Call for the Dead, Paperback
2 out of 5 (1 rating)


After a routine security check by George Smiley, civil servant Samuel Fennan apparently kills himself.

When Smiley finds Circus head Maston is trying to blame him for the man's death, he begins his own investigation, meeting with Fennan's widow to find out what could have led him to such desperation.

But on the very day that Smiley is ordered off the enquiry he receives an urgent letter from the dead man.

Do the East Germans - and their agents - know more about this man's death than the Circus previously imagined?

Le Carre's debut novel, Call for the Dead, introduced the tenacious and retiring George Smiley in a gripping tale of espionage and deceit.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Crime & mystery
  • ISBN: 9780141198286



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Hmmm. I've heard so much about John le Carré; perhaps this wasn't a good place to start, but I have a thing about being chronological. (I read The Magician's Nephew first, in the Narnia series. Really.) It's a decent spy-thriller/mystery, but it didn't have anything else that got its hooks into me: Smiley was the only potentially interesting character, and he spent a lot of the time sick in bed... The other characters honestly blurred into each other.The mystery itself is straight-forward: I figured it out somewhere before page fifty. Not all the details, perhaps, but the basic outline.Overall, meh.

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