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  • A Murder of Quality

  • By: John le Carré
  • Narrated by: Michael Jayston
  • Length: 4 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 24
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 24

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'. Miss Ailsa Brimley is in a quandary. She's received a peculiar letter from Mrs Stella Rode, saying that she fears her husband – an assistant master at Carne School - is trying to kill her. Reluctant to go to the police, Miss Brimley calls upon her old wartime colleague, George Smiley.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • standard held

  • By david x kelly on 17-03-2016

standard held

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 17-03-2016

Where does A Murder of Quality rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I very much enjoyed this thriller but it is not my favourite Le Carre. It maybe that the genre, its different, moves away from the cold war, and revolves around a private school for which I personally hold very negative memories. But I have to say that the writing is quite brilliant as per usual.I must also also mention Michael Jayston who adds another dimension to the written word (that I have read previously with admiration). He is clear and concise and the change to tone of voice when characterising females in the narrative is brilliant.I have given this an overall 4 star rating (rather than my usual almost automatic 5 for Le Carre) but please don't let that discourage. Its a fine story with fine characterisation and a beautiful example of how to use the English language to its best. Highly recommended.

  • The Spy Who Came in from the Cold

  • By: John le Carré
  • Narrated by: Michael Jayston
  • Length: 7 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 135
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 128
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 126

Alec Leamas has ended his time in Berlin. Or his time has ended him. The last of his Eastern agents has been killed, like the others, by the Abteilung. Back at the Circus, Leamas is put on the shelf. He turns to drunkenness and dishonesty and finally disappears from view, a seemingly broken man. But unknown to anyone except George Smiley and his master, Control, Leamas has been given his toughest mission ever. He will have to be himself but more so.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Third reading and listening ....still most brilliant.

  • By david x kelly on 09-03-2016

Third reading and listening ....still most brilliant.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-03-2016

Le Carre is the most memorable author of the Cold War period and also beyond and those who argue the spy genre can never be literature are so wrong. I used to read Maugham for the pleasure of reading the finest English. I read Le Carre for the same reason immeasurably enhanced by the excitement of outstanding plot and finely observed characterisation.

Michael Jayston reads with an authority and dramatisation that adds significant further quality to this overall piece of finely crafted literature.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • John le Carré

  • The Biography
  • By: Adam Sisman
  • Narrated by: Michael Jayston
  • Length: 26 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 6

In this definitive biography - blessed by John le Carré himself - Adam Sisman reveals the man behind the best-selling persona. In John le Carré, Sisman shines a spotlight on David Cornwell, an expert at hiding in plain sight - "born to lying," he wrote in 2002, "bred to it, trained to it by an industry that lies for a living, practiced in it as a novelist."

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • le Carre + Sisman = Brilliance

  • By david x kelly on 28-02-2016

le Carre + Sisman = Brilliance

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 28-02-2016

I have read every novel by Mr Le Carre and have always loved his elegant style, his brilliance in character formation and his intricate plots that have been reflective of, and highly relevant to, the society in which we live.

Mr Sisman has produced a number of brilliant biographies over the last couple of decades, or maybe more, but none has been more insightful or better crafted than this which has an edge so similar to the work of Le Carre himself.

I identify closely with the issues that have confronted David Cornwell throughout his life from his early loss of mother to his separation, maybe more positive than negative, from a disreputable father and the introversion and loneliness that that can engender. I also share his abhorrence of political correctness and its practitioners who stifle rational debate with despicable ad hominem attacks.

i have both read this and listened to the book and I feel that as a result of Mr Sisman's work I can now directly admire the man as much, if not more, than I admire his literary output.

A most brilliant executed piece of work about a most brilliant man ...so highly recommended

1 of 1 people found this review helpful