Gerald's Reviews > Smiley's People

Smiley's People by John le Carré
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's review
Feb 15, 2008

it was amazing
Read in September, 2007

The espionage establishment as mundane, humorless British corporate bureaucracy. Endless, boring meetings, unreadable secret-stamped files locked in nameless reading rooms, and middle-management infighting.

Chilling because it feels so real, so closely observed.

Third in the trilogy with Tinker, Tailor and The Honourable Schoolboy. The latter is an interlude. You could skip from one to three, then come back to it. If you do, you'll appreciate it more.

The BBC TV series captured it all wonderfully, and Sir Alec Guiness as George Smiley was never better.
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05/24/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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message 1: by Aditya (new)

Aditya Mookerjee It seems, Ian Fleming was also in the secret service. What is apparent is, that Karla was always the man inside, he was the person who knew what was happening. In the view of Mr. Le Carre, The British secret service was given all types of information by the American and Soviet services. In the hierarchy, the British service was seen by itself in the lowest pecking order, and the Americans perceived themselves in the highest. Karla was liked by the British, as they were seen as closer to the overall world view of the British. The British secret service saw themselves as betraying the Soviets, because of reasons that they didn't understand, just like Stalin made the soldier defend Stalingrad, and Moscow, and couldn't explain, why the Germans were besieging the cities. There is no need for any spying, as the govt. of any nation is always in the know, about the inside, not needing to know about the outside. Karla had military objectives and concerns, like the spies in the second world war, not sabotage and defamation concerns.

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