Wednesday, October 19, 2011

le Carré

I'm re-reading Smiley's People, not just because I despair of ever seeing Tinker, Tailor in my philistine city, but because I need to reread le Carré from time to time. Why? That's harder to answer. For the primary pleasure of reading a sentence and being so awed by it that the book has to be allowed to rest for a moment while you look away, gather yourself and return to reading the sentence over again.

What le Carré slows down in his writing, I slow down even more while reading. In a recent interview, he said, when asked how he felt about being 80, "It was always in the contract, I just didn’t know they would deliver so soon."

Now he says he has to find out if he can still write. Just in case he finds he can't, there's always Smiley. 

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