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A Most Wanted Man

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About the Author

John le Carr� was born in 1931. After attending the universities of Berne and Oxford, he spent five years in the British Foreign Service. The Spy Who Came in From the Cold, his third book, secured him a worldwide reputation. He is the author of twenty-one novels; including Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy; A Perfect Spy, and The Constant Gardener. His books have been translated into thirty-six languages. He lives in England.


A relatively minor work from le Carre (The Constant Gardener), with less at stake than usual, this fairly straightforward self-read novel is nonetheless compelling for its vividly drawn characters, especially disenchanted British banker Tommy Brue and idealistic civil rights lawyer Annabel Richter. Le Carre lucidly and adeptly handles both the various accents and the pauses and emphases; indeed, the words and phrases he stresses help to clarify motivations even his characters do not fully grasp. Recommended for popular collections. [Unabridged retail-edition CD and digital download available from S. & S. Audio, with Roger Rees reading; watch the book trailer at; the Scribner hc was "highly recommended," LJ 9/1/08.-Ed.]-Michael Adams, CUNY Graduate Ctr. Lib. Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

When boxer Melik Oktay and his mother, both Turkish Muslims living in Hamburg, take in a street person calling himself Issa at the start of this morally complex thriller from le CarrE (The Mission Song), they set off a chain of events implicating intelligence agencies from three countries. Issa, who claims to be a Muslim medical student, is, in fact, a wanted terrorist and the son of Grigori Karpov, a Red Army colonel whose considerable assets are concealed in a mysterious portfolio at a Hamburg bank. Tommy Brue, a stereotypical flawed everyman caught up in the machinations of spies and counterspies, enters the plot when Issa's attorney seeks to claim these assets. The book works best in its depiction of the rivalries besetting even post-9/11 intelligence agencies that should be allies, but none of the characters is as memorable as George Smiley or Magnus Pym. Still, even a lesser le CarrE effort is far above the common run of thrillers. (Oct.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

"Highly recommended." -- Library Journal
"Astounding, nearly perfect ... beautifully paced, awesomely crafted ... desperately readable" -- John Freeman, San Francisco Chronicle
"Intricately plotted, beautifully written, propulsive, morally engaged, but timely as today's headlines.... The protagonists are brilliantly drawn." -- Tim Rutten, Los Angeles Times
"As sharp as he ever was.... Le Carre ... remains a class above his neighbors on the bestseller list." -- Jeffrey Westhoff, Chicago Sun-Times
"Turn the pages slowly, because an era is passing, and with it, an illuminating view of the troubled keepers of an uneasy peace." -- James F. Sweeney, Cleveland Plain Dealer
"Le Carr�'s ... secret agents exist in a world of stalemate, moral compromise, ambiguity and betrayal... Like his books, le Carr� is a mix of unblinking realism and hopeful humanism." -- Jill Lawless, Associated Press
"What le Carr� has always done terrifically is to capture the nuances of the spying game. His spooks are wonderful... In A Most Wanted Man you are, unlike the modern world, in thrillingly deft, safe hands." -- The Guadian (UK)
"This is le Carr�'s strongest, most powerful novel... Extraordinary." -- Alan Furst, New York Times Book Review (cover review)
"An instant classic... A provocative and incendiary ending that only le Carr�, the master, can pull off." -- USA Today
"Breaks notable new ground... Le Carr�'s dialogue has snap, rhythm and wit... immaculate timing." -- Peter Wolfe, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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