It is now beyond doubt that a mole, implanted decades ago by Moscow Centre, has burrowed his way into the highest echelons of British Intelligence. His treachery has already blown some of its most vital operations and its best networks. It is clear that the double agent is one of its own kind. But which one? George Smiley is assigned to identify him. And once identified, the traitor must be destroyed.
I bought this book at the local tip (or waste management facility as it’s really meant to be called). Did you know that you could purchase second hand books at the tip? I didn’t. I’ve now been introduced to a whole other way of acquiring books!
Anyway i was browsing titles and i saw it sitting there so i thought I’d give it a go. After all i didn’t have much to lose considering i only paid $1 for it!
The story follows George Smiley, a man who worked for British Intelligence and was retired. Information comes to light concerning a possible ‘mole’ in the service and he is commissioned to investigate.
I was immediately drawn into the story however after the first chapter i lost interest. I didn’t understand most of what they were talking about and i found it all extremely confusing – all i knew was there was a mole and the main character, George Smiley, had to find out who it was. I think this is the only reason i kept reading.
The character development was really interesting and done really well. It wasn’t obvious, instead it just seemed to flow throughout as a part of the story.
The story is quite slow paced, which i don’t have a problem with at all, it was more that i just had no idea what they were talking about half the time. Probably about three quarters of the way through though it started to make a bit more sense and the pace picked up a bit. It did make me wonder if the author wrote it this way somewhat intentionally so that you feel as George Smiley is feeling, and only after accumulating more and more evidence, things start to fall into place. Also i had no idea who the ‘mole’ was – i am unsure whether this is because i was confused as to what was going on or because the author did such a great job of writing the unexpected.
It wasn’t a super uplifting book and is more realistic in the sense that even though everything is resolved, everyone doesn’t live happily ever after in the end.
I would like to read this book again at some point, in the hope to gain more understanding of what is going on and i would recommend it however I’m not exactly sure who to! Maybe i am just ignorant of what an espionage novel entails.