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Not in United States? Choose your country's store to see books available for purchase. In the wake of the collapse of Lehman Brothers and with Britain on the brink of economic ruin, a young English couple takes a vacation in Antigua. Back in London, the couple is subjected to an interrogation by the British Secret service who also need their help. Their acquiescence will lead them on a precarious journey through Paris to a safe house in Switzerland, helpless pawns in a game of nations that reveals the unholy alliances between the Russian mafia, the City of London, the government and the competing factions of the British Secret Service. The Pigeon Tunnel. Those in Peril.
But this time it has been muted a bit and the plot takes a more predominant role. There were, however, two items that disappointed me. One involved a subplot regarding the money launderer's daughter, which could easily have been edited out.
I think it's high time for him to give us something a little different as it's getting a little predictable now.
I say give this one a try. It's good, and you won't be disappointed. Really, I can't say enough about the narrative and dialog.
It's worth the read for that alone. Soon, the guileless couple find themselves pawns in a deadly endgame w description: An implausible plotline including money-laundering, a bank on Cyprus and the Russian mafia This was a fast paced thriller from the Le Carre cannon. I enjoyed the writing style, but parts of it seemed convoluted and forced. But reading this was also bittersweet. As of this time, this was the last Le Carre book I had to read.
Now that I have read all the fiction, it is time to wait to see if he surprises us with one more. Nov 24, Judy rated it it was ok Shelves: The latest novel by John le Carre is getting positive reviews all over the place with sentiments exclaiming that the old le Carre is back and that he has dropped the preaching tone of his last few efforts.
Personally, I like it when he preaches to us about the ills of our modern world. In Our Kind of Traitor, I felt the master of spy literature was holding back just a tad and I purely hated the way this novel ended. I just felt lost through much of the story, but that could be because I do not u The latest novel by John le Carre is getting positive reviews all over the place with sentiments exclaiming that the old le Carre is back and that he has dropped the preaching tone of his last few efforts.
I just felt lost through much of the story, but that could be because I do not understand global finance.
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Not one bit. My take is that this is a gangster-trying-to-go-straight story. Percolating beneath that is the picture of British government being so in the grip of vested interests and greedy politicians that the true traitor lies there. Is that the meaning of the title? A Russian gangster, an idealistic young teacher from Oxford, his much more realistic girlfriend, the usual failed spy and the usual rogue spy; all the elements are there but it didn't come together well for me.
John le Carre has stumped me before. My husband liked Our Kind of Traitor just fine and explained some of it to me. If you have read it, liked it and are now laughing up your sleeve about me, please View all 10 comments. It was that bad. Like everyone else on here I have my favourite authors who I know that once I open their books, I will be entertained from start to finish.
I do however try to broaden my horizons and try books by authors that maybe I've previously shied away from. I did this with both Andy McNab and Chris Ryan and have been plesantly surprised and still continue to read books by these authors.
Unfortunately this book had absolutely nothing to recommend it. The plot as far as I could follow was just silly and the excution of it by the author is as poor as anything else I have read. This has to be the worst book that I have read in a long time.
You might ask, why did I continue to read the book?
Our Kind of Traitor by John le Carré
This is a good question. I generally try to finish all books that I start, for no other reason other than I have read some good books that have started slowly. Finally if any of you Goodreads people know of any good books by Le Carre, then I would be very grateful if you could point me in the right direction.
Thank you Dec 23, Helen rated it really liked it Shelves: Not at the level of The Spy Who Came in From the Cold or the Smiley series, but still, very very good, and better than most of the stuff that le Carre has written since the end of the cold war. What's great about it? His effortless plotting and his thorough knowledge of the amorality of the world's politics. It was a thrilling read. I devoured it over a period of two days, and was sorry when it came to an end.
For my taste, there were too many pages of slangy conversation as exposition, and not Not at the level of The Spy Who Came in From the Cold or the Smiley series, but still, very very good, and better than most of the stuff that le Carre has written since the end of the cold war. For my taste, there were too many pages of slangy conversation as exposition, and not nearly enough soaring passages of bleak prose, at which le Carre is unparalleled.
Too much show; not enough tell. Still, second tier le Carre is still better than the vast majority of espionage writers working today. I gave it only four stars because his earlier books are masterpieces of literature, not just masterpieces of literary espionage.
Jan 02, Mal Warwick rated it liked it Shelves: David John Moore Cornwell--the man the world has come to know as John le Carre--was the son of a con man and a mother he met only at age His frequently troubled life experiences afforded him the real-world experience that lent such authenticity and depth to the Cold War espionage novels he wrote so ably in the decades to come.
Le Carre's conflicted alter ego, George Smiley, the protagoni David John Moore Cornwell--the man the world has come to know as John le Carre--was the son of a con man and a mother he met only at age Le Carre's conflicted alter ego, George Smiley, the protagonist of The Spy Who Came in from the Cold and other early le Carre novels, embodied the inner doubts of that seemingly simpler time that foreshadowed the distrust and insecurities of the 60s and 70s, once we had lost our faith in the institutions that dominated our world.
When the Berlin Wall fell in , le Carre skillfully adapted, turning to writing about the more complex, multipolar world that has become ever more familiar to us. His field of battle was still espionage. But his subtext, increasingly, was politics--politics on the grand, international scale. Le Carre's profound distaste for U.
Similarly, he showed his hand most dramatically in The Constant Gardener for the large, multinational corporations that have come to overshadow the lives we lead. His characters still emerged as fully formed human beings, for the most part. But his writing took on a moralistic tone that some readers found objectionable.
Le Carre's latest work, Our Kind of Traitor, bears a stronger thematic resemblance to the Smiley novels than most of his other recent books.
The protagonist--a young, unmarried English couple, actually--found themselves mysteriously caught up in a bizarre espionage caper more complex than any George Smiley might have conjured up. The story revolves around a Russian mafia boss who proudly calls himself the world's "number one money-launderer" and the attempts of a renegade in the English secret service to bring him and his family to asylum in Britain.
In the renegade agent's bruising battles with the powers that be to gain the authority for his plan, and in the doubts and recriminations of the young couple he has dragged into the action, there is much that's reminiscent of Smiley's tortured qualms about the moral implications of his work.
Four decades later, MI6 is a different beast, of course--a shadow of its former self, sometimes struggling to justify its existence. Mar 16, Patrick rated it it was ok. For me at least, I think the problem was that it lacked verisimilitude.
I'm sure John le Carre has forgotten more about the inner workings of the intelligence services than I will ever know, although at nearly 80, I wonder if he is quite as up to speed on how and to some extent, if MI6 go about infiltrating Russian crime groups as he was on the Cold War. Or, for that matter, why Dima, the Russian, would ever have decided to try to use him as a go-between with the UK Government.
And while he was admittedly lightly drawn, I never really understood why said character, Perry, would accept the job either. It might have been simply that I wasn't paying enough attention, but I never got my head around quite what the deal that Dima was trying to cut with the UK actually was - only that it involved betraying some of his criminal confederates, whom he felt had betrayed him. Nor did I grasp in more than the vaguest way what it was that the sinister Aubrey Longrigg MP a kind of melding of George Osborne and Peter Mandelson was trying to gain from working with them.
The book wasn't without its redeeming features.
I quite liked the sub-plot about Dima's rather lonely lost children. And the spy, Luke, with his shambolic private life and nagging personal doubts about his mission, felt like he'd wandered in from a probably rather better Graham Greene novel. By the end, I can't help thinking that le Carre is most at home working against the backdrop of the cold war. Maybe Putin's desire to reignite it if that isn't the wrong term will provide the backdrop for one last great le Carre spy thriller This was the first John le Carre book which I have picked up in a while.
It came with high literary acclaim, and so I was quite looking forward to reading it. Sadly I was quite disappointed with it, there was no real sense of suspense, and it seemed quite laboured and ponderous, not the le Carre books I remember of old.
A professional couple from England, Perry and Gail, are on a tennis holiday in Antigua, when they are forcibly befriended by Dima. He is a Russian money launderer for the Vory, bu This was the first John le Carre book which I have picked up in a while. He is a Russian money launderer for the Vory, but he wants him and his family relocated, safely, to London under new identities.
He wants Perry to broker the deal with the British intelligence agencies, a tall order for a University lecturer. Feeling quite sympathetic towards Dima and his family, Perry tries his best. The carrot Dima dangles before the intelligence community, is his vast knowledge of financial shady dealings throughout the world, including London.
I couldn't really get to feel any affinity with the various characters. The tale was confusing in places, and I found myself going back several pages and rereading pieces, trying to make sense of it all. May 13, Sketchbook rated it it was ok.
If you're a Russian godfather who wants to spill evil banking beans involving the west, do you just snaffle a cute UK couple on holiday in Antigua and grunt, "Take me to your leader"?
LeC moves briskly fr the Cold War to the Russ mafia and corrupt banking, suggested by news stories.
Very good. Meantime, we'd all like to know his theories on the young UK spy found dead at h If you're a Russian godfather who wants to spill evil banking beans involving the west, do you just snaffle a cute UK couple on holiday in Antigua and grunt, "Take me to your leader"? Meantime, we'd all like to know his theories on the young UK spy found dead at home locked in a duffel bag. Which of two countries dunit? If what you know of the world comes from newspapers, or from the T.
If you have any mature sense at all then I think you appreciate this may be true. All right - so, I'm naive and childish, It's the only way I can go on living in my personally simplified version of reality. Reading Le Carre though connects me with another, darker, reality, one I fear might be closer to the truth, whether it's "cold war", or whate If what you know of the world comes from newspapers, or from the T.
Reading Le Carre though connects me with another, darker, reality, one I fear might be closer to the truth, whether it's "cold war", or whatever your latter day nightmare has been: Is your pension screwed? Are you wondering where all your money's gone? Are you wondering why the once godlike "Banking Industry" has brought the western world to ruin, and has had to bailed out by the humble, unwashed taxpayer - i. Read this book. Our Kind of Traitor returns to Russia, post "cold war", to Russian "organised crime", to pan European gangsterism, and "money laundering" on a scale that will leave you gasping for breath and praying that nothing you've read here can possibly be true?
All of the Le Carre ingredients are present - fascinating characters, from the leading to the minor, also an ability to winkle out the archetypically "heroic" in the most sympathetic yet also the most odious of character. I'm a fan of Le Carre because for me no one else does a "spy story" that I can even remotely believe in.
This is the best book I've read all year. Jul 29, James Schubring rated it really liked it. There is always more potential in a John le Carre novel than in anyone else writing books. There is also, almost always, some experimental flaw that's bigger than anyone else's. I've learned to take the good and ignore the bad. He writes bigger books than almost anyone else, enthralling even when they're flawed.
Here we have the recruitment of a moneyman from the Russian mafia by the British Secret Service. Dima, 'our kind of traitor,' is the most interesting, wound-up, larger-than-life, nervy ch There is always more potential in a John le Carre novel than in anyone else writing books.
Our Kind of Traitor
Dima, 'our kind of traitor,' is the most interesting, wound-up, larger-than-life, nervy character I can remember reading in years. He is the beating pulse of this tale, a man trying to get out of the life before new masters in the mafia kill him and his family.
He runs across a pair of young Brits on vacation and co-opts them into becoming couriers for him, a funnel to deliver his desperation back to the real spies in London. Of course, the people he connects up with are good spies, but they report back to a political system, one already half owned by Dima's mafia bosses.
The tale gets bogged down in the procedure of the spy system and Dima leaves the book for most of the vast middle. Also, the main characters for most of the story, the British couple, aren't terribly interesting. You will see the unhappy ending coming from a distance off, especially if you know and like le Carre's previous offerings. The pleasure of meeting Dima is worth the pain of the flaws. This is the best book I've read by le Carre since the Smiley novels.
Please enjoy. Jun 28, Joe Ollinger rated it liked it. LeCarre tends to write slower, more cerebral stuff, and this is no exception. This is a more of a drama set in the world of espionage than a spy thriller.
The characters are vivid and the world feels quite real. The downside of this is that the book spends a lot of time on mundane details of character, and the premise and plot are more believable than fun. The work splits its narrative into the perspectives of several characters, working through their thoughts ind feelings in much detail. This bo LeCarre tends to write slower, more cerebral stuff, and this is no exception. This book is for those who favor heavy characterization and characters that are detailed and rich over quick pacing and an eventful plot.
LeCarre didn't set out with a bone to pick politically or anything like that, and this book doesn't take on any "issues.
For my part, I can appreciate the quality of the prose and the understated realism of the story, but at the end of the day I did not get much actual enjoyment from the novel, and there's not much to take away in terms of theme or message. This was my first spy thriller novel by this author. It was SO hard for me to get into it.
This type of writing works for some people, it's just not my style. I chose not to finish it. That's not to say others wouldn't find it worth the time to make it to the end. I think the author is a talented writer, I'm just not the reader he is writing for. I received this as an advance uncorrected proof that I won This was my first spy thriller novel by this author. I received this as an advance uncorrected proof that I won in a Goodreads giveaway.
Jun 10, Spectre rated it liked it. Seldom does a LeCarre novel disappoint and this book is no exception. A British couple are innocently embroiled in the defection of a high level Russian crime boss and his family. What is disappointing is the reality posed by the author- there are too many 'traitors' in upper echelons of government, the powerful are able to break the law without consequence, government agencies can not act quickly even when lives are at risk, and in the world of diplomacy and politics trust is a rare commodity.
There are some positive similarities to "The Little Drummer Girl" particularly when Hector prepares Perry and Gail for their role in the defection. What is not disappointing is that LeCarre has so many great novels to choose from. Aug 05, Vivek rated it really liked it. Superb writing that keeps the tension throughout the book without a single car chase or shootout. The best spy writer of the Cold war era is just as good 20 years after the Wall fell.
Great story-telling, flawed human characters, fast paced narration that keeps the imagination working. Definitely worth reading. View all 3 comments. La fin d'ailleurs est assez brutale et nous laisse vraiment sur notre faim. Denn von Spannung - keine Spur. Und siehe da Oder Dima, der russische Oligarch, der England liebt und bewundert und alle britischen Literaturklassiker besitzt, ohne vermutlich einen einzigen davon gelesen zu haben.
Weshalb dann trotzdem nicht die volle Punktzahl? Weil bis zur ca. Dec 30, William Breakstone rated it it was amazing. I have read and enjoyed every one. His latest work is Our Kind of Hero, and has been critically acclaimed as one of his best.
The story opens at a Caribbean island resort, where Oxford professor Perry Makepiece is vacationing with his long-time companion Gail Perkins. This immediately impresses Dima, and the two and Gail become intimate friends. A bit too intimate, it turns out. He confides all this with Perry, and asks the Oxford Don if he is in reality a spy.
Dima has some state secrets that should very much interest them, and he proceeds to fill Perry in. Le Carre is nearing his 70th birthday, but has lost none of his narrative powers.
His fans are many; then again there are readers who have never taken a liking to his style. Paperback —. Buy the Audiobook Download: Apple Audible downpour eMusic audiobooks. Add to Cart.
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