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The City Of Invention

The book reviews of UK children's author, Brian Keaney

Arguably The Most Authentic Espionage Thriller Ever Written

The Spy Who Came In from the Cold - John le Carré

A grainy depiction of cold-warriors whose values have become so compromised as to be interchangeable, The Spy Who Came In From The Cold has reasonable claim to being the most authentic and compelling espionage novel ever created. There’s an existentialist feeling about the moral fog which surrounds the central character Alex Leamas, a spy whose cover is blown at the beginning of the narrative, as he attempts to manouevre in a world over which he has almost no control. In terms of plot structure, it’s a masterpiece – a series of partial revelations culminating in a final twist in which everything becomes clear to protagonist and reader simultaneously. Despite emerging from a very particular set of historical circumstances, twenty years after the collapse of the Berlin Wall this novel remains remarkably fresh and undated.