This is a war… It's graphic and unpleasant because it's fought on a tiny scale, at close range; fought with a wastage of innocent life sometimes, I admit. But it's nothing, nothing at all beside other wars – the last or the next."
Alex Leamas is tired. It's the 1960s, he's been out in the cold for years, spying in the shadow of the Berlin Wall for his British masters. He has seen too many good agents murdered for their troubles. Now Control wants to bring him in at last - but only after one final assignment.
He must travel deep into the heart of Communist Germany and betray his country, a job that he will do with his usual cynical professionalism. But when George Smiley tries to help a young woman Leamas has befriended, Leamas's mission may prove to be the worst thing he could ever have done.
The Spy Who Came in From the Cold is one of the most popular and influential spy novels in literary history, and its success upon publication in 1963 earned John Le Carré acclaim rivalled only by Ian Fleming.
'He can communicate emotion, from sweating fear to despairing love, with terse and compassionate conviction. Above all, he can tell a tale.' Sunday Times
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 224 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 17 mm
The best spy story I have ever read -- Graham Greene
The master storyteller ... has lost none of his cunning -- A. N. Wilson
I have re-read The Spy Who Came In From The Cold over and over again since I first encountered it in my teens, just to remind myself how extraordinary a work of fiction can be. * Malcolm Gladwell *
One of those very rare novels that changes the way you look at the world. Unflinching, highly sophisticated, superb. * William Boyd *
You may also be interested in...
“The Perfect Spy Novel”
Get an image in your head of the perfect spy novel. Picture high up Government Agencies constantly watching you. Picture men single handedly trying to bring entire nations to their knees. Picture shootings in the... More
“The Spy Who Came in from the Cold”
With the Cold War at its most frosty, Alec Leamas, former Station Head of the West Berlin office of the British Intelligence Service, is sent back to London in disgrace after his best asset is assassinated during a... More
Please sign in to write a review
Would you like to proceed to the App store to download the Waterstones App?
Please note that owing to current COVID-19 restrictions, many of our shops are closed. Find out more by clicking here.