It is the third summer of perestroika. Barley Blair, London publisher, receives a smuggled document from Moscow. Blair, jazz-loving, drink-marinated, dishevelled, is hardly to the taste of the spymasters, yet he has to be used – sent to the Soviet Union to make contact. Katya, the Moscow intermediary, is beautiful, thoughtful, equally sceptical of all state ideology.
Together, as the safe clichés of hostility disintegrate, they may represent the future – an idea that is anathema to the entrenched espionage professionals on both sides.
“A classic le Carré”
The Sunday Times
“Beneath the masterly action pulses a brand new vein of terror . . . le Carré has achieved clarity of line, splendour of pace”
The Mail on Sunday
“Afire and thought-provoking . . . A treatise on our times”