As one of the most popular and prolific writers of his era, Silverview, a posthumous novel from John le Carré, is the last complete work from this acclaimed author, who died in 2020 aged 89.
Leaving his life in the city to run a bookshop in a small seaside town, protagonist Julian Lawndsley becomes embroiled in the life of a family living in Silverview. Edward, in particular, shows an interest in Julian’s arrival, revealing knowledge about his family, while parallel investigations from the past and within the world of the secret service are taking place.
Silverview does seem lighter in substance than many previous novels from le Carré, yet the attention to detail and composed threads throughout combine to achieve a clever and distinctive plot. And while the slim volume doesn’t allow for such depth of characterisations as previous books have allowed, the subtle connections between the past and the present and uncovering the truth are crafted so expertly, as is the author’s depiction of the human condition.
A true master storyteller, and a loss to the world of literature. Silverview is an enthralling and inspiring tale – and as with so many previous works, it will be a joy to revisit le Carré’s world of espionage.
Silverview, John le Carré (Penguin)
Price: £20. Info: here
words RHIANON HOLLEY
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