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Friday, August 2, 2013

A Delicate Truth by John Le Carre


What would summer be like without a new John Le Carré thriller? He doesn’t disappoint with A Delicate Truth.  A man named Adam, married with a daughter and has served his country admirably for twenty years has never seen action. He is a well-travelled desk jockey. Suddenly without warning he is to become Paul Anderson, unmarried and childless and become active as directed by the minister in Gibraltar. He has no idea what is going on except he is holed up in a hotel and is pretending to be an ornithologist. Hush hush, cloak and dagger, tallyho and all that rot.
All of a sudden we are tagging along with a career diplomat name Toby who has gone from here to there and ends up as a private secretary for Quinn who has a dark past, Toby can’t seem to get a handle on. One thing is for sure, being in the corps is a dog eat dog world and who to trust is always in question. Toby has conferred with his mentor, Oakley. They speak about the minister; or rather Oakley pumps Toby for information. Oakley tells Toby to contact him immediately if anything strange comes up. Strange happens and Oakley is out of touch so Toby sets up a tape recorder to capture the clandestine weekend meeting. Eliot and Paul meet with the minister about something happening on the rock. When Toby finally gets to Oakley, Oakley denies previous meetings and Toby is flummoxed. He digitizes the tape, leaves one on his computer and tapes a backup on a thumb drive to the back of his grandparents wedding picture. Then he is transferred to Beirut from his London job. Needless to say, his girlfriend Isabel has left him. Such great intrigue and back stabbing.
Well, Paul isn’t Adam, he is Kit and married to Suzanna and is now retired and living in the country. He has a daughter, Emily, who is a doctor. It’s three years later and out of nowhere Jeb shows up. Paul’s or Adam’s or Kit’s worse nightmare. Toby reappears and after Jeb disappears, Toby is left to find him because Paul is not capable to do so. Jeb is a key witness to a government crime. Emily provides some more information and sends Toby on his merry way.
Each of the first four chapters presents a piece of the puzzle that will have to be solved in the final three chapters. Hang on this is just another beautifully twisted story by John Le Carré.

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