First printing of Le Carré's masterpiece of moral ambiguity in Cold War espionage.
Near fine in near fine jacket.
"Lied by omission, as they all do, agents the world over. You teach them to cheat, to cover their tracks, and they cheat you as well."
Le Carré's third novel and his first extraordinary success, set in a post-war Germany newly divided by the Berlin Wall. As an MI6 officer assigned to Bonn and later, Hamburg, the author (born David John Moore Cornwell) published under a pseudonym by professional necessity; in 1964, his career in intelligence came to an abrupt end, and the widespread acclaim for THE SPY WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD allowed him to become, and stay, a full time writer – one of a select few 20th century popular novelists who enjoyed as much respect and esteem from literary peers and critics as from an enthusiastic and devoted public. THE SPY... was winner of the Gold Dagger award for best crime novel and the Edgar Award for best mystery novel, from the UK and US crime and mystery writing societies respectively; the first book to be so honored by both associations. Le Carré's "atmosphere of chilly hell" (J.B. Priestley) was the very antithesis of the coarse and brutal glamour of James Bond; but psychological and political realism were the least of his gifts: moral seriousness aside, he had style. "What set le Carré apart," wrote Anthony Lane in a moving tribute, "was his forensic skill. Ideas and passions, under his guiding hand, are never floated; they are tethered down and incarnated in his characters...He will be sorely missed."
Read more: Lane, "John le Carré Missed Nothing," The New Yorker.
London: Victor Gollancz Ltd, 1963. 7.25'' x 5''. Original blue cloth with gilt-lettered spine. In original unclipped (18/-) dust jacket. 222 pages. Spine lean, a couple spots to text block edges. Jacket beautiful, with only light sunning to spine and a bit of foxing to rear panel.
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