Our Kind of TraitoreBook - 2010
What else Dima wants is the engine that drives John le Carré's majestic, thrilling, tragic, funny, and utterly engrossing new novel of greed and corruption, from the arctic hells of the gulag archipelago to a billionaire's yacht anchored off the Adriatic Coast; to the Men's Final of the French Open tennis championships at the Roland Garros stadium; to two murky Swiss bankers dubbed Peter and the Wolf; and finally and fatally to a Swiss alpine resort nestling in the shadow of the north face of the Eiger and the story's terrifying end.
From the critics
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The husband and wife, not the images of Ewan McGregor and Naomie Harris in the film:
Perry and Gail made a strikingly attractive pair. Nature had provided Gail with long, shapely legs and arms, high, small breasts, a lissom body, English skin, fine gold hair and a smile to light the gloomiest corners of life. Perry had a different sort of Englishness, being lank and at first sight dislocated, with a long neck and prominent Adam’s apple. His stride was ungainly, he seemed to topple and his ears protruded. At his State school he had been awarded the nickname of Giraffe, until those unwise enough to use it learned their lesson. But with manhood he had acquired—unconsciously, which only made it more impressive-a precarious but undoubted grace. He had a mop of brown curls, a wide, freckled forehead, and large, bespectacled eyes that gave out an air of angelic perplexity.
Perry the closet sybarite who treated himself to unpredictable bursts of luxury before hurrying back to his garret.
‘I’ll do it for Dima. I’ll even do it for you people. But I’ll do it alone or not at all.’
Luke has long ago given up trying to judge the world by its face. He has studied these faces numberless times, but still finds nothing in them he wouldn’t find across the desk from him in any Hampstead estate agent’s office, or in any gathering of black-suited, black-brief-cased, business types in the bar of any smart hotel from Moscow to Bogotá.
‘You’re on record as believing that our green and pleasant land is in dire need of saving from itself. I happen to share that opinion. I’ve studied the disease, I’ve lived in the swamp. It is my informed conclusion that we are suffering, as an ex-great nation, from top-down corporate rot. And that’s not just the judgement of an ailing old fart. A lot of people in my Service make a profession of not seeing things in black and white. Do not confuse me with them. I’m a late-onset, red-toothed radical with balls. Still with me?’
He went to bed, turned on the BBC World News and switched it off again. Half-truths. Quarter-truths.
Aubrey Longrigg was balding, mean and beaky, as became a man famous for his intolerance of lesser minds than his own. Under the Adriatic sun, his unappetizing features have turned a flaming pink, and the rimless spectacles do little to alter the impression of a fifty-year-old bank clerk—unless, like Luke, you have heard tales of the restless ambition that drives him, the unforgiving intellect that had made the fourth floor a swirling hothouse of innovative ideas and feuding barons, and of his improbable attraction to a certain kind of woman—the kind presumably that gets a kick out of being intellectually belittled—
Why on earth a former official from the British Embassy in Bogotá should have been sharing the plane of a ‘dubious Russian Swiss-based minigarch’, even the red-top press was at a loss to explain. Was it sex? Was it drugs? Was it arms? For want of a shred of evidence it was none of them. Terror, the great catch-all these days, has also been considered, but rejected out of hand. No group has claimed responsibility.
Delving in her handbag, she unearthed her passport and the tickets and gave them to the uniformed policeman, who examined them with that extra slowness that policemen all over the world are taught to exhibit in order to raise the stress level of honest citizens.
The Service was his mother and father and his bit of God as well, even if its ways were sometimes imponderable.
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Stage actress & pro Palestinian Charlie is recruited by the Israelis to pose as a Palestinian terrorist. Gripping narrative.
While on a romantic getaway in Antigua, couple Perry and Gail meet a Russian businessman who calls himself Dima, and his family. After a game of tennis, Dima, out of the blue asks Perry to talk to British Secret Services at him wiling to trade Russian mafia secrets in exchange for sanctuary for him and his family in England. He also says that he's the "world's best money launderer." After Perry gives this information to the Secret Service, they suddenly hire him and Gail to go undercover and meet Dima again in order to get more information on Dima's life and business. This is something that will take the couple from Lonson, to Paris, to Switzerland. How far will Perry and Gail go to get these answers. The only easy thing they know about this task is the main rule: be innocent. Pbbbtt, for these two, not a problem!
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