John le Carre’s ‘A Legacy of Spies’ be to published by Viking Books in September

John le Carré credit Nadav Kandar LR

JOHN le Carré’s latest book, A Legacy of Spies, will be published by Viking Books on September 7.

This is the first novel in over twenty-five years to feature George Smiley, le Carré’s most beloved character. 

Peter Guillam, staunch colleague and disciple of George Smiley of the British Secret Service, otherwise known as the Circus, is living out his old age on the family farmstead on the south coast of Brittany when a letter from his old Service summons him to London.  The reason? His Cold War past has come back to claim him.

Intelligence operations that were once the toast of secret London, and involved such characters as Alec Leamas, Jim Prideaux, George Smiley and Peter Guillam himself, are to be scrutinised under disturbing criteria by a generation with no memory of the Cold War and no patience with its justifications.

Interweaving past with present so that each may tell its own intense story, John le Carré has spun a single plot as ingenious and thrilling as the two predecessors on which it looks back: The Spy Who Came in from the Cold and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.

In other news, 21 Le Carré novels are set to become Penguin Modern Classics.

For more than fifty years the author has written novels that have come to define our age, from his extraordinary Cold War novels – The Spy Who Came in from the ColdTinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Smiley’s People – to his powerful descriptions of the War on Terror in A Most Wanted Man and his most recent novel, A Delicate Truth.

In recognition of these literary achievements, Penguin is engaged in a nine year project to publish 21 of his novels in Penguin Modern Classics by 2018 – this will represent the most extensive body of work by a living author to be awarded this classic status.


  • In 2016 le Carré’s memoir, The Pigeon Tunnel,  was a number one bestseller
  • The BBC’s adaptation of his 1993 novel, The Night Manager, was watched by 10 million people in the UK.
  • The Night Manager producers, The Ink Factory, have announced that they will produce a new series of The Spy Who Came in from the Cold with a script by Oscar-winning screen writer, Simon Beaufoy, to be released in 2018.



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