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Download The Secret Pilgrim: A George Smiley Novel Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Secret Pilgrim: A George Smiley Novel, by John le Carré Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,350 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John le Carré Narrator: Michael Jayston Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The George Smiley Series Release Date:
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After the Berlin Wall came down and opened up new changes in eastern Europe, John le Carré’s stunning novel, The Secret Pilgrim, takes us behind the scenes into the former Cold War world.

The Cold War is over. The rules of the spying game have changed. But to train new spies for this uncertain future, one must first show them the past. Enter the man called Ned, the loyal and shrewd veteran of the Circus.

With the inspiration of his inscrutable mentor George Smiley, Ned thrills all as he recounts forty exhilarating years of Cold War espionage across Europe and the Far East. Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • Powerful . . . remarkable . . . a grand summation of all John le Carré’s themes. The New York Times
  • Le Carré…at the top of his form. Los Angeles Times
  • “Intriguing…Magisterial…The many ingredients are skillfully marshaled. Lucidly and elegantly controlled.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Illumines the spiritual condition of being a spy.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “Powerful…Remarkable…A grand summation of all John le Carré’s themes.”

    New York Times

  • “Le Carré is writing at the top of his form.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “Wonderful…laced with lethal irony or occasional hope, with characters ranging from the heroic to the most banal form of evil. If John le Carré had to chose between his own espionage experience and his gifts as a writer, one strongly suspects he would bet on the latter.”

    Boston Globe

  • “No other contemporary novelist has more durably enjoyed the twin badges of being both well-read and well-regarded…The stories Ned recalls along the way are good ones, suspenseful, telling, each one cleverly recounted.”

    Chicago Tribune

  • “They keep calling him a spy novelist, but of course he is much more; he is, indeed, one of the half-dozen best novelists now working in English…Here in The Secret Pilgrim are several old friends at twilight, telling tales to tomorrow morning’s fresh class…Anybody can write a novel. Nobody can write a le Carré novel.”

    Chicago Sun-Times

  • “Smiley is back!...Riveting…Marvelous.”

    Philadelphia Inquirer

  • “Powerful…A highly absorbing tale written with le Carré’s customary blend of deft characterization, scene-setting, and dialogue, not to mention a new-found affinity for humor.”


  • “Thrilling.”

    Kansas City Star

  • “Memorable…Strongly romantic…One finishes the book confident that le Carré will find new spies and that they will find new arenas in which to practice their deceptions.”


  • The Secret Pilgrim bridges a gap between the recent past and the unforeseeable future. No longer able, because of the innate honesty that has characterized his storytelling career, to offer a full-blown Cold War drama, le Carré pops out some discrete and satisfactory chilling ice cubes.”


  • “Scorching…Fascinating…Seductive…A dazzler.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Riveting…It’s not only one of the author’s best books, it’s one of the best books, period.”


  • “Near the end of his own career as a cold-war spy, the narrator invites his mentor, George Smiley, to address his students as they complete their spy training. Seeing Smiley again evokes for him a series of memories, some involving Smiley, all marvelously written vintage le Carré...Michael Jayston could not be better, giving a wry, elegant, wide-ranging performance that brings Smiley, Toby Esterhazy, and many other old friends from the Smiley novels back to vivid life.”


  • A #1 New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Max P | 2/15/2014

    " Excellent. Really shows le Carre's range, particularly at the end, when he veers away from European intrigue to write about bored clerks, Cambodian jungle nightmares, and ferreting out a Dwight Schrute-like traitor from the Foreign Office. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by umberto | 2/14/2014

    " I think this George Smiley novel is a bit disappointing since he's simply invited by Ned to share his knowledge/ideas, that is, he showed up once in a while in a class of young people hoping to be a great secret agent like him. Of course there're some exciting episodes worth reading but, I think, reading his Karla Trilogy is all right and you can say, "That's it!" In other words, you won't feel guilty or inadequate if you skip this one. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Eddie | 2/6/2014

    " Remembrances of past spy experiences "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Zane Safrit | 2/4/2014

    " I'm a big fan of LeCarre'. And this is very good. Not maybe his best. A series of really short-stories, tales, from the vantage point of 'Ned'. Pulls together some of the threads from his earlier novels, wrapped around the character George Smiley. Worth it. "

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