Reposting this 2013 review because the Kindle version is on sale for $1.99. If you like to start at the beginning of a series, this is the first of the George Smiley novels.
I really hate reading books out of order. When I decided to read a Le Carré novel, Call for the Dead was not available as an audiobook or kindle book. But with the publicity from the Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy movie, many of Le Carré’s novels are coming back into print or moving to digital formats.
Over Christmas I picked up the first two novels in the series from an Audible.com sale. I knew going in that the reputation of these books is that while they are interesting back story to George Smiley, they are not Le Carré’s best work. He originally wrote them while working as a real spy and it was only after his third novel, The Spy Who Came in From the Cold, took off that Le Carré became a full time author.
This is the third of Le Carré’s novels that I have read. In the series I started with the third book, which only has George Smiley as a marginal character. Then I read Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, which brings Smiley back to the center stage (and re-sets the timeline from the first two books making Smiley about 10 years younger).