Audiobook(CD - Unabridged)

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Overview

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’. This dramatisation, set in London in the late 1950s, finds Smiley engaged in the humdrum job of security vetting. But when a Foreign Office civil servant commits suicide after an apparently unproblematic interview, Smiley is baffled. Refusing to believe that Fennan shot himself soon after making a cup of cocoa and asking the exchange to telephone him in the morning, Smiley decides to investigate - only to uncover a murderous conspiracy with its roots in his own secret wartime past. Starring the award-winning Simon Russell Beale as Smiley, and with a distinguished cast including Kenneth Cranham, Eleanor Bron and Anna Chancellor, this tense, thrilling dramatisation perfectly captures the atmosphere of le Carré's masterful début novel.

2 CDs. 1 hr 30 mins.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781408400838
Publisher: B B C Worldwide Americas
Publication date: 06/04/2009
Edition description: Unabridged
Pages: 1
Sales rank: 960,119
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 5.00(h) x 11.00(d)

About the Author

John le Carré is the nom de plume of David John Moore Cornwell, who was born in 1931 in Poole, Dorset and educated at Sherborne School, the University of Berne (where he studied German literature for a year) and at Lincoln College, Oxford, where he graduated with a first-class degree in modern languages. He taught at Eton from 1956 to 1958 and was a member of the British Foreign Service from 1959 to 1964, serving first as Second Secretary in the British Embassy in Bonn and subsequently as political consul in Hamburg. His first novel, a story of espionage called Call for the Dead, was published in 1961. It was quickly followed in 1962 by A Murder of Quality, a mystery story set in an English public school. His third novel, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, secured him a wide reputation, and was made into a successful film starring Richard Burton. This was followed by The Looking Glass War, A Small Town in Germany and The Naive and Sentimental Lover. However, the success of his third novel was consolidated by the acclaim for his trilogy Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Honourable Schoolboy and Smiley's People. Next came The Little Drummer Girl, which was a departure from the Smiley novels, and dealt with the Arab-Israeli conflict in the Middle East. This was followed by his most autobiographical novel, A Perfect Spy. Then came The Russia House, The Secret Pilgrim, The Night Manager, Our Game, The Tailor of Panama, Single & Single, The Constant Gardener, Absolute Friends, The Mission Song and A Delicate Truth. As well as The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, many other le Carré novels have been made into films or television series. Alec Guinness starred as George Smiley in the TV mini-series of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and Smiley's People, while Denholm Elliott took on the role for A Murder of Quality. The 2011 remake of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy starred Gary Oldman as Smiley, and featured a stellar cast including Colin Firth and Benedict Cumberbatch. A Most Wanted Man (2013) starred Philip Seymour Hoffman in one of his last roles, and 2014 saw the release of Our Kind of Traitor, featuring Ewan McGregor, Damian Lewis and Naomie Harris. David Cornwell has won many prestigious prizes and awards for his novels over the years. He is an Honorary Fellow of Lincoln College, Oxford and has Honorary Doctorates at the University of Bern and Oxford University. He has won the Crime Writers' Association Gold Dagger twice (for The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, which also won him the Dagger of Daggers in 2005, and The Honourable Schoolboy) and in 1988 he won the Diamond Dagger for Lifetime Achievement. He donated his literary archive, containing 85 boxes of draft manuscripts, to the Bodleian Library in 2010.

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Call for the Dead 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
Anonymous 11 months ago
Wow. The first novel by Le Carre is as exciting as the other latter Smiley’s which I read before I knew about this one. Tinker tailor was my first read and I was hooked!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After the newest "Tinker" movie I started looking for the books. I just finished this book on my nook for iPad and Samsung GS4. I loved the book. It was fresh and Smiley made for a great spy without being a 007 styled character. The app works great and synced across my mac and android device s without a hitch. If you look like this genre at all you need to read this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
George Smiley feels he must hand in his resignation when his superiors refuse to believe his claim that a man he has interviewed has been murdered. They stubbornly stick to the theory that he committed suicide. An anonymous letter naming him as a spy leads to his being interviewed by Smiley who confidently believes the allegation is unfounded. This novel is action from page one to the end with several murders and the appearance of some of the oppositions top spies. A great read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
first+George+smiley+book+a+great+read
otterpopmusic on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I liked this a lot, but gave it just the 3 stars because when I can see a plot point coming before the seasoned spy does, there's a problem.
Hagelstein on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Originally published in 1961, Call for the Dead is John Le Carre¿s masterful first novel, in which the everyman spy George Smiley is introduced. Part mystery and part espionage story, it combines police and intelligence work and shows members of both professions working together. Smiley is portrayed as a man with real problems having nothing to do with his job, highly intelligent, cynical, and utterly committed to unlodging the truth from whatever dark corner it has hidden. Espionage with a human face and very satisfying to read.
Crowyhead on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the first George Smiley book, and the first I've read. I wasn't 100% thrilled by it, but I intend to read more of the Smiley books, since I know they're sort of classics of espionage/mystery fiction, and they've come to me highly recommended. I like mysteries, but one of my requirements of a mystery series is that I must become slightly enchanted with the sleuth -- just the puzzle of the mystery isn't enough. I'm not quite in love with George Smiley yet, but I am well disposed toward him, so I will give Le Carre another chance. :)
name99 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
After enjoying _The Spy who came in from the Cold_, I thought I'd try LeCarre's first book.This is written as a whodunnit, not as a spy novel, and is structured in the usual whodunnit fashion: masses of details from which the reader is supposed to pick out the clues. I usually don't enjoy this sort of thing, and these were no exceptions. I'm glad he switched to an alternative genre.
dr_zirk on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Call for the Dead is an interesting start to John Le Carre's career, featuring the introduction of his great character George Smiley and a further introduction to his unique take on the shadowy and dangerous world of Cold War intelligence work. This volume combines Le Carre's trademark espionage capers with a murder mystery (or two) and does so elegantly and entertainingly. An intriguing beginning to the career of a major twentieth-century author.
fourbears on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a reread. Probably read it back in the 60ies or 70ies when Iwas really crazy about spy novels. I'm rereading LeCarre's old onesthough. He's good. This one introduces the character of George Smileywho figures in the best of his spy fiction a decade later (Books likeTinker, Tailer, Soldier, Spy, The Honorable Schoolboy and Smiley'sPeople).Smiley, an secret intelligence officer , interviews a Foreign Officeofficial about whom his bosses have received an anonymous lettersaying he's a Communist. Smiley likes the guy and finds that there'snothing against him but left leaning in his youth (with manyothers--it was the 1930ies). Then the guy leaves a wake up call for8:30 AM and commits suicide. Or did he? If he really was a spy, Smileymade a huge mistake....
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love LeCarre & Smiley.
glauver More than 1 year ago
John Le Carre' had not yet become the spy writer who elevated the form to literature when he wrote his debut novel. He introduced his most famous character, George Smiley, in its pages. Smiley had not yet become the mythic figure who navigated his way through the Karla trilogy. Even though it is very short, Call For The Dead has a tension that some of the later stories lack. The Le Carre' theme of the agent undone by his bureaucratic superiors is already part of this book. Any fan of the Smiley stories or spy fiction in general should check this book out.
lmcNYC More than 1 year ago
an agent in a downwards spiral, twists, deception, intrigue. Magnificent.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Must read series looking forward to the rest.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I recently decided to go back and re-read Le Carre on Nook, starting with this book. It's not only a great read, again, it also worked quite well on the reader. If you liked him then, you will probably still like him now; if this author is new to you, you won't be disappointed.
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