip to the cinema.

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