Call for the Dead - John le Carré

Call for the Dead

By John le Carré

  • Release Date: 2012-10-02
  • Genre: Mysteries & Thrillers
Score: 4.5
From 400 Ratings


From the New York Times bestselling author of A Legacy of Spies. 

"Go back to Whitehall and look for more spies on your drawing boards."
George Smiley is no one's idea of a spy—which is perhaps why he's such a natural. But Smiley apparently made a mistake. After a routine security interview, he concluded that the affable Samuel Fennan had nothing to hide. Why, then, did the man from the Foreign Office shoot himself in the head only hours later? Or did he?

The heart-stopping tale of intrigue that launched both novelist and spy, Call for the Dead is an essential introduction to le Carré's chillingly amoral universe.


  • A Marvelous Debut

    By Scott's take on things
    I’ve read many Le Carre novels, usually sticking to what are considered his best, starting with The Spy Who Came in from the Cold. I’ve loved them all. So I decided to give his very first one a try, thinking it might be a bit rough around the edges. I was wrong. Call for the Dead is superb and showcases all of Le Carre’s brilliance — complex plot, psychological depth, gritty scenes of winter life, and wonderful characters, including the best of them all, our dumpy, frail genius, George Smiley.
  • A surprise ending ... I’ll not tell

    By birdrr
    Having watched the movie (with James Mason, Simone Signoret, Maximillian Schell) I was ready for a sexy scene with our favorite aging spy, George Smiley (not easy to imagine). Well it never happens in the book. Lots of other events are a surprise in the book. Even several times seeing the movie did not prepare me for the real story being told (in the book). The movie is not an improvement on the book ... rather disappointing that the demand for sex can screw up a good story.
  • Exciting yet quiet

    By NickLabans
    George Smiley - the perennially underestimated man uses his great mind to unravel mystery. Warm and very engaging.
  • My new favorite author

    By BenReading
    Great book to begin with
  • All the essentials

    By EagleDad409
    All of Le Carre's signature skills, insights and character development techniques are found in this initial effort. The author's supplemental introduction is most valuable for someone just getting into his immense body of work. He's a master of this genre, and thankfully is still producing. He adapts well with the changing world, but even so, a read of his Cold War titles always seems "current," as history has a way of repeating itself.
  • Couldn't Put It Down

    By Colleen Nunan
    This a a great story. I truly couldn't put it down.